How does ARIADNEplus work
The ARIADNEplus catalogue is searchable according to the three facets of “when” (time), “where” (space), “what” (object) and keywords drawn from controlled vocabularies. Searching provides a list of the datasets corresponding to the selection criteria with summary information about their content and a link to the source data, which can thus be accessed by the user according to the rules established by the content owner. The project does not aggregate or move data, but only the metadata of the datasets, which are maintained and controlled by their owners.
At present, about two million datasets have been catalogued, corresponding to a huge amount of information as each dataset may comprise, for example, an entire report with related images, drawings, or a complete database including thousands of individual records. The catalogued content types range from individual finds to monuments and sites inventories and from the report of one single intervention to the results of a long-term archaeological mission.
Access to the catalogue is free.
ARIADNEplus extends ARIADNE in geographic and temporal coverage, and in the range of topics addressed, now incorporating additional information about scientific analyses. It will also provide services to further process and re-use those data. ARIADNEplus is funded to support researchers, but we believe it may be important and useful also for heritage agencies and managers.
The ARIADNEplus Partnership
The 41 ARIADNEplus partners come from 23 European countries, plus 4 international partners.
See which partners come from your country.
Policies and strategies
The ARIADNEplus work plan includes a group of activities dedicated to documenting and proposing relevant policies and strategies for data such as the application of the FAIR principles and the certification of repositories. It will also address some fundamental issues, for example developing guidelines for the creation, management and sustainability of archaeological repositories. There is a European crisis in physical repositories, and a pressing need for guidelines for physical archives, but it is equally important that digital archives are encompassed. Such documents may be of particular interest to heritage managers and their agencies.
Moreover, our activity on policies and strategies includes provisions for training users, researchers and managers alike. To facilitate serving the different communities targeted by these activities, it is planned that the support material, initially prepared in English, will be translated into various EU languages. Such localization will also take into account local regulations and the diverse needs.
In general, the scope of the ARIADNEplus policies and strategies activities is not restricted to research: if there is a specific interest, they can include subjects more related to other remits, such as data for heritage management and site conservation.
Networking and training
Consolidating a comprehensive, active and informed community is one of the goals of the ARIADNEplus project, which envisages a large number of initiatives, such as workshops, sessions at events, meetings and dedicated communication channels.
Particular attention will be dedicated to regions or countries where archaeological dataset creation, processing and management may be less advanced if compared to others: a working group on Central and Southern Europe has already been set up. A similar approach will target groups defined according to their specific needs, for example museums, archaeological sites, and so on; the same will apply to different roles in cultural heritage and archaeology, such as site managers, museum curators, investigators and researchers, teachers, and communicators.
Many of the networking activities include a substantial training component, with the provision of training material both for direct participation, e.g. documentation and guidelines, and for remote participation, e.g. webinars.
The ARIADNEplus training plan also envisages specific training activities. These include tutorials and training workshops, as well as knowledge transfer actions on individual projects, in which a small team is directly supported by ARIADNEplus experts.
All of the training activities have no cost for participants; most of them provide support for travel and subsistence. Training documentation is usually in English, but translations may be provided if there is sufficient request.
Although most of the technology employed in ARIADNEplus concerns the data integration goals of the project, including the creation of the searchable catalogue and the development of a Linked Open Data approach, a key role is played by the data services, which the project will make available. These include tools for data analysis (e.g. for data mining and Natural Language Processing) and for data synthesis, (e.g. visualization of images and 3D, locating data on a map or in time, browsing the data using Linked Data, and so on).
ARIADNEplus uses multilingual vocabularies to enable describing the queries with terms in many languages and searching documents written into languages other than English.
We will also develop a number of pilot applications, to demonstrate service usage in exemplary cases. While unplanned additional services might probably be limited only to extensions of the planned ones, there is ample space for choosing pilot applications which match the needs of heritage managers.
Why ARIADNEplus is important for heritage managers and professionals
Heritage professionals may use the ARIADNEplus catalogue to improve their understanding of the heritage they are in charge of, both exploding any investigation concerned it directly, of by acquiring information about similar cases studied elsewhere. ARIADNEplus may also be of great help in supporting knowledge transfer about the management of archaeological data with its guidelines, guidance to policies and training.
Individual assistance to institutions is also available to create a repository of their digital documentation or to improve its quality and effectiveness. Provision of metadata to the catalogue is free and most welcome, and assistance is available at no cost. Thus the support of ARIADNEplus may help in better pursuing each institution’s own mission and in improving the quality the services they offer. Feel free to contact ARIADNEplus via your local ARIADNEplus partner or via the project’s central offices to receive a personalized answer to your needs.