Friederike Klan and Alsayed Algergawy (University of Jena, Germany)
The Collaborative Research Centre AquaDiva is targeted towards the question of how environmental conditions and surface properties determine the functional biodiversity of the subsurface as part of the Earth’s Critical Zone. Answering this question requires the evaluation, linking and synthesis of a large volume of data related to a wide range of scientific domains. This is a challenging task, since the involved data are heterogeneous in terms of the terminology that is used to name measured attributes. Moreover, the meaning of these attributes and the relationships between them are typically not explicitly given. Within AquaDiva, we plan to address this issue by mediating information integration and synthesis by means of formal domain knowledge that interlinks semantically annotated data sources. Our focus is not just on structured data such as provided in spreadsheets or relational databases, but also on unstructured information residing in scientific publications or biological models. We intend to develop our solution by creating a knowledge base that reuses existing and established domain ontologies and by providing mechanisms for the (semi-)automatic annotation of research data via the BExIS 2 platform. We plan to implement semantic reasoning and search functionality on top of this extended BExIS 2 system.