Simple Knowledge Organization System (SKOS)

SKOS or Simple Knowledge Organization System is a formal data model developed by World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) to enhance linked open data in the (semantic) web. It is a standard that translates knowledge information systems such as thesauri, classification systems etc. in RDF-triples (SKOS/RDF). Controlled vocabularies structure information via hierarchical, equivalence and associative relations and contain scope notes, translations and other additional information on specific terms. This information can be made accessible on the web when the controlled vocabulary is converted to SKOS. In SKOS the term and all the information it contains is expressed in URIs. This is why in SKOS they are called concepts. In a controlled vocabulary, the term is important, whereas in SKOS, the URI is important. URIs form the basis of linked data on the web.

Conversion to SKOS requires some technical knowledge of RDF and SKOS. This is why the Linked Heritage and AthenaPlus projects developed a Terminology Management Platform (TMP), an open-source tool where controlled vocabularies can be imported and link them to other resources using SKOS.

Explore further the Linked Heritage learning objects: Terminology and Linking Cultural Heritage Information.

See also: Controlled vocabulary, Linked data, Linked open data, Resource Description Framework (RDF), Semantic Web, Terminology Management Platform (TMP)

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