Linked Open Usable Data for Cultural Heritage: Perspectives on Community Practices and Semantic Interoperability

Project Description

In the present study, two research axes or perspectives have been identified to investigate Linked Open Usable Data (LOUD) for Cultural Heritage, the first axis focusing on community practices, i.e. assessing the mechanisms by which organisations, individuals and apparatuses are entangled in consensus-making, and the second on semantic interoperability, i.e. how to make data meaningful to machines in a standardised and interoperable manner. Examples of LOUD standards are the International Image Interoperability Framework (IIIF) - especially the IIIF Presentation API 3.0, Linked Art and the W3C Web Annotation Data Model. The thesis is grounded as part of the Participatory Knowledge Practices in Analogue and Digital Image Archives (PIA) research project, which aims to develop a Citizen Science platform around three photographic collections of the Swiss Society for Folklore Studies (SSFS). The theoretical framework of the thesis is situated through and beyond an Actor-Network Theory (ANT) lens, a constructivist approach mainly defined by Bruno Latour, as one of the objectives is to describe the associations between actors and the social fabrics of the LOUD ecosystem as well as to highlight the importance of nonhuman actors. "Beyond ANT", as it draws as well on the work of Anna Haraway (Situated Knowledges) and Susan Leigh Star (Boundary Objects) amongst others, which should provide an avenue to critically examine LOUD and their underpinning technologies and communities.

Supervisor:  PD Dr. Peter Fornaro
Co-Supervisors: Prof. Dr. Walter Leimgruber, Dr. Robert Sanderson (Yale University)

Short Bio

Julien A. Raemy works as a Project Assistant and Doctoral Student at the Digital Humanities Lab of the University of Basel as well as Interoperability Specialist for DaSCH - Swiss National Data and Service Center for the Humanities. Within the Participatory Knowledge Practices in Analogue and Digital Image Archives (PIA) research project, he is involved in the extension of the data infrastructure, the uptake of the International Image Interoperability Framework (IIIF) as well as designing the data model. He obtained a BSc (2017) and a MSc in Information Science (2020) from the Haute école de gestion de Genève (HEG-GE). He previously worked as a Research and Teaching Assistant in Information Science at the HEG-GE (2017-2021), as IIIF Systems Architect for the Swiss Art Research Infrastructure (SARI) coordinated at the University of Zürich (2020) as well as Photo Archivist at the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) in the context of the Montreux Jazz Digital Project (2015-2017). Furthermore, he is a member of the IIIF Technical Review Committee and the IIIF Coordinating Committee as well as being an active member of the Archival Resource Key (ARK) Alliance.

Further Information

Research Areas: Cultural Heritage, Citizen Science, Information Interoperability, Knowledge Representation, Linked Open Data, Science and Technology Studies

More information on

Portrait Image

Julien Antoine Raemy
PhD Candidate
Fachbereich Digital Humanities
Universität Basel
Digital Humanities Lab
Spalenberg 65
4051 Basel