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. 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.

  2. 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.
  3. 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


  4. 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!

  5. 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.


  6. valentine charles

    LODLAM Technical Challenge: Time to pick your favourite !


    The call for challenges entries is closed and it is now time to vote. Which LOD project  highlights the most innovative ideas, the most interesting data sets, the best visualisation ? Tell us which one is your favourite by adding your ratings on challenge entries’ pages.

    The five finalists will be invited to pitch their project during the LODLAM Summit in Venice (28- 29 June) and to a panel of judges who will choose the two winning teams. More details at

    L'urne, Bibliothèque nationale de France, Public Domain

    L’urne, Bibliothèque nationale de France, Public Domain

    1. Infoseg
    2. Genealogy Project
    3. DIVE+: Explorative Search for Digital Humanities
    4. CWRC / Muninn
    5. LOD Navigator
    6. Oslo public library
    7. WarSampo
    8. PROVisualizer People!
    9. aLOD
    10. JazzCats
    11. Cobis Linked Open Data Portal
    12. ResearchSpace
    13. Annif
    14. TrinkerMedia
    15. City-Zen
    16. Tag The Web
    17. TALDIS. Time and Linked Data in Space
    18. Telemeta
    19. WITH
    20. Fishing in the Data Ocean

    If you have any questions, please email Valentine Charles the 2017 LODLAM Technical Challenge Coordinator.


  7. Ingrid Mason

    People in Linked Open Data


    People matter and representing “people” in data and turning that into linked open data is no small feat.

    Some simple examples: historical figures or people in the public sphere; creator’s of scholarly works, artworks, music; collaborators, contributors, or partners in the creation process or participants an activity or event; and characters in play or personas.  There are many in the LODLAM community working with data about people and either using or keen to use persistent identifiers (their own and others) to aid with enriching their datasets for greater discovery and interoperation.

    Concert in St. Mark's Place, Venice, Italy (Detroit Publishing Company, 1905) | Library of Congress

    Concert in St. Mark’s Place, Venice, Italy (Detroit Publishing Company, 1905) | Library of Congress

    With this in mind, the program committee for the 2017 Summit have been in touch with key practitioners and leaders in the LODLAM community to test out an interest in having a post Summit meeting on the use person identifiers and data about people.

    The rationale behind this outreach has been to understand if the community has an interest in and is ready for a wide ranging discussion on the capture and use of people data including persistent identifiers as part of their linked open data practices, and, critically, to work more concertedly as a community of practice.

    For example, whether the community are ready to work together internationally to:

    • Collate the different approaches to capturing and sharing data about people and the use and linking of local and persistent identifiers
    • Establish a shared public resource for these different practices to boost capacity to undertake linked open data initiatives that involve data about people
    • Establish a working group to optimise capacity for international interoperation around data about people and best practices in diverse contexts

    The feedback to date has been strong and positive from those we have been in touch with.  The program committee are confident in proposing session at the summit to discuss the use of data about people and persistent identifiers, so we as a community can explore how practices differ and where we might like to work together. With this is mind (and with the generous support of the Cini Foundation) an extra half day has been added for a satellite meeting for 15 summit delegates (the day after the LODLAM summit) should options for further planning around international interoperation arise from the community discussion at the summit.

    Election Night Crowd, Wellington, 1931 | National Library of New Zealand

    Election Night Crowd, Wellington, 1931 | National Library of New Zealand

    The LODLAM community are a wonderful mix of representatives working in cultural institutions, universities, in public and community services, and commercial organisations, with a range of viewpoints and goals.

    Working together around data about people is an ambitious and important move.

    But it seems apt that this kind of humanities initiative comes from a community that is passionate about making societal knowledge, culture, and history discoverable, shareable, reusable, and contestable.

    It will be up to the delegates from the LODLAM community attending the Summit to determine whether the 2017 LODLAM Summit in Venice is the event that kicks off a community of practice around capturing and sharing data about people and an international working group to advance that goal, with the community support as a driving force behind that.

  8. Ingrid Mason

    LODLAM Summit 2017 goes to Europe!


    Where is this Linked Open Data Odyssey taking you, and, where is it taking us all?

    The LODLAM Summit 2017 is going to take us to Europe.

    Save the date: 28-29 June 2017!

    Late Summer on the Grand Canal, Venice, Italy. Trish Hartmann. 2013

    Late Summer on the Grand Canal. Trish Hartmann. 2013 CC-BY

    Is it time to say that we, as a community, have enough confidence in what we have done, what we have shared, and what we now know works, to set upon another chapter in this adventure together?

    We hope so!

    For those that are yet join in on the action, here are three reasons to be at the LODLAM Summit 2017.

    Courage is at the fore when you’re leading and participating in cultural change. Make no mistake about it, the reason a person tackles new approaches, goes to extra lengths and raises their hand to be a LODLAM Summit supporter, whether a delegate, challenge participant, sponsor, or coordinator, is because it is an opportunity to be part of that exciting change.

    Learning is easy when you’re in a room with people who are open to new ideas, debate, connections, sharing ideas and developing expertise. Being in the room at the LODLAM Summit with people who are passionate about what they do, are slightly obsessed with data and technology, keen to liberate cultural heritage data, and enjoying the journey of discoverysunshine, potholes, and allis fantastic.

    Community in action is when there seems to be a magnetic vibe that pulls you all together and draws on every drop of brilliance, energy, skill, and opportunity in a network of people. Where we, the community, decide to go is up to us.

    LODyssey Trip 2015 at Europeana. L to R: Antoine Isaac, Ingrid Mason, Valentine Charles, Rowan Brownlee, Hugo Manguinhas.

    LODyssey Trip 2015 at Europeana.

    We are really looking forward to being at the Linked Open Data: Libraries, Archives, Museums Summit 2017. Not the least because the Summit is being held in dreamy Venice and our generous hosts will be the Cini Foundation, but also because as a community, the progress we make is inspiring and to be celebratedbecause there is so much more that we can do together.

  9. Silvia Mazzini

    LODLAM Summit in Venice

    San Giorgio Maggiore by Twilight by Claude Monet, 1908 | Public domain

    San Giorgio Maggiore by Twilight by Claude Monet, 1908 | Public domain

    Once again, a chance conversation produces a brilliant idea. This time a successful collaboration between Cristina Pattuelli (Pratt Institute, New York) and me (Regesta, Rome) led to a conversation about other projects we could work on together. The conversation turned to LODLAM and our desire to see it hosted in Europe.

    Suddenly, the lightbulb turned on, the challenge was accepted, and we set about planning to host the 2017 international LODLAM summit in Venice. If Venice alone — with its stunning architecture and magical canals — isn’t enough to attract attendees, the magnificent Giorgio Cini Foundation, on the island of San Giorgio Maggiore, will be the site of the summit. Once a working Benedictine monastery, the Cini has been transformed into a cultural institute and meeting place for the most esteemed intellectuals, artists, politicians and economists.

    The Cini’s own exceptional cultural heritage collections and their work at the forefront of digital humanities are guaranteed to inspire and enrich participants’ experience. We invite you to explore and learn more about this magnificent locale and start making plans to join us in Venice for the 2017 LODLAM Summit, June 28-29.


    Paolo Veronese, Le nozze di Cana, olio su tela, 1563. Il dipinto venne realizzato per la parete del refettorio progettata da Palladio nel complesso di San Giorgio Maggiore. Nel 1797 fu prelevato da Napoleone per essere trasferito al Louvre, dove è tuttora esposto. Oggi la Fondazione espone una perfetta riproduzione dell’originale, in tela.

    Paolo Veronese, The Wedding at Cana, oil on canvas, 1563. The painting was created for the wall of the refectory designed by Palladio for the Benedictine monastery. In 1797 it was taken by Napoleon and transferred to the Louvre, where it is still on exhibition today. The Cini Foundation has created a facsimile on a one-to-one scale —a ‘second original’ – and placed it in the setting for which it was originally conceived. Challenging the notion of “aura” 


Fondazione Giorgio Cini Europeana

Linking sponsors


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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