Library Marc Records Into Linked Open Data: Challenges and Opportunities

Timothy W. Cole, Myung Ja Han, William Fletcher Weathers, Eric Joyner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Today researchers search for books in various ways. Once discovered, a variety of Web technologies can be used to link to related resources and/or associate context with a book. This environment creates an opportunity for libraries. The linked open data (LOD) model of the Web offers a potential foundation for innovative user services and the wider dissemination of bibliographic metadata. However, best practices for transforming library catalog records into LOD are still evolving. The practical utility on the Semantic Web of library metadata transformed from MARC remains unclear. Using a test set of MARC21 records describing 30,000 retrospectively digitized books, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) Library explored options for adding links, transforming into non-library specific LOD-friendly semantics, and deploying as RDF to maximize the utility of these records. This paper highlights lessons learned during this process, discusses findings to date, and suggests possible avenues for further work and experimentation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)163-196
Number of pages34
JournalJournal of Library Metadata
Issue number2-3
StatePublished - Jul 2013


  • MARC
  • RDF
  • Semantic Web
  • bibliographic metadata
  • linked open data

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Library and Information Sciences


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