MPDL Project Registry of Registries

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This project is a direct result of the first eScience seminar on service and information registries (22./23. March 2007, Göttingen) where participants from a wide spectrum of institutes requested that an infrastructure for identifying existing data repositories within the MPG should be specified and deployed. In this context, the "Registry of Registries" pilot project aims for registering all metadata holdings of primary research data of a few institutes representing different communities within the society and to enable cross-disciplinary research by providing a harvesting and search engine environment. Having this possibility of querying various data-sets is of great convenience to the scientist and an adding value to science. Building the portal and integrating the diverse registries in a searchable way is the responsibility of the MPI for Psycholinguistics (MPI PL). The MPDL will be responsible for interfacing to the other participating institutes who will bring in their metadata sets and infrastructures.

As this is a pilot project it is intended to evolve into a general service enabling other institutes to include their own data collections and to actively take part in the further development.

The RoR pilot will exist of the following steps:

  • Collecting all metadata sets and their descriptions from the group of pilot institutes having expressed their interest in collaborating in this project
  • a harvesting machine will gather all metadata records and create a browser based and searchable domain;
  • a MPG specific data category registry based on the ISOcat software will be setup and all concepts will be entered as long as they are not yet part of another open, stable and schema-based registry
  • a flexible framework will be built to register relations between concepts of such registries and to use them; this will be used as the ontology basis for metadata operation in the emerging cross-discipline registry
  • a limited number of existing search engines will be extended so that they make use of the selected relations

The pilot phase is scheduled for two years and will mainly include work from MPDL and MPIPL. The pilot partners will be involved in analyzing and accessing their metadata sets and their usage.

Responsible for the project[edit]

  • Peter Wittenburg, MPIPL
  • Wolfgang Voges, MPDL


The project was approved by the Executive Committee of the Max Planck Society in March 2008.