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Project Posters


  • Gather & Catalogue Datasets
  • Determine & Specify Use Cases
  • Build Prototype Repository Platform
  • Represent Datasets in the developed Platform

DataNotes (September 2012 - February 2013)


Scientific research is increasingly based on the collection and use of significant amounts of data, which has led researchers to consider depositing them in data repositories. The goal of these repositories is the storage and preservation of datasets. One of the problems that usually arise is the difficulty experienced in interpreting these data. To overcome this issue, it is necessary not only to save the data but also to describe it. Descriptions can be specialised to varying degrees: they can be based only on generic descriptors such as title, date and creator, or include domain features. The creation of rich descriptions for the datasets in a repository requires the collaboration of an information-management specialist who is responsible for creating those descriptions. In this scenario, as the researcher has little control over data descriptions, the process tends to be time-consuming. In the case of the storage and description of data in universities, there are some projects where the uploading process depends on these specialized staff, called “curators”. This project aims to design and develop a collaborative annotation system to be used by re- searchers at the University of Porto. Using this system, they will be able to upload and describe their datasets themselves, using a set of tools to assist them in this process. They will also be able to describe, in free text, other observed facts that may be hard to fit into the available descriptors. Researchers are able not only to describe and update their own data but also data belonging to other researchers, provided they are authorised to do so. Based on the Semantic MediaWiki platform and one of its extensions, Semantic Forms, this new extension was developed to ensure the functionalities of DataNotes. The platform was also integrated with another project called UPBox so that they can both be part of a complete research data curation process. The initial objectives have been met, but there is plenty of opportunity for future expansion. Possible improvements include the development of a new extension on Semantic MediaWiki which would allow metadata schemas to be automatically imported into DataNotes, as well as semi-automatic annotation of data using the content of the datasets to be annotated.


UPBox (September 2012 - February 2013)


UPData (February 2011 - September 2011)

About the project

This was an experiment developed at U.Porto, which aimed to identify the scientific data curation needs at the university and the main problems in establishing a multi-disciplinary data curation platform.

U.Porto already offers a shared publications repository platform. The Open Repository of U.Porto is designed for depositing and disseminating the scientific production of the academic community.

U.Porto has participated in a state-of-art study in the context of the RCAAP. This study provides some insight on current data curation-related projects.

This project has been referenced at U.Porto's TIC Portal.

In June 2011 a presentation at IASSIST by Cristina Ribeiro and Eugénia Matos Fernandes, “Data Curation at U.Porto: Identifying current practices across disciplinary domains”, has referenced the project setup plan.

U.Porto has created an informative video presenting the institutional framework for the data repository. It includes three demonstration videos which highlight the curation process, data exploration and dataset search in the experimental repository.


Recent Publications


UPBox e DataNotes: um ambiente de suporte à gestão colaborativa de dados científicos. Universidade de São Paulo, December 20, 2013 - João Rocha da Silva, Cristina Ribeiro, João Correia Lopes; DOI:

Designing an Application Profile using qualified Dublin Core: a case study with fracture mechanics datasets Dublin Core 2013 Conference Proceedings (Lisbon, Portugal), June 2013 - João Aguiar Castro, João Rocha da Silva, Cristina Ribeiro

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