VIVO, Citations, and Alternative Facts
presentationposted on 09.08.2017, 22:16 authored by Don ElsborgDon Elsborg
Too often one reads a web news article that might reference new academic research where the research isn’t even cited. Many times politicians clammer that the “data isn’t in” regarding topics like Climate Change. Other times one can reference a news media article and it actually utilizes data or research in a manner that is out of context. Academic institutions are beginning to leverage their stores of complex research metadata by exposing views into their knowledge management systems that can enable policy makers and journalists to find, reference, and connect with the subject matter experts at their institutions. A case in point is Brown University’s Rhode Island Innovative Policy Lab (riipl.org) project. Their mission statement states that “By developing a sophisticated suite of cutting-edge science and technology, we build and navigate complex databases, we design and test policy innovations to improve equity and opportunity.” As institutions provide more publicly accessible metadata, questions arise as to how the data will be used by end users like Journalists and Policy Makers. What are the needs to make the data more findable, properly formatted, and persistent. VIVO is positioned to be a platform of choice for disseminating academic institutional metadata for news information media and public policy maker consumption. VIVO sites are open sourced, holding vast amounts of metadata of the collective works of subject matter experts in every discipline. VIVO stores and disseminates this data using well known vocabularies hence it minimizes issues of ambiguity such as is found doing simple Google searches. VIVO is extensible such that domain specific metadata can be added to any VIVO site. Using these vocabularies any and all VIVO sites can be crosswalked and connected to provide a view into real peer review academic research that provides the most “factual” representation of a subject that is possible. This panel will discuss the needs, uses, issues, and promise of VIVO to provide information and citations in this age where the idea of factual knowledge is being challenged.