The Global ARD Web Ring “ a voluntary coalition of web spaces that share information related to agricultural research and ...
Outline <ul><li>2002-7: the idea of the EGFAR Web Ring  </li></ul><ul><li>2008: the Global ARD Web Ring </li></ul><ul><ul>...
GFAR and EGFAR <ul><ul><li>GFAR  is the Global Forum on Agricultural Research. One of the strategic objectives of the GFAR...
The EGFAR Web Ring - 1 <ul><li>The EGFAR Web Ring was defined in 2002 as “a gateway function to access the GFAR stakeholde...
The EGFAR Web Ring - 2 <ul><li>The EGFAR Web Ring provided (provides): </li></ul><ul><ul><li>a custom full-text search on ...
The Global ARD Web Ring - 1 <ul><li>2007 : ICM4ARD Inter-Regional Consultation and EGFAR Task Force </li></ul><ul><li>Reco...
The Global ARD Web Ring - 2 <ul><li>The Global ARD Web Ring is defined as a “voluntary coalition of web spaces that share ...
Rationale - 1 <ul><li>Agriculture is increasingly becoming knowledge intensive. Information needed by agricultural communi...
Rationale - 2 <ul><li>Current information systems for agricultural development  cannot meet the huge and complex demand  o...
The past (current?) flow of information Information Processed information Information processing Node Gateway Website Data...
The current flow of information Submits data to 1 info system Submits data to 2 systems Research center DB National Instit...
The “voluntary coalition” <ul><li>Information services to meet new demand can be best built through  a network of cooperat...
Architecture of the Web Ring - 1 <ul><li>The ARD Web Ring is best described as a network of ARD related “webspaces” which ...
Architecture of the Web Ring - 2 <ul><li>Websites / information services can have one or more of the following roles: </li...
Architecture of the Web Ring Information Processed information Information processing Node Gateway Website Database Cross ...
Participation - 1 <ul><li>Examples of ways in which partners can participate </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Being included in the c...
Participation - 2 <ul><ul><li>Sharing their documents participating in the new AGRIS or in the Open Archive Initiative lab...
Participation - “Gateways” <ul><li>The aim is that of improving accessibility of the information that is relevant to the g...
Participation - Roles <ul><li>Services built on the Global ARD Web Ring framework can be provided by any of the partners, ...
Role of GFAR <ul><li>Promote and support the adoption of standards that facilitate availability, accessibility and use of ...
Role of GFAR <ul><li>The main information needs of the ARD community have been identified as exact, timely, reliable, acce...
National and regional systems <ul><li>Since many ARD stakeholders usually need information that is strongly characterized ...
Role of NARS <ul><li>STI, scientific publications </li></ul><ul><ul><li>participate in the AGRIS network (FAO Waicent) by ...
Role of NARS <ul><li>Research data (geospatial, crop models etc.) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>adopt standard taxonomies and expo...
Role of NARS <ul><li>Research Management (institutions, projects, experts) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>contribute to sub-regiona...
Role of NARS <ul><li>Extension / outreach / education </li></ul><ul><ul><li>contribute to sub-regional or regional systems...
The Role of the RFs and RAIS <ul><li>STI, scientific publications </li></ul><ul><ul><li>support NARS’ participation in the...
The Role of the RFs and RAIS <ul><li>Research management (institutions, projects, experts) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>promote a...
The Role of the RFs and RAIS <ul><li>Extension / outreach / education </li></ul><ul><ul><li>promote common tools and stand...
The role of FAO <ul><li>The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) has always played a leading role...
The role of the CGIAR <ul><li>The Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) can play a big role in...
The role of existing services <ul><li>Other potential partners are the managers of services, tools and databases that own ...
Thank You Ajit Maru and Valeria Pesce
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The Global ARD Web Ring

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Presented at the IAALD-AFITA-WCCA Conference held in Atsugi (Japan) in August 2008.

The WebRing concept has evolved in the meantime and the resulting service is the CIARD RING, available at: http://ring.ciard.net

A more up-to-date presentation is available here:
http://www.slideshare.net/valeriap/the-ciard-ring-an-infrastructure-for-interoperability-of-agricultural-research-information-services

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  • The Global ARD Web Ring

    1. 1. The Global ARD Web Ring “ a voluntary coalition of web spaces that share information related to agricultural research and innovation for development” Ajit Maru and Valeria Pesce
    2. 2. Outline <ul><li>2002-7: the idea of the EGFAR Web Ring </li></ul><ul><li>2008: the Global ARD Web Ring </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Rationale </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Architecture </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Participation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>How to be part of the Web Ring </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Roles of GFAR and its Partners </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Role of NARS </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Role of Regional Forums and RAIS </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Next Steps? </li></ul>
    3. 3. GFAR and EGFAR <ul><ul><li>GFAR is the Global Forum on Agricultural Research. One of the strategic objectives of the GFAR 2007-2009 BP is knowledge and communication for agricultural research and Innovation. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>EGFAR is the electronic GFAR, including all the electronic tools accessible through the website (the document repository, the newsletter, the mailing list etc.) and the distributed Web 2.0 tools used. </li></ul></ul>
    4. 4. The EGFAR Web Ring - 1 <ul><li>The EGFAR Web Ring was defined in 2002 as “a gateway function to access the GFAR stakeholders’ information resources that are presently available” and a way to establish “a formal link between websites of the key stakeholders” </li></ul>
    5. 5. The EGFAR Web Ring - 2 <ul><li>The EGFAR Web Ring provided (provides): </li></ul><ul><ul><li>a custom full-text search on partner websites; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>harvested news from several partner organizations; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>advanced searches on partner databases in those cases where agreement on protocols and standards has been reached (some databases from FAO, Wageningen International, Infosys); </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>links to relevant sources in other cases </li></ul></ul>
    6. 6. The Global ARD Web Ring - 1 <ul><li>2007 : ICM4ARD Inter-Regional Consultation and EGFAR Task Force </li></ul><ul><li>Recommendations for the evolution of the Web Ring </li></ul><ul><ul><li>A more participatory approach , based on voluntary participation on the part of partners </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Consideration of the changes brought about by (and exploitation of) new technologies and new paradigms (e.g. Web 2.0) in information access, sharing and exchange. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Setting of the project in the context of the Coherence Initiative in Agricultural Research for Development (CIARD; earlier International Information Systems for Agricultural Science and Technology, IISAST) </li></ul></ul>
    7. 7. The Global ARD Web Ring - 2 <ul><li>The Global ARD Web Ring is defined as a “voluntary coalition of web spaces that share information related to agricultural research and innovation for development” </li></ul><ul><li>These web spaces make ARD related information sources more accessible through each other </li></ul>
    8. 8. Rationale - 1 <ul><li>Agriculture is increasingly becoming knowledge intensive. Information needed by agricultural communities now include a wider range of topics and go beyond that available from their local communities </li></ul><ul><li>Greater equity in agricultural information access can contribute significantly to food production and sustainable livelihoods, especially participation in markets, by small producers. </li></ul><ul><li>Globally, all stakeholders to agricultural research and development are demanding cohesive efforts to enable improved availability of and greater equity in access to agricultural and related information </li></ul>
    9. 9. Rationale - 2 <ul><li>Current information systems for agricultural development cannot meet the huge and complex demand of an increasingly knowledge driven agriculture. Current systems are based on individual efforts to make information available that do not necessarily make information more accessible. </li></ul><ul><li>Current information systems suffer from: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>duplication of information (similar overlapping databases) work (maintenance) and subsequent costs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>heterogeneity in knowledge organization and subsequent difficulties in accessing diverse and dispersed knowledge on the part of the final users </li></ul></ul>
    10. 10. The past (current?) flow of information Information Processed information Information processing Node Gateway Website Database Cross searches, federated searches Information service interested in interfacing information from other networks and databases to give customized access to it to its users Database Website Closed network with good internal information flow Network Node with website and database [e.g. WISARD, Infosys+, FAO NARS database] HTML, custom dynamic XML, static export HTML Surveys Data entry Surveys Data entry Complex parsing Web searches
    11. 11. The current flow of information Submits data to 1 info system Submits data to 2 systems Research center DB National Institute Thematic info system DB Regional info system DB National thematic info system Where do I look for the information I need? User ? NALT Agrovoc Special classification Data entry Will our information be visible in all info systems? Research outputs Research data Funding sources Experts Paper Electronic tables Online forms XML files What How
    12. 12. The “voluntary coalition” <ul><li>Information services to meet new demand can be best built through a network of cooperating partners that enable sharing and exchange of information in a coherent and integrated manner. </li></ul><ul><li>The information services will be free and publicly available, thus constituting Global Public Goods that can be leveraged by any organization, person or information service. </li></ul>
    13. 13. Architecture of the Web Ring - 1 <ul><li>The ARD Web Ring is best described as a network of ARD related “webspaces” which may be: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ gateways” (websites or systems that enable value added access to networks or “nodes” of ARD related digital/electronic information through such facilities as search engines, indexes, catalogues, classifications, aggregators, digests etc.) or </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>nodes (websites or systems that may either store and maintain ARD related information or just consume information from other systems). </li></ul></ul>
    14. 14. Architecture of the Web Ring - 2 <ul><li>Websites / information services can have one or more of the following roles: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Expose their own information </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Aggregate external information </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Further process and elaborate aggregated information </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Expose processed aggregated / elaborated information </li></ul></ul>
    15. 15. Architecture of the Web Ring Information Processed information Information processing Node Gateway Website Database Cross searches, federated searches Gateway processing information from distributed sources and exposing processed information [e.g. AgriFeeds, GFAR, SIST] Database Website Search engine [e.g. GFAR GCSE, GFAR institutions search, SIST] Gateway processing and exposing information from an integrated network [e.g. CGIAR, FAO, or Regional Forum gathering information from integrated national systems] Network Search engine [e.g. AGRIS, CG Virtual Library) Node exposing database records [e.g. FAO NARS database] Node with website and database [e.g. WISARD, Infosys+] Node with website, consuming/presenting information
    16. 16. Participation - 1 <ul><li>Examples of ways in which partners can participate </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Being included in the common Directories (organizations, projects etc.) now under development in the context of the Content Management Taskforce (CMTF) of CIARD; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Providing RSS feeds and, more in general, XML or RDF exports of information based on agreed metadata sets; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Providing advanced web services to dynamically generate RSS feeds and, more in general, XML or RDF exports of information. </li></ul></ul>
    17. 17. Participation - 2 <ul><ul><li>Sharing their documents participating in the new AGRIS or in the Open Archive Initiative labelling their repositories or records as ARD related and possibly using common vocabularies. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Building advanced services exploiting the ARD Web Ring framework such as providing wikis, white papers and reviews, indexes, catalogues, bookmarking services, object repositories, alerts etc. </li></ul></ul>
    18. 18. Participation - “Gateways” <ul><li>The aim is that of improving accessibility of the information that is relevant to the gateway and adding value to it, e.g. by: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Selecting and filtering the sources ensuring quality, thematic relevance and broad coverage. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Offering a common browsing or searching interface to different sources. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Interfacing the different knowledge organization systems (KOS) used by the various sources. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Providing integrated services linking entities (organizations, projects, experts, documents) through hyperlinks and relations. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Providing multiple ontologies (thematic – even using different vocabularies, geographic, by type of organization, by information type etc.) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Providing advanced services like digests, bibliographies, best practices, surveys etc. </li></ul></ul>
    19. 19. Participation - Roles <ul><li>Services built on the Global ARD Web Ring framework can be provided by any of the partners, and all partners can be providers of information and value-added services and consumers, or all of these. There will be no hierarchy in the network. </li></ul><ul><li>The partners in this initiative will shape their role according to their mandate, scope, capacities and strengths. </li></ul>
    20. 20. Role of GFAR <ul><li>Promote and support the adoption of standards that facilitate availability, accessibility and use of information (and knowledge) to improve ARD and its impact </li></ul><ul><li>Understand and fulfil the information needs of the ARD stakeholders by improving accessibility of information from the point of view of its users </li></ul>
    21. 21. Role of GFAR <ul><li>The main information needs of the ARD community have been identified as exact, timely, reliable, accessible and semantically rich information on: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Organizations working in ARD </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Experts working in ARD </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Past, ongoing and planned projects in ARD </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Relevant documents in general and project outputs and outcomes in particular </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Donors and funding opportunities </li></ul></ul>
    22. 22. National and regional systems <ul><li>Since many ARD stakeholders usually need information that is strongly characterized geographically and that integrates with other relevant local information, the geographic component in the Web Ring will be relevant, with a national, regional and global approach. </li></ul><ul><li>A very important role in this is played by the Regional Agricultural Information Systems (RAIS) and, within the RAIS, by the National Agricultural Research Systems (NARS). </li></ul>
    23. 23. Role of NARS <ul><li>STI, scientific publications </li></ul><ul><ul><li>participate in the AGRIS network (FAO Waicent) by providing metadata of their publications in the AGRIS AP format; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>participate in the Open Archive Initiative by creating an OAI repository of their publications; using additional agriculture-specific metadata sets would help to create an agriculture community within the OAI </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>adopt more traditional forms of submission to large catalogs and publishing / indexing services (NAL, CABI), if these services agree to play a gateway role for ARD information. </li></ul></ul>
    24. 24. Role of NARS <ul><li>Research data (geospatial, crop models etc.) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>adopt standard taxonomies and export data in standard formats; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>coordinate with the RAIS in order to contribute both to regional databases and global scientific databanks; </li></ul></ul>
    25. 25. Role of NARS <ul><li>Research Management (institutions, projects, experts) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>contribute to sub-regional or regional systems by using the same management software and / or common standards so that directories of institutions, projects and experts can be created at the regional level; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>make the data that they have available in a common format (Applications Profiles for these types of information are already available or under development in FAO); </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>participate in the initiatives promoted by GFAR under its mandate to lead efforts in managing and sharing information on research management, e.g.: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>the AgriOrg Registry, implemented in strict collaboration with FAO and also promoted by the Regional Fora, IAALD, Wageningen International and the CGIAR; </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>the Registry of projects, still under development; </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>the future registries of experts </li></ul></ul></ul>
    26. 26. Role of NARS <ul><li>Extension / outreach / education </li></ul><ul><ul><li>contribute to sub-regional or regional systems by using the same management software and / or common standards so that good information systems can be created at the regional level; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>contribute to global information services built by international organizations or communities like CTA, the Community of Learning (COL), the NRR Division at FAO etc. </li></ul></ul>
    27. 27. The Role of the RFs and RAIS <ul><li>STI, scientific publications </li></ul><ul><ul><li>support NARS’ participation in the AGRIS network or in the Open Archive Initiative, coordinate efforts, promote tools, play a subsidiary role where NARS cannot play their role; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>create regional gateways (e.g. language-based services, or services based on regional critical issues); </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Research data (geospatial, crop models etc.) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>promote standard taxonomies and standard formats for exchanging (e.g., promote geospatial indexing according to GIS format and create geospatial regional information services); </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>create regional databases accessible through web services; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>contribute to global databanks; </li></ul></ul>
    28. 28. The Role of the RFs and RAIS <ul><li>Research management (institutions, projects, experts) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>promote a common management software and / or common standards and implement solutions to create directories of institutions, projects and experts at the regional level; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>make the data that they have available in a common format (Applications Profiles for these types of information are already available or under development in FAO), possibly through web services; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>promote NARS’ participation in the initiatives promoted by GFAR under its mandate to lead efforts in managing and sharing information on research management (the above mentioned AgriOrg Registry, the Registry of projects, the future registries of experts); </li></ul></ul>
    29. 29. The Role of the RFs and RAIS <ul><li>Extension / outreach / education </li></ul><ul><ul><li>promote common tools and standards and implement solutions to create information services at the regional level; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>contribute to global information services built by international organizations or communities like CTA, the Community of Learning (COL), the NRR Division at FAO etc. </li></ul></ul>
    30. 30. The role of FAO <ul><li>The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) has always played a leading role in improving access to scientific publications, especially through AGRIS, and the Open Archive architecture foreseen for the new AGRIS can be a very important component of the Web Ring, as well as all the work on standards documented and promoted on the Agricultural Information Management Standards (AIMS) website </li></ul>
    31. 31. The role of the CGIAR <ul><li>The Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) can play a big role in providing global access to commodity and scientific information through gateways based with the CGIAR International Agricultural Research Centers (IARCs) according to the Centres’ mandates. </li></ul>
    32. 32. The role of existing services <ul><li>Other potential partners are the managers of services, tools and databases that own or give access to relevant information related to agriculture. </li></ul><ul><li>The Wisard and Infosys+ information services , giving access to a large amount of data about agricultural management (organizations, projects, experts), could participate in the ARD Web Ring by improving access to their data through web services. </li></ul><ul><li>Flexible platforms for aggregating and querying information from different sources like SIST could be enhanced and customized for specialized usage with agricultural ontologies and standards. </li></ul>
    33. 33. Thank You Ajit Maru and Valeria Pesce

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