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About the Rare Materials Ontology Extension

In conjunction with the ACRL Rare Books and Manuscript Section's Bibliographic Standards Committee (RBMS-BSC), Cornell University Library is leading an effort to build an ontology extension for the description of rare materials. This collaborative effort is intended to provide RBMS-BSC with a model for handling the complexity of rare materials, particularly item-level description not addressed in BIBFRAME 2.0 or bibliotek-o. Adoption and usage of the Rare Materials Ontology Extension will be determined by RBMS-BSC following initial development and assessment.

For a number of modeling areas, such as provenance and physical description, the Rare Materials Ontology Extension group is partnering with ArtFrame; the two groups have overlapping use cases. Building off of BIBFRAME 2.0, the Rare Materials Ontology Extension will reuse existing ontologies, such as bibliotek-o and the Web Annotations data model, in addition to minting terms where the correct semantics are not available in other ontologies.

For questions or comments, please contact Jason Kovari, Director of Cataloging & Metadata Services, Cornell University Library: jak473 [ at ] cornell dot edu

Cornell Project Proposal

View RareMat's work on GitHub

Current Activities

Analysis/Modeling (Collaborations with ArtFrame)

  • Bindings
  • Carriers & Bound-withs
  • Exhibitions
  • Markings and Autographs
  • Resource-to-Relationship mappings

Community Engagement

  • Continue efforts with RBMS Bibliographic Standards Committee

Completed Work

Use Case Development




Amber Billey (Bard College)
Amy Brown (Boston College)
Todd Fell (Yale University)
Steven Folsom (Cornell University)
Peter Green (Princeton University)
Linda Isaac (University of Miami)
Jason Kovari (Team Lead. Cornell University)
Margaret Nichols (Cornell University)
Michelle Paquette (Stanford University)
Audrey Pearson (Yale University)
Timothy Thompson (Yale University)
Rebecca Younes (Cornell University)

  • Ontology extension to BIBFRAME 2.0 + bibliotek-o for describing rare materials and sound recordings
  • Data models for handling materiality, provenance, annotations and other concepts relevant to describing rare materials
  • Ontology documentation, including modeling illustrations

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