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Provenance description of metadata application profiles for long-term maintenance of metadata schemas

Chunqiu Li (Graduate School of Library, Information and Media Studies, University of Tsukuba, Tsukuba, Japan)
Shigeo Sugimoto (Faculty of Library, Information and Media Science, University of Tsukuba, Tsukuba, Japan)

Journal of Documentation

ISSN: 0022-0418

Article publication date: 8 January 2018




Provenance information is crucial for consistent maintenance of metadata schemas over time. The purpose of this paper is to propose a provenance model named DSP-PROV to keep track of structural changes of metadata schemas.


The DSP-PROV model is developed through applying the general provenance description standard PROV of the World Wide Web Consortium to the Dublin Core Application Profile. Metadata Application Profile of Digital Public Library of America is selected as a case study to apply the DSP-PROV model. Finally, this paper evaluates the proposed model by comparison between formal provenance description in DSP-PROV and semi-formal change log description in English.


Formal provenance description in the DSP-PROV model has advantages over semi-formal provenance description in English to keep metadata schemas consistent over time.

Research limitations/implications

The DSP-PROV model is applicable to keep track of the structural changes of metadata schema over time. Provenance description of other features of metadata schema such as vocabulary and encoding syntax are not covered.


This study proposes a simple model for provenance description of structural features of metadata schemas based on a few standards widely accepted on the Web and shows the advantage of the proposed model to conventional semi-formal provenance description.



This study is supported in part by JSPS Kaken Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research (A) (Grant No.:16H01754). The authors express sincere thanks to Professors Atsuyuki Morishima, Tetsuo Sakaguchi, Mitsuharu Nagamori, Mr Tsunagu Honma, Dr Tetsuya Mihara, and all the members of the laboratory for their useful comments and help to this study.


Li, C. and Sugimoto, S. (2018), "Provenance description of metadata application profiles for long-term maintenance of metadata schemas", Journal of Documentation, Vol. 74 No. 1, pp. 36-61.



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