Library Juice Academy

Online Professional Development for Librarians

Introducing BIBFRAME: Moving Bibliographic Data into the Future

Instructor: Rebecca Guenther

Dates: Not currently scheduled

Credits: 1.5 CEUs or 15 PDHs

Price: $175

Libraries, archives and museums have developed metadata standards for describing resources in their collections for years, well before we heard of the word “metadata”. The Library of Congress initially developed and implemented the MARC format for encoding bibliographic data that could be read by computers in 1968. The format went through many changes since then, expanding in the kinds of resources that could be described, the functionality that was supported, and the countries that used it. We’ve heard calls for MARC’s death for over 10 years, since it was born in a different age, when computer storage space was expensive and there was no Internet for sharing information. Because of the large infrastructure in place that supports creating, sharing and managing bibliographic data built around MARC, replacing it has proven to be a difficult task requiring world-wide input and experimentation. At the same time, there are new ways to share information, and the vision of the Semantic Web is beginning to gain a foothold in our institutions. As many institutions have begun to experiment with and share bibliographic data as Linked Data, the Bibliographic Framework Initiative (BIBFRAME) has been under development to provide a framework and language to replace MARC using a Linked Data model.

It is a challenge to both take advantage of new models and tools that have emerged as part of the Semantic Web and still be able to carry over the rich bibliographic data that we have spent many years creating and sharing. BIBFRAME is an effort to create a framework that supports the description of all kinds of information objects in a Linked Data context, to connect with other Linked Data initiatives, and eventually to support the functionality needed for LAMs to satisfy their responsibilities in terms of their information resources.

This workshop gives an overview of Linked Data, how it developed, how it is encoded and used, and its importance to libraries, archives, and museums. It traces the development of BIBFRAME from the release of its initial data model to the current revision. It provides an overview of the BIBFRAME vocabulary version 2.0, its principles and encoding conventions with a discussion of its scope, strengths and shortcomings. It will look at other related ontologies and vocabularies, including controlled vocabularies that have been available as Linked Data and extensions to BIBFRAME that are under development. It will include discussion of current experimentation, especially the Linked Data for Production (LD4P) project and will demonstrate tools for transforming existing MARC records. A look at future developments of the BIBFRAME vocabulary, tools and possible implementation scenarios will be included.

This course will allow participants to:

  • Gain an understanding of the principles of Linked Data and why it is important to libraries, museums and archives
  • Explore the reasons for developing BIBFRAME, its data model, and how it can apply to various types of resources
  • Understand the BIBFRAME vocabulary version 2.0 and how bibliographic data is expressed using it
  • Learn about other Linked Data vocabularies that it will likely interact with
  • Explore tools for converting MARC records to BIBFRAME and creating/editing BIBFRAME descriptions
  • Learn about experimentation and what to expect in the future
Rebecca Guenther

Rebecca Guenther has over 35 years of experience in national libraries, primarily working on metadata standards. Most of that time was at the Library of Congress developing national and international metadata standards, including MARC 21, MODS, PREMIS, METS, and ISO language codes. She has served on numerous national and international standards committees, several as chair, has published widely in professional literature, and has given many workshops and presentations. She is currently a consultant on metadata issues based in New York. Some of her previous and current consultancies include the Library of Congress (working on BIBFRAME and PREMIS), the National Book Foundation, the New York Art Resources Consortium, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and the Metropolitan New York Library Council. She teaches metadata at NYU’s Moving Image Archiving and Preservation Program, Pratt’s School of Information and Library Science and several classes for Lyrasis. She continues to serve on the PREMIS Editorial Committee, MODS Editorial Committee and PB Core Advisory Subcommittee. Interview

Course Structure

This is an online class that is taught asynchronously, meaning that participants do the work on their own time as their schedules allow. The class does not meet together at any particular times, although the instructor may set up optional sychronous chat sessions. Instruction includes readings and assignments in one-week segments. Class participation is in an online forum environment.

Please contact us to arrange a special session of this class for a group of seven or more, with a negotiable discount, or to be notified when it is next scheduled.