The Fourth International Linked Open Data in Libraries, Archives and Museums (LODLAM) summit will be held in Venice, Italy, at the Fondazione Giorgio Cini June 28-29 , 2017.

LODLAM stands for Linked Open Data in Libraries, Archives and Museums. Linked data is a combination of techniques, tools and web standards that enable the World Wide Web to evolve from a web of documents to a web of data. When applied to libraries, archives, and museums, linked data transforms the way we discover, analyze, and visualize cultural, scientific and government information.

The LODLAM Summit brings together thought leaders from around the world working in digital cultural heritage, eScience, and the digital humanities to debate, network and share their ideas, latest projects, hacking skills, data management methods, and to participate in the LODLAM Challenge.
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  1. Ingrid Mason

    What happened?


    Reflections on the 2017 LODLAM Summit are emerging, here are some already posted up on the web (let us know if there are others, and we’ll add them to this list).

    Any of the 2017 Summit delegates that want to write a report up are invited to do so as a post on the 2017 Summit website.


    2017 LODLAM Summit was held at the Cini Foundation, Venice, ItalyMy Report

    To say the very least, I had an incredible time in Venice.  By incredible I mean a time full of intellectual stimulation, practical concerns and logistics, able to see friends and colleagues from all over the world, and, in a city of such extraordinary beauty, culture, and history.

    Once again I discovered how much I really love the world of semantics and informatics (see the session notes).  What an extraordinary stroke of good fortune to get an international summit up and running and in such a beautiful setting at the Cini Foundation.  Bellissima!

    The LODLAM Summits have a special quality and it is a generosity of spirit and mind (and supporters).  It is this special quality (and levels of informality in the way this community comes together) that makes my cup runneth over.  Much has been gained by “doing” (for me).  Here are my handful of insights and lessons learned as a first time facilitator, to offer back in.

    Lessons Learned

    Assume the best in people:  If I could have a wish, it would have been to capture all of the delegates creating the open space by rearranging the chairs and then closing it.  It was such a gift and a sight to behold.

    Best laid plans:  To quote from a kind email Rob Warren sent after the Summit that made me laugh “it’s a lot of thankless work and sometimes… well, the island starts flooding at dinner!”  Many of you offered thanks to the organising committee in some way and gracefully offered constructive feedback.

    Accepting change: We want to examine how we come together to share ideas, grow and collaborate: do better, maybe more or less, definitely do differently.  Check out the session notes collated on community plan / future LODLAM for our discussion.

    Leading lights: It is not possible for me to post on the Summit without reflecting on the people who have led (here’s looking at you Jon Voss) and are continuing to lead the way.  Apart from all the nerdy brilliance evident in newbies and experienced curatorial, informatics and technical folks I want to shine light on other kinds of leadership skills that are evident.  Those of you with the wisdom or life experience who know when to offer guidance, to stand up or back, be quiet or speak up, to give thanks, shrug off or expose problems, to have a stake or to take risks.  Plenty of that kind of leadership was on show too and it was an inspiration.

    Grazie mille.

  2. Ingrid Mason

    LODLAM Challenge Winners


    Over the past two days the ~100 delegates of the 2017 LODLAM Summit listened to the final pitches from the five finalists of the Technical Challenge and voted on the winners for two prizes.  Valentine Charles (Europeana) announced the two prize winners.

    Grand Prize went to: DIVE+

    Johan Oomen aka Invisible Man (Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision) & Valentine Charles (Europeana)














    Open Data Prize went to: WarSampo

    Eero Hyvönen (University of Helsinki and Aalto University) & Valentine Charles (Europeana)

    Grand Prize – DIVE+ was awarded this USD$2,000 prize because they have demonstrated significant impact (a mix of social, cultural, and technical factors). All of the Summit sponsors provided the sponsorship for the prize and funds for the travel grants.

    WarSampo was awarded USD$1,000 prize w​here making cultural heritage material openly available has been a core aspect of a linked open data project.  Synaptica provided the sponsorship for the prize.

  3. redazione

    Art exhibits on the San Giorgio Maggiore island


    The exhibition Ettore Sottsass, The Glass, explores the Italian designer’s complete glass production, consisting of close to 200 items from major private collections as well as objects from historical archives of the Venetian glassworks Sottsass worked in.





    The exhibition Alighiero Boetti: Minimum/Maximum 
    celebrates the 20th-century Italian artist with over twenty striking works selected for the first time according to format to produce a comparison of “minimum” and “maximum” in his most significant series. The show includes a special project by Hans Ulrich Obrist and Agata Boetti on the theme of the photocopy, entitled COLOUR = REALITY. B+W= ABSTRACTION (except for the zebras)



    The exhibition, Us Silkscreeners… takes the story of the very first silkscreen paintings by Rauschenberg and Warhol as its point of departure, namely Rauschenberg’s Renascence and Warhol’s Dollar Bills Series, both completed in 1962.

    Andy Warhol and Robert Rauschenberg at the Pergamon Museum 1983 © Christopher Makos

    In the spring of that same year a meeting between the two artists took place, which marked the beginning of a new direction in photo transferring, that would not only impact the artist’s own career, but would also influence the art scene at large, thus, forming Rauschenberg and Warhol’s legacy. The exhibition,  Late Series, presents two artworks from some of the most important later series by Rauschenberg, amongst other Borealis, Urban Bourbon, Scenarios and his last one: Runts. A common thread for all series is the image transfer, which started in 1962 and since got developed and refined in multiple ways.

    New Media (Virtual Reality Art): Faurschou foundation presents new media works by the internationally acclaimed artists Paul McCarthy and Christian Lemmerz.  Khora Contemporary, a platform solely dedicated to virtual art (VR) created as a bridge between artists and Virtual Reality developers, collaborated with Paul McCarthy and Christian Lemmerz, the predecessors within the field, to produce astonishing new media works.

    Qwalala, a monumental outdoor installation by American artist Pae White, on the Island of San Giorgio Maggiore in Venice.commissioned by LE STANZE DEL VETRO. The work by American artist Pae White consists of a curving wall made of 3,000 solid glass-bricks, each hand-cast in the Veneto region. At 75 metres long and 2.4 metres high, it occupies the entire area opposite LE STANZE DEL VETRO. The title of the piece, Qwalala, is a Native American Pomo word and references the meandering flow of the Gualala river in Northern California, which the work echoes in both its structure and layout.

    Last but not least Michelangelo Pistoletto: One and One Makes Three, which features a large selection of works by the Arte Povera pioneer who is 84 this year. An exhibition conceived for the Basilica of San Giorgio Maggiore and for the adjoining spaces, the Sacristy, the Main Choir, the Sala del Capitolo and the Officina dell’Arte Spirituale.

    Free entrance

  4. Ingrid Mason

    Session Notes


    In each session at the Summit there will be a facilitator, a notetaker.  A good idea if another delegate volunteers to keep time (timekeeper).  Many hands make light work!

    We will have a bulletin board onsite at Cini and online and invite delegates to update this as the sessions run. It’s at

    The session notes become the informal Summit proceedings and can be shared with the wider community, especially if actions, collaborations and exemplars arise from those discussions.





  5. Robert Warren

    Early LODLAM Meetup Tuesday Evening.


    Are you new to Venice? Are you blasé from your flight filled with paper corrections, email drafts and funding proposals? Need something to keep busy with in the long dark period between tea time and dinner?

    Meet fellow @lodlam attendees at Cantinone già Schiavi (address Dorsoduro 992 fondamenta Nani, 30123 Venice or 45.430945,12.3261018 for the hardcore) at 4PM on Tuesday the 28th. The venue is also (mis?)translated as Wine Cellars Already Slaves which should start a few conversations about Al translation. The venue is about 25mins by vaporetto / foot from the island of San Giorgio Maggiore.

    Come and meet your fellow delegate, catch up with old friends and unwind before we get to work on Wednesday!


  6. redazione

    Sunset dinner for delegates at the Island of San Servolo

    The church cloister, courtesy of San Servolo – Metropolitan Services of Venice

    The church cloister, courtesy of San Servolo – Metropolitan Services of Venice

    The Island of San Servolo is composed of a large architectural complex and a lovely park. The island was a monastic seat for a thousand years, then it housed psychiatric patients until the hospital’s closing following the psychiatric reform of 1978. Its first settlement dates back to the 17th century, when a group of Benedictine monks took refuge on the narrow and marshy island. In 1647, the complex was given to a group of Benedictine, Dominican and Franciscan nuns from the island of Candia. Next, the Senate of the Venetian Republic decided to use the Island of San Servolo to house the many injured who fled the clashes with the Turks. Medical services were provided by the Padri Ospedalieri di San Giovanni di Dio, now known as Fatebenefratelli. From that time on, the island’s history became closely linked with the authorities’ attitude toward disabling illnesses in general, and mental illness in particular.
    The Province of Venezia, now known as the Metropolitan City of Venice, retained ownership of the island. In the 1990s, it began an architectural recovery programme to protect and promote it through its in-house company, San Servolo – Servizi Metropolitani di Venezia.

    Our Sponsored Dinner will take place on the Island of San Servolo, on Wednesday, at 7:30 pm.

  7. Ingrid Mason

    Pitching a Session


    Just what exactly does it mean to “pitch a session”?

    Pitch Ahead of the Summit

    As part of getting ready for the Summit we encourage people to pitch sessions (by activating their user account on the LODLAM site) before we all meet in Venice.  These accounts appear under Delegates/Profiles in the main menu of the LODLAM 2017 website.

    Close up of Kid Nichols grip [ca. 1901]. Boston Public Library.

    Close up of Kid Nichols grip [ca. 1901]. Boston Public Library.

    The email address you supplied in your application to come to the Summit will be associated with your user account for the site and you can login and put your pitch into a post now and if you’re a Twitter user, post that out, so others know what you’re thinking about.

    Here’s an example:  Adrian Pohl has user name (acka47), his user profile is active, and he has pitched a session proposal already about documenting linked open data.

    Pitch At the Summit

    At the beginning of both days there’s a marketplace of sessions which we’ll all come up with together, a mix of those we have already put forward before the summit (on the website) and those we create on the spot. On the day, this involves, standing up, and summarising your session and then writing down the session name (and your name) on a post-it note, to put up on the board.  Pitching is just amazing (because people have incredible ideas!) and it happens really quickly.

    So it is a good idea to have some key messages for those you want to draw into your session.  What the session is about (the topics and discussion points you want to cover or collaborative action you want to take) and and who might be interested in joining in with you (whether you want to hack or yack, people with passion for your latest LODLAM mission, or expertise in XYZ).

    Once we are done with the pitching process, these session proposals will be clustered and sorted by organisers, and then we’ll all vote.  We take this approach so we can figure out which sessions might be of general interest and need a big space, or focused and need a smaller space, to work together in.

    This insures that the issues that are most important to us, many of which are evolving as we prepare to travel or get ready to speak, will be addressed in a dynamic, collegial and constructive environment.

    The Summit schedule is a framework, which may continue to change a little through the meeting.  The start and end times are the only things that won’t change at this point.  The flexible schedule will be updated on a wall during the meeting so that delegates can always find the sessions of most interest to them (of which there will be no shortage of!!).

    Should I have a presentation prepared?

    No.  Come with questions, ideas, passion, but not presentations, to do your pitching with.

    Dork Shorts/Speedos

    The only exception here is that we will have one session period at the end of the day on Wednesday for 2 minute “dork shorts” to borrow a term from (or “speedos” if you’re an Australian).  These short talks are timed, 2 minute lightning briefs, that everyone will have a chance to get up and have a go.  This session is a great opportunity to tell the group what you’re working on.  Remember, technology doesn’t always work on the day, so have any video/screenshots, etc loaded onto your computer to share, and BYOD (bring your own dongle).

    Open Space Technology

    We’re utilising Open Space Technology (Wikipedia) as the format to run this summit.  Put simply pitching falls into items 3 and 4:

    1. a broad, open invitation which articulates the purpose of the meeting;
    2. participants’ chairs arranged in a circle;
    3. a “bulletin board” of issues and opportunities posted by participants;
    4. a “marketplace” with many break-out spaces that participants move freely between, learning and contributing as they “shop” for information and ideas;
    5. a “breathing” or “pulsation” pattern of flow, between plenary and small-group breakout sessions.
  8. redazione

    Session Proposals: Open


    What about linked open data (LOD) is on your mind?

    Is there a session you want to lead or join in on when we gather at the Cini Foundation?

    Why get in early with a session proposal?


    Venezia by gnuckx CC0

    Venezia by gnuckx CC0

    If the answer to any of the following questions is in the affirmative then maybe it is time to submit a session proposal.

    • Do you have a wonderful, crazy LOD idea burning in your thoughts?
    • Are you dazed when looking at integrating persistent identifiers into your LOD?
    • Should disambiguation and sameAs relationships ever be linked together in the same sentence?
    • Have you been using LOD to help you answer a research question and you have a ton of insight to share?
    • Are you using LOD to breakdown data silos for resource discovery?
    • Is there a LOD project challenge you would like more people involved in?


    Here’s the more plain-speaking answer:

    A session proposal lays out for the whole LODLAM community (including delegates at the Summit) questions and opportunities that might be of interest.  At the Summit it is possible for delegates to share ideas and problem solve as we network and as we go into breakouts.  Signalling ahead by sketching out a session proposal before and during the summit, has been a useful way for people share their complex technical problems, data-obsessions, semantic conundrums, and what happens in our collective imagination.

    Delegates that have set up their profiles on the website can post a session now.  If you are delegate and you haven’t gotten around to this, or need a little help, please be in touch: LODLAM2017 [at] gmail [dot] com


  9. redazione

    Venice Biennale 2017!

    Robert Rauschenberg, Catch (Urban Bourbon), 1993. Collection Aros Art Museum, Denmark © Robert Rauschenberg Foundation

    R.Rauschenberg, Catch (Urban Bourbon), 1993. Collection Aros Art Museum, Denmark © Robert Rauschenberg Foundation

    Hey LODLAM delegates, you might like to take a look at the Venice Biennale 2017 before or after the Summit!

    The 57th International Art Exhibition is open (and you can download the map!).

    There are 86 nations participating with exhibitions in the historic pavilions in the Giardini at the Arsenale – and – in the historic city centre of Venice.

    Here, dear delegates, following, you can find the links to websites published by many of your own countries, showing artworks in the Biennale exhibitions.  Moreover on May 5th the Financial Times published a “what to see at the Venice Biennale 2017”.  Among the exhibitions recommended that are part of the Venice Biennale, the FT suggests checking out the Robert Rauschenberg and Andy Warhol at the Giorgio Cini Foundation!  Right on the doorstep of where we will all be gathering to talk about linked open data, cultural heritage, and digital humanities.

    The Art News goes a little deeper describing all the exhibitions opening in June at the Cini Foundation.

    The international pavilions:

    We suggest also having a quick scan of The Guardian review on Venice Biennale 2017

    On display, until November 26th, outside the Ca’Sagredo Hotel in Venice, Italian artist Lorenzo Quinn‘s wonderful “Support” sculpture featuring two large hands emerging from the Grand Canal for the Venice art biennale 2017. The massive sculpture aims to make a statement on the effects of global warming.

    Plenty of great art to take in, while you’re at the international 2017 LODLAM Summit in Venice!

  10. valentine charles

    In the race for the final prizes…


    The competition for this year LODLAM challenge was really tough!

    We received in total 21 entries really demonstrating brilliance, innovation and creativity. We can be proud of our community.


    Budapest from “Hungary and Transylvania; with remarks on their condition, social, political and economical, The British Library, Public Domain,

    The five finalists invited to present their work in Venice and running for the final prizes are (in no particular order):

    Genealogy Project

    DIVE+: Explorative Search for Digital Humanities

    Oslo public library


    Fishing in the Data Ocean

    The two winners will be announced at the LODLAM summit on the 29th of June.



Fondazione Giorgio Cini

Linking sponsors


Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation

Supporting sponsors

The Getty
Casalini Libri

Challenge sponsors


Travel awards sponsors

Digital Library Federation


con il patrocinio

With the patronage of

AgID MAECI Alliance of Digital Humanities Organizations ICOM Italia anai
Le città in festa

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