University of Southampton OCS (beta), CAA 2012

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Experiences with SKOS from the STAR and STELLAR Projects
Douglas Tudhope, Ceri Binding, Phil Carlisle, Keith May, Andreas Vlachidis

Last modified: 2011-12-19


Abstract proposal for CAA 2012 Vocabularies Session (Code: Data2)

The use of standardized vocabularies in archaeology: full day session and workshop



Experiences with SKOS from the STAR and STELLAR Projects

Ceri Binding, Phil Carlisle, Keith May, Doug Tudhope, Andreas Vlachidis

(University of Glamorgan and English Heritage)


The proposed full paper describes the experiences from the AHRC funded STAR and STELLAR projects (2007-2011) with SKOS. These projects have made extensive use of SKOS:

The techniques used to representing English Heritage (National Monuments Record) Thesauri in RDF SKOS format will be described. The web services and user interface widgets developed to provide access to the thesauri will be explained, along with the various uses made of the thesauri within the projects. These include their use for semantic concept based search, semantic alignment of free text type fields with the thesauri, query expansion, SKOS thesauri in complementary use with the CIDOC CRM ontology, and as resources for natural language processing applications that extract conceptual entities from archaeological grey literature.

The EH thesauri converted include Monument Types, Archaeological Objects, Evidence, Building Materials, Environmental Sciences, Timelines. SKOS based terminology services and widgets will be demonstrated, along with different applications. Validation options will be considered.

The development of a STELLAR project tool facilitating the representation of thesauri in SKOS format and allowing the potential expression of the resulting thesauri as linked data will be presented.

Issues arising from the work will be discussed and alternative approaches compared. Discussion will include experience with XSL transformation methods versus a custom application for transformation. The critical issue of how to handle non-standard features will be addressed and opened for general discussion. The issue of mapping between different SKOS based glossaries and thesauri will be discussed.


Contact: Douglas Tudhope (



SKOS thesauri vocabularies semantic