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Evaluating Impact of the PROV Data Model: How Impact Science gathered evidence for REF 2021 for King’s College London and Newcastle University

This impact evaluation was conducted by Impact Science on behalf of King’s College London and Newcastle University. Expert consultation was conducted with personnel from three organisations; AstraZeneca (a leading global biopharmaceutical company), NASA/USGCRP (the Global Change Research Program, responsible for the US National Climate Assessment), and The Gazette (the UK official journal of record, providing information on statutory notices). Through these activities, the project was able to collect and collate important evidence to assess what kind of impact PROV has been having.

Article by: Iain Coleman – 4th August 2020

The Clients

King’s College London (KCL) and Newcastle University are two of the UK’s leading research-intensive universities. KCL ranks among the top universities in the world: founded in 1829, it is a leading research-led institution with 7,200 staff and a turnover of more than £680 million. Newcastle University has nearly 6,000 staff and a turnover of almost £490 million and makes a major contribution as a civic university to the economic, social, and cultural development of the north east of England.

What is Provenance?

Provenance is information about entities, activities, and people involved in producing a piece of data or thing, which can be used to form assessments about its quality, reliability, or trustworthiness. Provenance is the defining information about an entity which verifies its history and authenticity. This is typically done by tracing the relationship between agent, entity, activity; and the time that the activity started and ended.

Academic research into provenance has led to the development of a computerised standard called the PROV data model ontology. The PROV standard is published by the World Wide Web Consortium and its ongoing development has been enabled by research contributions from staff at King’s College London and Newcastle University.


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