The workshop was held on 5th November 2020, 13:00 - 15:30 UTC. The list of the participants is found here.

Introductory remarks, overview of recent developments and objectives for the meeting series can be found in the documentation from the first workshop on 30th June 2020. An introduction to the workshop is found as this recording by Peter Pulsifer from the first workshop on 30th June 2020.


The (reconstructed) agenda was *):

1. Welcome, Housekeeping and Move into break-out rooms

  • Plans for next Polar Data Forum
  • Adding Arctic Spatial Data Infrastructure team as a co-owner of this workshop/hackaton
  • Engaging in SAON ROADS process (Arctic)

Semantics for the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainability

Pier Luigi Buttigieg and Rebekah Ingram 

Presentation on dataset definitions and the progress on getting community input for the data, information, and (digital) knowledge definitions in the Implementation Plan of the United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development 2021 – 2030 (v2.0)

  • Data: A set of values, symbols, or signs (recorded on any type of medium) that represent one or more properties of an entity. For example, the numbers generated by a sensor, values derived from a model or analysis, text entered into a survey, or the raw text of a document.
  • Information: Products derived from data that lead to a greater understanding of an entity. For example, (i) the interpretation of a range of data from an array of conductivity sensors across the Arctic Ocean that informs us about that ocean’s salinity range or (ii) the narrative text of a report on harmful algal blooms that informs the reader on the timing of these blooms
  • Knowledge: An abstract representation (i.e. a mental model) of an entity  which: (i) is constructed from a substantial collection of information, (ii) grants its bearer reliable familiarity with that entity, and (iii) can be used to reason and take action about that entity. For example, an expert with knowledge about the salinity range of the Arctic Ocean (constructed from large amounts of information on the topic) would be able to reason that a salinity value of 43% is a likely error, rather than a real measurement
  • Indigenous and local knowledge: Refers to the understandings, skills and philosophies developed by societies with long histories of interaction with their natural surroundings. For rural and Indigenous peoples, local knowledge informs decision-making about fundamental aspects of day-to-day life. This knowledge is integral to a cultural complex that also encompasses language, systems of classification, resource use practices, social interactions, ritual and spirituality.
  • Digital knowledge: Knowledge, which has been encoded in a machine-readable and actionable form.


Break-out sessions

A joint session between Working Group 1 Federated Search and Working Group 2 Vocabularies and Semantics. The sessions were hosted by POLDER and the ADC-IARPC-SCADM Vocabularies and Semantics Working Group, respectively.

RDA’s Schema Crosswalk

Chantelle Verhey

Presentation on the RDA work on cross-walking existing metadata fields to  

  • Any other products that would be useful for the community?
  • Announcement of Intro to SDO Doc, comments/questions/concerns?

Roadmap for 2021

With 2020 drawing to a close, now is a good opportunity to plan out the broad shape of our activities for 2021, to make sure that POLDER, the Arctic Semantics Group, and the Polar To Global workshops are making strong progress towards interoperability in metadata that will help us get to true federated metadata search. 

Possible items for our roadmap (subject to group discussion):

  • Finalise and publish our best practice guidance for implementation
  • Expand our collection of template records for diverse data types
  • Update the matrix of metadata harvesting relationships, probably via a to-be-developed web interface that feeds the graph of relationships
  • Finalise the paper of recommendations for polar data managers
  • Publish the paper on the results of the harvesting relationships (after the matrix update)

Best Practice Documentation

  • Decision time. Let’s make a list of mandatory fields for our best practice documentation
    • Do we want to have fields that are “mandatory if applicable”? 
    • Do we want to have fields that are “mandatory for purpose”?
    • Do we want to make it mandatory to fill in one of a subset of options?
    • Agree on a standard term for people to fill in if they really can’t fill in a mandatory field because the answer is irrelevant or unknown (e.g. “N/A”, “unknown)
  • Potential fields that we might want to make mandatory:
    • Title
    • Author(s)
    • Owner(s)
    • Spatial information 
    • Temporal information
    • Lineage/authoritative source/sameAs
    • Citation
    • Copyright/ownership statement
    • URL for landing page
    • Unique identifier
    • Version
    • What have we missed?

Finalising discussions on specific fields from the September meeting

  • Which temporal information formats will we support?
  • Which spatial information formats will we support?
  • How to define licencing/ownership statement/copyright



Working Group 3 Policy. Hosted by SCADM, SOOS and the Arctic Data Committee and led by Stein Tronstad.


Reporting from the workshop:

  • Recordings from the joint part of the meeting is found here (the recording of the session starts at around 00:53:30)
  • Recordings from break-out sessions:
    • Joint session: The recording of the session is found here (the recording of the session starts at around 02:20:00)
    • The recording from the session is found here.


*) The original agenda has unfortunately been lost and has been reconstructed.


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