Meetings in Vienna

From Wednesday 2 to Friday 4 March, the OEAW – ACDH (Austrian Centre for Digital Humanities) in Vienna hosted the second joint meeting between Working Groups 2, 5 & 6 of Parthenos. The meeting aimed at presenting and discussing the contents of the report on user requirements (Deliverable 2.1), that was recently submitted. The contents of this report constitute the base for the developing of the Parthenos architecture and services.

The three Working Groups have decided to work closely during the project lifetime. They first met face-to-face in October 2015 in Rome at MIBACT-ICCU (the Central Institute for the Union Catalogue of Italian Libraries and Bibliographic Information) with the goal of sharing a vision for the project, coordinating the activities carried out, and planning the interaction in the development of the report on user requirements. They will meet again face-to-face in about nine months, when Working Groups 5 & 6 will present the first technical developments to Working Group 2, and feedback on these will be collected. In between these meetings, interactions via teleconferences are foreseen.

The meeting

In Vienna, twenty-six participants from different institutions were involved in the discussion, which followed an agenda dedicating the first half of the meeting to the work done by Working Group 2 in their report, with each task leader presenting the chapter he/she had been responsible for. In the second part the floor was given to the technicians of Working Groups 5 and 6, who exchanged their views and defined the main steps towards the initial sketching of the Parthenos architecture, analyzing the use cases and the requirements in the light of the Parthenos entities as defined by Working Group 5.

Laboratory

The meeting opened with an overview on the Parthenos vision presented by Carlo Meghini (National Research Council of Italy and leader of PARTHENOS Working Group 6), as the result of the experience gained through the years working in the design of research infrastructures (RIs). The tight relationship between process, data and scientist represents the basis of this vision, together with the knowledge generation process. As a consequence, the interest is on the generation of knowledge, being constantly able to account for the provenance of the data made available by the infrastructure. Based on this view, the RI should not be viewed as a library, where users would simply go and shop for data, but more as a laboratory where on-going research activities are documented along with the artifacts they produce, such as data, reports, workflows and more.

Next steps

Since the role of Parthenos is to enable the use of services across different domains, it is necessary to agree on a common terminology, in order to reach a mutual understanding across different communities about the services offered, as well as facilitating the communication toward and among the users. At the present time a list of requirements presented by the users is available; the next steps are: collecting a list of services that the RIs involved in the project have to offer, doing a gap analysis to cover all the needs identified; sketching the Parthenos architecture, and setting-up the aggregation infrastructure.

Both the architecture and the initial aggregation infrastructure will be presented in a new report (Deliverable D6.1) on the Parthenos infrastructure, due in October 2016.