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Data, Metadata, Narrative. Barriers to the Reuse of Cultural Sources

Part of the Communications in Computer and Information Science book series (CCIS,volume 755)


The networking of objects facilitated by the Internet of Things isn’t new. Every object that is catalogued for display within a GLAM institution is assigned entry-level data, along with further data layers on that object that each interactive agent (researcher) will draw upon to create their research narratives, irrespective of their disciplinary background or bias. Within the community of researchers working with cultural data in particular, the desire to compare and aggregate diverse sources held together by a thin red thread of potential narrative cohesion, is only increasing. This poses challenges to information retrieval and contextualization in the digital age, it forces us to reassess the value and cost of metadata, and the consequences that accompany the use and reuse of digital data in a humanities or cultural research context. This paper discusses a number of the key barriers to the digital representation of complex cultural data and presents the preliminary findings and recommendations of the EU Commission’s Horizon 2020 funded KPLEX project ( in the field of knowledge complexity and cultural data.


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This work has been funded by the European Commission as a part of the Knowledge Complexity (KPLEX) project, contract number 732340. It bears an intellectual debt to Dr. Michelle Doran of the KPLEX project team.

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Correspondence to Georgina Nugent Folan .

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Edmond, J., Nugent Folan, G. (2017). Data, Metadata, Narrative. Barriers to the Reuse of Cultural Sources. In: Garoufallou, E., Virkus, S., Siatri, R., Koutsomiha, D. (eds) Metadata and Semantic Research. MTSR 2017. Communications in Computer and Information Science, vol 755. Springer, Cham.

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  • Print ISBN: 978-3-319-70862-1

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