Semantic Scholarly Publishing and Discourse: Tools for Modelling Contested Knowledge Domains

   Simon Buckingham Shum, Knowledge Media Institute, The Open University, UK

Seminar on People, Computers, and Design
Stanford University April 16, 2004

In 2010, will research still be published primarily as prose? This question is designed to focus imagination on a complementary infrastructure that is 'native' to the network paradigm, enabling new kinds of knowledge dissemination, peer review, debate, and analysis of ideas. In this talk I report on the progress of the Scholarly Ontologies project, which has been building an environment to enable analysts to model the contested claims and arguments in a field. End-user communities that we are targetting include students, educators, researchers, consultants, librarians and publishers, working individually or collaboratively. I describe the rationale behind the underlying discourse representation scheme, user interfaces designed to deliver a semantic annotation environment that is usable by people who are not ontology engineers, and the new kinds of search and visualization services that become possible when a research field is rendered as an argument network.

Simon Buckingham Shum is a Senior Lecturer at the Open University’s Knowledge Media Institute, UK. His background is in Psychology (B.Sc. 1987, York), Ergonomics (M.Sc. 1988, UCL) and Software Design Rationale (Ph.D. 1991, York). He leads projects focused around the user-centred application of hypermedia discourse to e-Learning, e-Science, e-Publishing and knowledge management. He has convened a number of workshops on hypermedia discourse including 1st Int. Workshop on Scholarly Hypertext (ACM Hypertext 2003), HypACoM: Hypertext Augmented Collaborative Modelling (ACM Hypertext 2002), and Computer-Supported Collaborative Argumentation for Learning Communities (CSCL 1999). These have formed the basis for a recent book on Visualizing Argumentation. Website:


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