Common Ground: Exploring Compatibilities Between the Linked Data Models of the Library of Congress and OCLC


A co-publication of the Library of Congress and OCLC Research by:


  • Work on the Library of Congress' BIBFRAME vocabulary has advanced nearly to the point of testing its use for original cataloging, which they will be doing later this year.
  • OCLC has published linked data on using both the vocabulary as well as extensions to that vocabulary defined at
  • LC and OCLC continue to work collaboratively to identify the different use cases of these efforts and how they complement each other in a rich bibliographic universe.

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This report will be of interest to anyone wanting to know more about these complementary linked data efforts and how they compare.


Jointly released by OCLC and the Library of Congress, this white paper compares and contrasts the compatible linked data initiatives at both institutions.  It is an executive summary of a more detailed technical analysis that will be released later this year. 

The white paper summarizes the recent activity of the Bibliographic Framework Initiative at the Library of Congress which proposes a data model for future data interchange in the linked data environment that takes into account interactions with search engines and current developments in bibliographic description. It also provides an overview of OCLC’s efforts to refine the technical infrastructure and data architecture for at-scale publication of linked data for library resources in the broader Web. In addition, it investigates the promise of as a common ground between the language of the information-seeking public and professional stewards of bibliographic description.

Suggested citation:

Godby, Carol Jean, and Ray Denenberg. 2015. Common Ground: Exploring Compatibilities Between the Linked Data Models of the Library of Congress and OCLC. Dublin, Ohio: Library of Congress and OCLC Research.

This paper is also available from the Library of Congress website on the BIBFRAME home page at

For more information:

Carol Jean Godby
Senior Research Scientist
OCLC Research

Ray Denenberg
Senior Network and Standards Specialist
Library of Congress

This paper will be discussed at several sessions at ALA Midwinter in Chicago. Learn more »