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Title:

Dublin Core Metadata Element Set, Version 1.1: Reference Description

Date Issued:
1999-07-02
Identifier:
http://dublincore.org/documents/1999/07/02/dces/
Supersedes:
http://dublincore.org/documents/1998/09/dces/
Is Superseded By:
http://dublincore.org/documents/2003/02/04/dces/
Latest version:
http://dublincore.org/documents/dces/
Translations: http://dublincore.org/resources/translations/
Status of document:
This is a DCMI Recommendation.
Description of document: This document is the reference description, version 1.1 of the Dublin Core Metadata Element Set. This document supersedes the Dublin Core Metadata Element Set, version 1.0. See the Dublin Core Home Page (http://dublincore.org) for further information about the workshops, reports, working group papers, projects, and new developments concerning the Dublin Core Metadata Element set.

Introduction

The document summarizes the updated definitions for the Dublin Core metadata elements as originally defined in [RFC2413]. These new definitions will be officially known as Version 1.1.

The definitions utilise a formal standard for the description of metadata elements. This formalisation helps to improve consistency with other metadata communities and enhances the clarity, scope, and internal consistency of the Dublin Core metadata element definitions.

Each Dublin Core element is defined using a set of ten attributes from the ISO/IEC 11179 [ISO11179] standard for the description of data elements. These include:

Fortunately, six of the above ten attributes are common to all the Dublin Core elements. These are, with their respective values:

  Version:                1.1 
  Registration Authority: Dublin Core Metadata Initiative
  Language:               en
  Obligation:             Optional
  Datatype:               Character String
  Maximum Occurrence:     Unlimited

The above attributes will not be repeated in the below definitions, however, they do represent part of the formal element definitions.

The definitions provided here include both the conceptual and representational form of the Dublin Core elements. The Definition attribute captures the semantic concept and the Datatype and Comment attributes capture the data representation.

Each Dublin Core definition refers to the resource being described. A resource is defined in [RFC2396] as "anything that has identity". For the purposes of Dublin Core metadata, a resource will typically be an information or service resource, but may be applied more broadly.

Element: Title

  Name:        Title
  Identifier:  Title
  Definition:  A name given to the resource.
  Comment:     Typically, a Title will be a name by which the resource is
               formally known.

Element: Creator

  Name:        Creator
  Identifier:  Creator
  Definition:  An entity primarily responsible for making the content of
               the resource.
  Comment:     Examples of a Creator include a person, an organisation,
               or a service.
               Typically, the name of a Creator should be used to
               indicate the entity.

Element: Subject

  Name:        Subject and Keywords
  Identifier:  Subject
  Definition:  The topic of the content of the resource.
  Comment:     Typically, a Subject will be expressed as keywords,
               key phrases or classification codes that describe a topic
               of the resource.
               Recommended best practice is to select a value from a
               controlled vocabulary or formal classification scheme.

Element: Description

  Name:        Description
  Identifier:  Description
  Definition:  An account of the content of the resource.
  Comment:     Description may include but is not limited to: an abstract,
               table of contents, reference to a graphical representation
               of content or a free-text account of the content.

Element: Publisher

  Name:        Publisher
  Identifier:  Publisher
  Definition:  An entity responsible for making the resource available
  Comment:     Examples of a Publisher include a person, an organisation,
               or a service.
               Typically, the name of a Publisher should be used to
               indicate the entity.

Element: Contributor

  Name:        Contributor
  Identifier:  Contributor
  Definition:  An entity responsible for making contributions to the
               content of the resource.
  Comment:     Examples of a Contributor include a person, an organisation,
               or a service.
               Typically, the name of a Contributor should be used to
               indicate the entity.

Element: Date

  Name:        Date
  Identifier:  Date
  Definition:  A date associated with an event in the life cycle of the
               resource.
  Comment:     Typically, Date will be associated with the creation or
               availability of the resource.  Recommended best practice
               for encoding the date value is defined in a profile of
               ISO 8601 [W3CDTF] and follows the YYYY-MM-DD format.

Element: Type

  Name:        Resource Type 
  Identifier:  Type
  Definition:  The nature or genre of the content of the resource.
  Comment:     Type includes terms describing general categories, functions,
               genres, or aggregation levels for content. Recommended best
               practice is to select a value from a controlled vocabulary
               (for example, the working draft list of Dublin Core Types 
               [DCT1]). To describe the physical or digital manifestation
               of the resource, use the FORMAT element.

Element: Format

  Name:        Format
  Identifier:  Format
  Definition:  The physical or digital manifestation of the resource.
  Comment:     Typically, Format may include the media-type or dimensions of
               the resource. Format may be used to determine the software, 
               hardware or other equipment needed to display or operate the 
               resource. Examples of dimensions include size and duration.
               Recommended best practice is to select a value from a
               controlled vocabulary (for example, the list of Internet Media
               Types [MIME] defining computer media formats).

Element: Identifier

  Name:        Resource Identifier
  Identifier:  Identifier
  Definition:  An unambiguous reference to the resource within a given context.
  Comment:     Recommended best practice is to identify the resource by means
               of a string or number conforming to a formal identification
               system. 
               Example formal identification systems include the Uniform
               Resource Identifier (URI) (including the Uniform Resource
               Locator (URL)), the Digital Object Identifier (DOI) and the
               International Standard Book Number (ISBN).

Element: Source

  Name:        Source
  Identifier:  Source
  Definition:  A Reference to a resource from which the present resource
               is derived.
  Comment:     The present resource may be derived from the Source resource
               in whole or in part.  Recommended best practice is to reference 
               the resource by means of a string or number conforming to a 
               formal identification system.

Element: Language

  Name:        Language
  Identifier:  Language
  Definition:  A language of the intellectual content of the resource.
  Comment:     Recommended best practice for the values of the Language
               element is defined by RFC 1766 [RFC1766] which includes
               a two-letter Language Code (taken from the ISO 639
               standard [ISO639]), followed optionally, by a two-letter
               Country Code (taken from the ISO 3166 standard [ISO3166]). 
               For example, 'en' for English, 'fr' for French, or
               'en-uk' for English used in the United Kingdom.

Element: Relation

  Name:        Relation
  Identifier:  Relation
  Definition:  A reference to a related resource.
  Comment:     Recommended best practice is to reference the resource by means
               of a string or number conforming to a formal identification
               system.

Element: Coverage

  Name:        Coverage
  Identifier:  Coverage
  Definition:  The extent or scope of the content of the resource.
  Comment:     Coverage will typically include spatial location (a place name
               or geographic coordinates), temporal period (a period label,
               date, or date range) or jurisdiction (such as a named
               administrative entity).
               Recommended best practice is to select a value from a
               controlled vocabulary (for example, the Thesaurus of Geographic
               Names [TGN]) and that, where appropriate, named places or time
               periods be used in preference to numeric identifiers such as
               sets of coordinates or date ranges.

Element: Rights

  Name:       Rights Management   
  Identifier: Rights
  Definition: Information about rights held in and over the resource.
  Comment:    Typically, a Rights element will contain a rights
              management statement for the resource, or reference
              a service providing such information. Rights information
              often encompasses Intellectual Property Rights (IPR),
              Copyright, and various Property Rights.
              If the Rights element is absent, no assumptions can be made
              about the status of these and other rights with respect to
              the resource.

References

[DCT1] Type Vocabulary.
<http://dublincore.org/documents/dcmi-type-vocabulary/>

[ISO11179] ISO 11179 - Specification and Standardization of Data Elements, Parts 1-6.
<ftp://sdct-sunsrv1.ncsl.nist.gov/x3l8/11179/>

[ISO639] ISO 639 - Codes for the representation of names of languages.
<http://www.oasis-open.org/cover/iso639a.html>

[ISO3166] ISO 3166 - Codes for the representation of names of countries.
<http://www.oasis-open.org/cover/country3166.html>

[MIME] Internet Media Types.
<http://www.isi.edu/in-notes/iana/assignments/media-types/media-types

[RFC1766] Tags for the Identification of Languages, Internet RFC 1766.
<http://www.ietf.org/rfc/rfc1766.txt>

[RFC2396] Uniform Resource Identifiers (URI): Generic Syntax, Internet RFC 2396.
<http://www.ietf.org/rfc/rfc2396.txt>

[RFC2413] Dublin Core Metadata for Resource Discovery. Internet RFC 2413.
<http://www.ietf.org/rfc/rfc2413.txt>

[TGN] Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names.
<http://shiva.pub.getty.edu/tgn_browser/>

[W3CDTF] Date and Time Formats, W3C Note.
<http://www.w3.org/TR/NOTE-datetime>

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