Semantic metadata interoperability in digital libraries: a constructivist grounded theory approach

Getaneh Alemu, Brett Stevens, Penny Ross, L. Freund (Editor), E. Rasmussen (Editor), K. Sugiyama (Editor)

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Contemporary metadata standards and interoperability approaches are mainly authoritative and hierarchical, which tend to favour an expert controlled metadata approach that is ubiquitous in current library practises, and, hence, fail to take into account the diversity of cultural, linguistic and local perspectives that abound. To overcome this, it is proposed that a social constructivist approach should be adopted by libraries and other cultural heritage institutions when archiving information objects that need to be enriched with metadata, thereby reflecting the diversity of views and perspectives that can be held by their users. Following on Charmaz (2006), a constructivist grounded theory method is employed to investigate how library professionals and library users view metadata standards, collaborative metadata approaches and semantic web technologies in relation to semantic metadata interoperability. Following the completion of the first phase of data collection, preliminary reflections are presented, with emphasis on how library and information science professionals view current metadata practices, especially as used in academic library contexts. However, as the study is ongoing one, it is too early to generate theoretical categories and conclusions.
Original languageEnglish
JournalBulletin of IEEE Technical Committee on Digital Libraries.
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2012


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