Vol. 11 No. 2 (2020)

Inside the Meanings. The Usefulness of a Register of Ontologies in the cultural Heritage Sector

Chiara Veninata
Istituto Centrale per il Catalogo e la Documentazione (ICCD-MiBACT)

Published 2020-05-15


  • Ontologia,
  • Patrimonio culturale

How to Cite

Veninata, Chiara. 2020. “Inside the Meanings. The Usefulness of a Register of Ontologies in the Cultural Heritage Sector”. JLIS.It 11 (2):45-58. https://doi.org/10.4403/jlis.it-12624.


The article deals with the topic of the semantic web and the publication in linked open data of information relating to cultural heritage. In particular, the article analyzes the ontology registers, i.e. those tools that formally describe the ontological models available on the web and facilitate their retrieval and evaluation, encouraging their reuse and facilitating semantic alignment and interoperability processes. The ontology registers respond effectively to the absence of reference and orientation tools in the conceptual modeling processes of information and have been successfully tested in different domains, but are still unpublished in the cultural sphere.
The examination of the initiatives carried out in the last decade in the field of cultural heritage has clearly highlighted the lack of a consolidated epistemological structure in the conceptual modeling of information resources, despite the numerous ontologies created according to the multiple linked open data publication projects. Consequently, it is often difficult to fully understand all the ontologies available in relation to your area of interest and to obtain in a smooth and systematic way a reliable assessment of their representative capacity and their degree of semantic interoperability.
The analysis of the main registers of ontologies so far created outside the domain of cultural heritage has made it possible to identify and define the requirements of a register of ontologies for cultural heritage, and to elaborate the relative ontology. The clarification of the requirements also took into account a peculiar function that the registers could play in the cultural domain, as tools to support some features of a digital library of cultural heritage.


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