Towards a Core Ontology for Information Integration
In this paper, we argue that a core ontology is one of the key building blocks necessary to enable the scalable assimilation of information from diverse sources. A complete and extensible ontology that expresses the basic concepts that are common across a variety of domains and can provide the basis for specialization into domain-specific concepts and vocabularies, is essential for well-defined mappings between domain-specific knowledge representations (i.e. metadata vocabularies) and the subsequent building of a variety of services such as cross-domain searching, browsing, data mining and knowledge extraction. This paper describes the results of a series of three workshops held in 2001 and 2002 which brought together representatives from the cultural heritage and digital library communities with the goal of harmonizing their knowledge perspectives and producing a core ontology. The knowledge perspectives of these two communities were represented by the CIDOC/CRM , an ontology for information exchange in the cultural heritage and museum community, and the ABC ontology , a model for the exchange and integration of digital library information. This paper describes the mediation process between these two different knowledge biases and the results of this mediation - the harmonization of the ABC and CIDOC/CRM ontologies, which we believe may provide a useful basis for information integration in the wider scope of the involved communities.