Wednesday, March 7, 2018

CfP: JWS Special Issue on Open Data

Special Issue of the JWS on Open Data

The Journal of Web Semantics seeks submissions for a special issue on Open Data to be edited by Pieter Colpart, Deirdre Lee, Elena Simperl and Jürgen Umbrich.

EXTENDED DEADLINE:  Submissions due April 4th, 2018.

The Open Definition ( defines “open data” in legal terms: anyone should be able to freely access, use, modify, and share the data for any purpose.  Following this definition, the potential of Open Data unfolds when it is widely reused. This is reflected in data policies, which mandate the release of key data assets in the public sector using technologies that encourage reuse.

To achieve this, organisations in the public and private sectors typically have defined an Open Data strategy, established Open Data publication, management and governance processes, and set up Open Data portals that act as central points of access to datasets.  Portals enable data to be found more easily - for example, if the consumer is looking for a dataset of a given publisher, their data portal would probably be the prime address to find that data. The portal would typically provide visitors a number of features for data discovery, including a search bar, a dataset catalog, and dataset metadata and descriptions. Some portals host data from multiple organisations. For those who release their data openly, a portal can be useful in many ways - from hosting reliable URLs to version management and metadata management.

Our understanding of how and how widely open data is reused is patchy.  However, most publishers and portal owners would agree that levels are much lower than ambitioned and that tracking the impact of their data is extremely difficult.  This is also due to several technical challenges, including:
  • Data access uses a range of protocols( e.g. bulk downloads, REST API, single or compressed files);
  • Datasets are published in different formats and refer to different domain ontologies;
  • Metadata often lacks key information, while descriptions are unstructured and of variable quality;
  • Data terms of use and license information are not always easy to find;
  • The tools people use to search and make sense of open data offer a limited user experience.
This Special Issue on Open Data will present a range of papers on how Web Semantics is used to promote Open Data publication and use.
Contributions should be relevant for the journal, which focuses on Web semantics. We are particularly interested in how semantic technologies and applications help solve some of the challenges discussed earlier.

Topics of interest include the following:
  • Dataset description (meta data, e.g. DCAT) and discoverability
  • Semantic labeling of open data
  • CSV on the Web
  • Semantic representations, reasoning and querying of licensing information
  • Semantic data integration
  • Data citation
  • Ontologies for open data initiatives
  • Data quality management
  • Provenance modelling and tracking
  • Advanced search in/over Open Data
  • Knowledge Management on Web-scale

Guest editors

  • Pieter Colpaert, Ghent University,
  • Deirdre Lee, Derilinx,
  • Elena Simperl, University of Southampton,
  • Jürgen Umbrich, Vienna University of Economics and Business,

Important dates

  • Call for papers:   November 2017
  • Submission deadline:   4 April 2018
  • Author notification:   20 June 2018
  • Publication:   Q3 2018

Submission guidelines

The Journal of Web Semantics solicits original scientific contributions of high quality. Following the overall mission of the journal, we emphasize the publication of papers that combine theories, methods and experiments from different subject areas in order to deliver innovative semantic methods and applications. The publication of large-scale experiments and their analysis is also encouraged to clearly illustrate scenarios and methods that introduce semantics into existing Web interfaces, contents and services.

Submission of your manuscript is welcome provided that it, or any translation of it, has not been copyrighted or published and is not being submitted for publication elsewhere. Manuscripts should be prepared for publication in accordance with instructions given in the JWS guide for authors. The submission and review process will be carried out using Elsevier's Web-based EES system. Please select “SI:Embeddings” when reaching the Article Type selection.

Upon acceptance of an article, the author(s) will be asked to transfer copyright of the article to the publisher. This transfer will ensure the widest possible dissemination of information. Elsevier's liberal preprint policy permits authors and their institutions to host preprints on their web sites. Preprints of the articles will be made freely accessible on the JWS preprint server. Final copies of accepted publications will appear in print and at Elsevier's archival online server.