In how many languages is AGROVOC available?
What topics does AGROVOC cover?
Does AGROVOC include scientific taxonomies and names of plants and animals?
Does AGROVOC include geographical entities?
What type of information is attached to AGROVOC concepts?
I think I noticed an error, how can I communicate this to AGROVOC?
My language is not covered by AGROVOC. Can it be added?
How is the quality of AGROVOC content ensured?
How are AGROVOC URIs assigned?
Why do URIs use numbers and not terms?
Is it possible to extract only a part of AGROVOC?
Can I have AGROVOC in one language only?
What is AGROVOC? A controlled vocabulary, a thesaurus, a concept scheme?
AGROVOC is a KOS. What does this mean?
What is the difference between FAOTERM and AGROVOC?
AGROVOC core and AGROVOC LOD - What is the difference?
In what sense is AGROVOC a concept scheme?
Concepts and terms - what is the difference?
How is AGROVOC organized?
How to deal with tags ns0:hasComponent and ns1:hasStatus in Agrovoc SKOS?
AGROVOC RDF file. What should I do with it?
Who is the owner of AGROVOC?
Who maintains AGROVOC?
Who is the owner of Vocbench?
How often is AGROVOC updated?
I would like to become an AGROVOC editor. How should I proceed?
I am an AGROVOC editor. Where shall "put" this new concept I want to add?
Tools & Services
Who uses AGROVOC, and for what?
Is AGROVOC available for Access database?
How can I integrate AGROVOC into my system?
How can I access AGROVOC?
Do I need to pay something to use AGROVOC?
Do I need to register to use AGROVOC?
Can l view or browse hierarchies when viewing AGROVOC online?
I am indexing agricultural articles. How do I get access to the AGROVOC thesaurus in order to search it?
I would like to use the AGROVOC Web services for my application. How to proceed?
Is AGROVOC available on cd-rom?
Is AGROVOC available as a book?
Where can I search AGROVOC online?
Can I integrate AGROVOC in my DSpace installation?
I want to link to AGROVOC - which URL should I use?
What is the AGROVOC technology stack?
Can I use AGROVOC in Koha?
Can I integrate AGROVOC in my Drupal installation?
AGROVOC is currently available in 21 languages: Arabic, Chinese, Czech, English, Farsi, French, German, Hindi, Hungarian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Lao, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Slovak, Spanish, Thai, Turkish and Ukrainian.
Four more languages are under development: Malaysian, Moldavian and Telugu.
AGROVOC covers all areas of interest to FAO, such as food, nutrition, agriculture, forestry, fisheries, names of animals and plants, environment, biological notions, techniques of plant cultivation, etc. The thesaurus is hierarchically organized under 25 top concepts. The graphic below shows the distribution of concepts under these top concepts:
Yes, some 80% of AGROVOC concepts are about animals and plants. They can be found under the top concept "Organism".
Yes, AGROVOC includes geographical entities, such as countries and continents, under top concept "entities". It also includes geographical entities such as lakes and mountains, which can be found under "features". The fact that a given lake passes through a given country, is expressed by means of the concept to concept relation “Spatially includes”.
Concepts referring to geographical entities are grouped together in “subvocabularies of concepts”. Currently AGROVOC distinguishes the following ones:
1. Geographical entities country level
2. Geographical entities above country level
3. Geographical entities below country level
For each concept in AGROVOC we can distinguish the following types of information:
Write us at firstname.lastname@example.org
And thank you for letting us know!
Yes, with your help :) For the maintenance of each language version we collaborate with different domain experts (or information managers with domain knowledge). For the current community of AGROVOC editors, see People.
If you are interested in translating (a part of) AGROVOC into your language, please let us know by writing to email@example.com and we will provide you with the needed support.
All AGROVOC editors are recognized experts in the field, working in centers of recognized value in the area of agriculture. Moreover, our workflow distinguishes two editorial roles: “validator” and “editor”. Beyond being very knowledgeable in their specific area of expertise, validators are also well acquainted with the AGROVOC structure and editorial issues. Validators are entitled to accept or reject contributions made by editors.
Editorial guidelines for editors (English content) and validators are avilable. The latest version of the guidelines is available online as a wiki page, while the stable version from May 2015 is available as a pdf. These guidelines support the editors in understanding how AGROVOC is constructed and how terms or concepts can be best inserted or updated within AGROVOC.
All AGROVOC URIs contain a numeric part (see question: Why do URIs use numbers and not terms?) That numeric part is currently automatically assigned by VocBench, the tool used for the maintenance of AGROVOC. However, at the time of the first conversion of AGROVOC into an RDF/SKOS resource, URIs were based on the ID assigned to terms in the database, that is why you may have the impression to find different "schemes" in the construction of AGROVOC URIs for concepts.
A typical URI (or URL) for an AGROVOC concept has this shape:
The English label for this concept is "maize", and people often ask: why don't you use
http://aims.fao.org/aos/agrovoc/c_maize instead, just like Wikipedia does?
Well, the point is that AGROVOC has terms in many languages. How to chose only one among them? Also, what if no term in that language was available for some concepts? That is why we chose numeric URIs
AGROVOC is distributed in various ways (for download, via web services and accessible through a SPARQL endpoint) always in its full size. It is up to the users to extract any "fragment" of AGROVOC they may be interested in. For example, you can download AGROVOC, store it in a local triple store and extract a part of AGROVOC from there. However, following on some user requests, we have extracted and made available a few "language versions" of AGROVOC (English/Turkish and English/French). in the future, we may provide more of these versions, in a systematic way. Meanwhile, please let us know your opinion: Would you find language versions useful? And why? Please write us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Please look at question: Is it possible to extract only a part of AGROVOC?
AGROVOC is all three.
AGROVOC is a controlled vocabulary in the sense that it contains words used for a specific application (e.g., indexing documents, or more in general, to provide values to pieces of metadata as dct:subject).
AGROVOC is a thesaurus in the sense that its content (i.e., concepts and terms) is hierarchically organized, by means of hierarchical and non-hierarchical relations.
AGROVOC is a concept scheme, or rather a SKOS concept scheme, in the sense that it is a controlled vocabulary expressed in SKOS, a vocabulary for RDF, the Resource Description Framework.
KOS stands for Knowledge Organization System. Thesauri, authority lists, controlled vocabularies and classification systems are examples of KOS. In particular, AGROVOC is a KOS because its terms and concepts are normally used as values of certain metadata properties. For example a concept from AGROVOC may be used as the value of dct:subject, the Dublin Core property used to indicate the topic of a resource (see http://dublincore.org/documents/dcmi-terms/).
AGROVOC is a thesaurus, while FAOTERM is a terminology.
Terminologies deal with the form, use and meaning of terms in a specific context, often in different languages. Usually, terminologies also aim at achieving standardization of the use of words within a given domain or organization.
Thesauri are controlled vocabularies built and used for the purpose of indexing documents in a library. Thesauri do not aim at a terminological standardization, but rather aim at bridging the language of the indexer and the language of the searcher. Moreover, thesauri tend to focus on "topics", whereas terminologies often also include proper names (e.g. of organizations, committees) and even slogans.
These differences are also reflected in the maintenance of AGROVOC and FAOTERM. AGROVOC is maintained by a community of experts facilitated by FAO, while FAOTERM is maintained by terminologists and translators from the Meeting Programming and Documentation Service (CPAM) of FAO.
See question: How can I access AGROVOC?
AGROVOC is a concept scheme in the sense that it attempts to provide an organization of the domains related to agriculture.
AGROVOC is also a concept scheme in a more technical meaning, related to the fact that AGROVOC consists of a number of SKOS concepts.
AGROVOC was born as a purely terminological resource hierarchically organized, i.e., a thesaurus. Now, AGROVOC is a full fledged web oriented resource available in RDF, in which all notions related to thesauri (e.g., the traditional notions of RT and BT/NT) have a translation into SKOS properties.
A Concept may be just anything about which we want to say something. Concepts are represented by terms, i.e. words in a given language.
In SKOS, concepts are formalized as skos:Concept and identified by dereferenceable Uniform Resource Identifier (URIs), that is, URL. For example, URI http://aims.fao.org/aos/agrovoc/c_12332 is the AGROVOC concept for maize.
Terms, or labels, are the actual terms used to name a concept. For example maize, maïs, 玉米, ข้าวโพด are all labels for the same concept in English, French, Hindi respectively.
In AGROVOC, concepts always have at least one preferred term (or descriptor, in the classical terminology of thesauri) in each given language, and zero or more non-preferred term. In the RDF jargon, terms are called labels: preferred labels, and non preferred labels. In order to achieve more expressivity, AGROVOC uses the SKOS extension for labels, SKOS-XL. The predicates used are:
skosxl:prefLabel, used for preferred terms (“descriptors” in thesaurus terminology), and skosxl:altLabel, used for non- preferred terms.
AGROVOC is organized as a hierarchy of concepts that have names in various languages (up to 21). A concept is expressed by terms, as in the case of “maize”, “maïs”, “玉米”, “ข้าวโพด”, which are all terms (labels) for the same concept in English, French, Hindi respectively.
AGROVOC concepts are hierarchically organized under 25 general top concepts, such as: activities, processes, methods etc. The figure below depicts a few AGROVOC top level concepts (as visualized in VocBench, AGROVOC's editing tool). Concepts may also be linked by non hierarchical relations, either expressing a generic notion of “relatedness”, or expressing some more refined relation (e.g. something “is a product of” something else).
From a formal point of view, AGROVOC is an RDF/SKOS-XL concept scheme. The classical BT/NT thesauri relations are expressed by the SKOS predicates skos:broader and skos:narrower. For non-hierarchical relations between concepts and terms, AGROVOC uses the SKOS property skos:related, and a number of subproperties of skos:related, that are grouped together and called the Agrontology vocabulary.
"ns0" and "ns1" are short for namespace prefixes. In this case, "ns0" replaces the uri of the "agrontology", i.e., the vocabulary of properties of AGROVOC. Its full uri is: http://aims.fao.org/aos/agrontology#. You can also look at the whole vocabulary here: http://aims.fao.org/sites/default/files/uploads/file/aos/agrontology/index.htm. "ns1" replaces a namespace specific to the tool used to maintain AGROVOC, the VocBench. It stands for: art.uniroma2.it/ontologies/vocbench#
AGROVOC.rdf is a file containing the AGROVOC data in RDF-SKOS format or rather, various serializations of RDF: RDF/XML, N3, NQ, TRIX. It is not a program to install!
The file is big, but usually RDF files are not build to be read by humans, but by machines. Files like that are either loaded into a triple store (e.g., Sesame, OWLIM, ...) or loaded into an rdf editor/viewer (e.g. TopBraid, Protege) or parsed by an application (by IT people...). Once in your triple store (e.g. OWLIM, Sesame), you can manipulate the data as you like and use it in your application.
However, if your goal is simply to inspect the AGROVOC content, we suggest that you use either the online AGROVOC browsing tool (http://aims.fao.org/standards/agrovoc/functionalities/search), or the web-based AGROVOC editing tool (rather, its Sandbox version: http://artemide.art.uniroma2.it/vocbench2Agrovoc (AGROVOC test version) ).
AGROVOC was created in the 1980s by FAO as an indexing tool for the AGRIS repository. Nowadays, AGROVOC is maintained by a wide community of experts and institutions, with the coordination and technical support of FAO. For more information about the people involved in AGROVOC, see People.
Copyright for the AGROVOC thesaurus content in English, French, Spanish, Arabic and Chinese is licensed under a a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License (CC BY 3.0). For any other language, the copyright rests with the institution responsible for its production.
AGROVOC is a collaborative effort.
The AGROVOC team of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the UN keeps AGROVOC up to date, together with a number of institutions and individual domain experts serving as focal points for specific languages or topics.
FAO carries mainly the responsability for the six FAO languages (English, French, Spanish, Arabic, Chinese and Russian), facilitates the technical maintenance of AGROVOC, including its publication as a Linked data resource, and coordinates all editorial activities.
See the list of people and institutions collaborating on the maintenance of AGROVOC.
VocBench is developed by a collaboration between the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations and the University of Rome "Tor Vergata". A sandbox server (AGROVOC test version) for testing (some of) its capabilities is hosted by courtesy of the Malaysian research centre MIMOS Berhad. Such a SandBox version of VocBench displays AGROVOC.
VocBench is an open source project.
AGROVOC is updated by our editors and our team on a continuous basis.
Then, about twice a year, we release a new version of AGROVOC. Releases of AGROVOC are indicated by the month of the release.
The procedure for becoming an editor is the following:
A) As a first step you should register on the VocBench Sandbox, where you can learn how the system works and where you can experiment with adding concepts, terms and relations as you wish. This is the link:http://artemide.art.uniroma2.it/vocbench2Agrovoc (AGROVOC test version)
B) As soon as you feel comfortable with the system, please contact us at email@example.com. Then we will send you some questions like what are your fields of expertise etc. to be filled for our documentation.
C) The last step is the registration on the VocBench production version. Once registered on the production version you can edit the actual AGROVOC thesaurus.
We have manuals for editors that explain how to work with VocBench and how to edit the AGROVOC thesaurus itself.
The editing process: After having edited the thesaurus within the VocBench production version, your editing will be validated (accepted or rejected). Once the editing is accepted, it will be part of AGROVOC after the next update (several times a year).We are looking forward to your cooperation!
We have created a manual for editors, which are meant to guide you through the process of contributing to AGROVOC. Currently these guidelines are only avavilable in English and have a special focus on the English version of AGROVOC. Dedicated guidelines for other languages may be developed in the future.
AGROVOC is edited using VocBench (VB), a web-based vocabulary management tool. VocBench fully supports multilinguality and embodies a formalized editorial workflow. Current release is 2.2.
VocBench allows for the distinction between "user roles", such as "editors" and "validators", with the possibility for validators of approving or rejecting "draft" edits. Also, different types of editing rights may be assigned by language. For more information see the VocBench User Manual.
The VocBench installation used to maintain AGROVOC is available only to AGROVOC editors. But if you want to explore VB functionalities, feel free to use the VB Sandbox (AGROVOC test version).It shows AGROVOC data that may be safely modified and even deleted (real data is elsewhere! :)
The AGROVOC Web Services provide a way to include AGROVOC data in your application, with no download of data in your local system. Nearly 20 methods are available, as per the list below. From a technical point of view, the AGROVOC web services expose the AGROVOC rdf data (accessed through the SPARQL endpoint of AGROVOC, http://188.8.131.52:10035/catalogs/fao/repositories/agrovoc) through SOAP Web Services technology.
Here the list of currently maintained Web Services. Note that no further web services will be developed in the future; access to AGROVOC through the current SPARQL endpoint is recommended.
For more details about the web services go to: https://aims-fao.atlassian.net/wiki/display/AGV/List+of+Web+Services
The WSDL file for them is: http://artemide.art.uniroma2.it/SKOSWS/services/SKOSWS?wsdl
For the software project see: https://bitbucket.org/aims-fao/agrovoc-web-services/.
AGROVOC is a controlled vocabulary covering all the areas of food, nutrition, agriculture, fisheries, forestry, environment and related (the area of interest of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the UN). It contains 32,000+ concepts available in up to 21 languages, and it is aligned with 16 other vocabularies and resources. Among other uses, AGROVOC is used for indexing, retrieving and organizing data in information systems as well as Web pages.
VocBench is the tool used to maintain AGROVOC up to date. VocBench is a web-based collaborative editing tool for multilingual thesauri which publishes thesauri in RDF-SKOS. For more information about VocBench, visit: http://aims.fao.org/vest-registry/tools/vocbench-2
Please visit the Vocbench Support Material page on AIMS: http://aims.fao.org/vocbench-support-material
AGROVOC is mainly used in library catalogues and information systems, in order to standardize the indexing of data and documents. Moreover, since AGROVOC is also a linked open data resource, it is increasingly used to retrieve and integrate data in the linked data environment. For instance, AGROVOC is used to index documents in the FAO physical and digital library and it is also used as a backbone of AGRIS. For a longer list of applications and institutions using AGROVOC see the Uses page.
No. We discontinued the distribution of AGROVOC in that format. Some of the old distributions of AGROVOC are available at: http://aims.fao.org/access-agrovoc
There at least two ways to use AGROVOC in your application:
1. You may use the AGROVOC Web services. Note though that you will need somebody with IT skills to call the services and expose the data according to your needs. Using the AGROVOC Web services, you will always access the latest version of AGROVOC. The necessary documentation is available from this page: aims-fao.atlassian.net/wiki/display/AGV/WEB+SERVICES
2. You can download AGROVOC in some formats and import it into your system. See the Access AGROVOC page.
The most updated version for download is in RDF/SKOS, but you can also download an SQL dump (slightly-less updated), which you may then upload in your database. Some IT skills are required.
You may access the latest version of AGROVOC in various ways:
For previous versions and more information on ways to access AGROVOC, visit the Access page.
No, you do not need to pay anything. AGROVOC is released under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License (CC BY 3.0), which means you are free to:
Share — copy and redistribute the material in any medium or format
Adapt — remix, transform, and build upon the material
for any purpose, even commercially.
Under the following terms:
Attribution — You must give appropriate credit, provide a link to the license, and indicate if changes were made. You may do so in any reasonable manner, but not in any way that suggests the licensor endorses you or your use.
No additional restrictions — You may not apply legal terms or technological measuresthat legally restrict others from doing anything the license permits.
No, you do not need to register. Simply visit the Access AGROVOC page and open the links you are interested in.
Please go to AGROVOC online at http://aims.fao.org/standards/agrovoc/functionalities/search enter a search term, e.g. development, and click on 'search'. You will get a list of term results that match your search. When you click on one of the concepts, in the left pannel the hierarchy of the selected concept will appear and in the right pannel all the information regarding the concept. To navigate within the hierarchy, just click on other concepts in the left pannel.
You can search AGROVOC terms at http://aims.fao.org/standards/agrovoc/functionalities/search
First of all, you need to decide whether the web services are the solution for you. See question: How can I integrate AGROVOC into my system? Remember that AGROVOC is also available for download and for access through its SPARQL endpoint. We actually recommend the use of the SPARQL endpoint. If you decide for the web services, and you are reading these FAQ, then you should probably liaise with your IT reference person and study the practical possibility for inclusion of them in your application.
Nope. Sorry. The last printed version of AGROVOC dates back to 1995.
In the future, we may consider making AGROVOC available as a pdf for you to download and print, but this is not possible right now. To be always updated with news on AGROVOC, join the AGROVOC group of interest and/or keep an eye on the AGROVOC home page and the monthly AIMS Newsletter for the latest news!
you may search and browse AGROVOC online at http://aims.fao.org/standards/agrovoc/functionalities/search.
Accessible in the menu of the AGROVOC section on AIMS under "Search".
Unfortunately, DSpace does not support the use of resources of choice, such as AGROVOC. However, there is a specific distribution of DSpace that can be used with AGROVOC or other similar thesauri and it is called AgriOcean DSpace.
You may want to consider using Drupal or AgriDrupal instead.
Drupal is an open source CMS, which you could install together with the available modules that allow you to use AGROVOC for the tagging and organization of content.
AgriDrupal consists of a set of Drupal modules packaged together to address the needs of agricultural information management. It also includes modules using AGROVOC for indexing content.
The URIs of concepts from AGROVOC look like this one: http://aims.fao.org/aos/agrovoc/c_7951. You can recognize two parts in this URI: a part which is common to all URIs in AGROVOC, "http://aims.fao.org/aos/agrovoc/", and a part that is specific to an individual concept, here "c_7951".
When you need to provide a stable and also machine readable access to an AGROVOC concept, you will have to use its AGROVOC URIs, like: http://aims.fao.org/aos/agrovoc/c_7951. These URIs are the actual URI for an AGROVOC concept in the Linked Open Data style, and are associated to a content negotiation mechanism (which means that an HTML page is returned when the URL is accessed by a human, while RDF is returned when the page is accessed by a software application).
Addresses like http://aims.fao.org/skosmos/agrovoc/en/page/c_7951 (note the difference, they contain "skosmos") are those generated by the browsing tool that we use, called Skosmos. If an application uses those addresses, it gets no information. You may want to use these links to pass around a nicer visualization of an AGROVOC concept, for example in an email message.
We have these two URLs for a single concept because the first visualization (the one produced by the content negotiation) does not support search.
The entire maintenance cycle of AGROVOC relies on a technology stack that comprises the following layers of components and services:
AGROVOC technology stack
AGROVOC is a multilingual thesaurus, it can be used by libraries to index and retrieve their documents.
Koha is an open source, Web-based Integrated Library System with a cataloguing module. Tools like Koha use thesauri and controlled vocabularies as "authorities".
As far as we know, KOHA does not support direct access of thesauri (i.e. authorities) that are published as RDF. However, the community of libraries is moving towards RDF and linked data, so things may change soon.
Yes, you can. Drupal is an open source CMS. You can install it together with the available modules that allow you to use AGROVOC for the tagging and organization of content. See https://www.drupal.org/
AgriDrupal is a packaging of Drupal that comes already together with the relevant AGROVOC modules. See: http://aims.fao.org/vest-registry/tools/agridrupal