D5.1: Discovery and re-use of Nordic community specific data in EOSC
The FAIR principle F4 states that (Meta)data are registered or indexed in a searchable resource. Such a searchable resource becomes a kind of exhibit window of the data in question, from which references to the metadata and data should be available. Metadata portals of this kind can be either discipline-specific or generic, covering a number of research areas and a multitude of data types, as they do not contain the actual data as such. In the context of EOSC, the EUDAT indexing and search service B2FIND constitutes such a resource, offering indexing of metadata from across disciplines and metadata formats.
In a world where many data resources with their corresponding metadata have been created throughout several years, also before the FAIR principles were published, harvesting and exposing a multitude of data resources from various disciplines can be a challenge. In the context of EOSC, it is desirable to streamline this process as much as possible, even as no single standard exists or can be anticipated. The goal of the work reported here has been to try to create and test a general usable recipe for exposing research data in B2FIND, based on a use case of Nordic archaeological repositories.
For this purpose, we have harvested metadata for the Danish Fund og Fortidsminder collection into B2FIND. As this is an older resource, it was not a trivial task but offered technical challenges. How to deal with these challenges in close collaboration between the research community and B2FIND people constituted a major part of the work, resulting in parts of the report being rather technical. Non-technical readers are advised to skim or read through these paragraphs lightly. The level of adaptation to the specific use case performed through this technical work indicates that the generic “cookbook” that we tried to extract in the last paragraph, can only serve as a starting point.
Other parts of the report cover the B2FIND service and the scientific use case in more general terms. We furthermore report results of using FAIR evaluator tools to explore indications of increased FAIRness of metadata being exposed through B2FIND.
The scientific context of the work is a vision of creating a common Nordic resource for archaeology, which is also being presented. The fulfillment of this vision will be further pursued in future work, which will include adding archaeological metadata from other Nordic collections to B2FIND. Future work could also include harvesting other types of Nordic repositories, aiming to cover geographically across the Nordic countries.