The following post is from Ian Ibbotson, Coordinator of the new OKF Working Group on Cultural Heritage and developer at Knowledge Integration.

Knowledge of our cultural heritage is captured today by a massive variety of organisations and people. These range from traditional museums to hyperlocal websites and private collections of scanned photos and shared on flickr. This data represents some of the most unique and engaging content available to us. Yet like so much of our digital wealth, there are often barriers to describing, sharing and finding this rich content. Over the years the cultural sector has delivered some amazing data sharing projects, yet there are still issues to be addressed by the community, particularly in the contexts of open and linked data.

In order to try and better engage with the richness of the cultural sector , the OKFN has set up a Cultural Heritage working group and invites participation from anyone with interest in the domain. Our goal is not to compete with existing technical or policy forums, but to promote sharing of information and best practice about the opening up of our cultural heritage. We’re aiming to do this by providing a forum in which anyone interested can exchange ideas or make announcements.

Over the coming months the working group will be finding it’s feet, but our initial focus is to try and map existing open cultural content (Datasets, events, people,…) and to get that information catalogued in CKAN. Participants should feel free to use the WG to disseminate information about available open collections or upcoming events, to ask for advice or just to chat. Our hope is that the working group will be both a motivator and enabler of open cultural content, giving practitioners solid arguments in favor of open heritage and help finding the tools to do it.

The open heritage working group is blogging at, tweeting at and you can join the mailing list at We welcome input from anyone with ideas about the opening up of our cultural heritage.

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