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Call for Papers

Information Technology Section
& Cataloguing Section
& Classification and Indexing Section

Libraries and the Semantic Web

The IFLA annual congress provides an opportunity to present library research and outcomes in Information Technology and Innovation in a multi-disciplinary international forum. The IFLA Information Technology, Cataloguing, and Classification and Indexing sections invite technologists, librarians and other interested parties working in the field of the semantic Web to submit proposals for papers in a 4-hour joint session in Gothenburg, Sweden.


Since its premises the Semantic Web has always raised a strong interest within the library community. Now that libraries have fully entered the Web 2.0, they are facing a new challenge as they are seeking to play a major role in the Web value chain, by empowering their services in the user's flow and making their data work harder, in a more accessible and reusable way.

Semantic Web technologies open valuable opportunities for the development of these objectives, by creating appropriate data models that will be the next generation of library metadata formats, leveraging new technologies for innovative library systems, or making high-quality level data such as authority data or thesauri available to a wider community.

However, these opportunities are still only known to a smaller community of technically savvy librarians, and the strategic importance of these topics to the library community at large has to be demonstrated. Therefore the session aims for raising awareness among the library community about the relevance and potential of Semantic Web technologies for libraries.

This 4 hours session will start with a keynote presentation introducing the concepts of the Semantic Web and Linked Data. This is a call for additional papers that focus on how libraries can take over these technologies to create opportunities for their data and services on the Web.

Relevant topics include:

  • data modelling issues and how the Semantic Web relates to library standards such as MARC formats, FRBR, FRAD, etc.
  • libraries on the Web of knowledge : how Semantic Web technologies such as Ontologies, SKOS, etc. relate to libraries efforts in the field of classification, indexing and knowledge management
  • new options for searching, browsing and navigating in cross-domain objects linked to the web
  • next generation library systems: how Semantic Web technologies may change the way we design and create library software systems
  • open data / licensing issue: clarifying the licensing model for publishing open data on the Semantic Web
  • "success stories" and examples of existing projects in libraries using Semantic Web technologies

Proposals should address the topics in a strategic way, and not emphasize the technical aspects of realization, software or data models. This is not intended as a technical session for experts but rather as an introduction to the vision of the Semantic Web and the Linked Data movement for decision makers in libraries: How this vision relates to what libraries are trying to achieve in terms of knowledge building and sharing, in the context of the Web.


  1. The deadline for submitting a detailed, abstract (500 words) and full author details is 4 April 2010. Selection of papers is based on the abstract, and presenters will be notified by the end of 19 April 2010 at the latest whether they have been successful.
  2. All submissions should be sent to Dr. Alenka Kavcic-Colic, Information Technology Section, e-mail: alenka.kavcic@nuk.uni-lj.si
  3. The full paper is due on 31 May 2010 and must be an original submission not published elsewhere.
  4. Both abstracts and full papers should be submitted as a MS Word file by e-mail; fax or post should be used only as a last resort
  5. Papers should be of up to 4000 words
  6. Papers should be in English with an abstract, and the presenter must be fluent in English
  7. 20 minutes will be allowed for a summary delivery of the paper in the Conference
  8. The author(s) should indicate his/her personal full contact details and include a summary curriculum vitae with the paper. Also, a digital photograph would be useful

The abstracts will be reviewed by a sub-committee of members of the Standing Committee of the Information Technology, Cataloguing and Classification and Indexing Sections. 15-20 minutes will be allowed for a summary delivery of the paper during the joint session in Gothenburg.


All proposals must be in before 4 April 2010.

Please note

All expenses, including registration for the conference, travel, accommodation etc., are the responsibility of the authors/presenters. No financial support can be provided by IFLA, but a special invitation can be issued to authors/presenters if that is required.

Last update: 10 March 2010