Metadata Improvement Lab


Complete documentation of scientific data is the surest way to facilitate discovery and reuse, particularly if you use a metadata dialect that has been standardized. What is complete metadata though? How can you be sure that what you include in the metadata is not only relevant to your organization’s work, but understandable to your scientific community and beyond?

In this session we will be demonstrating a process to analyze the content of metadata in many standard dialects with respect to over 20 different recommendations of particular interest to the earth, space, and ecological scientific communities. You only need a connected web browser or Microsoft Excel to participate in this hands-on activity.

Participants can use metadata collections from their own organizations as long as it is submitted in advance, but we will also provide some sample data if you just want to drop in. Please contact Sean Gordon for submission details. I will use XSL prior to the lab to mine the collections for concept content.

In the lab you will learn how to utilize the resultant data and a recommendation’s concepts to assess the completeness of records in the collections, and how to use that information to inform an iterative design process to improve the completeness of current records and prepare future metadata creation for success. 

More information:


This was an interactive workshop so there are no significant notes. If you'd like to use the excel "program" Sean has developed, he's happy to share it with you, but note that it's just a proof of concept at this point and pretty kludgey so it may not be the easiest to use currently. If you do use it, please let him know if you found it helpful, etc. -- fodder for developing it with a real programming language, etc.! Contact Sean at [email protected]

File [email protected]10.15 MB
Metadata Improvement Lab; 2016 ESIP Summer Meeting. ESIP Commons , April 2016