GloSIS: The Global Soil Information System Web Ontology

Tracking #: 3589-4803

This paper is currently under review
Raúl Palma
Bogusz Janiak
Luís M. de Sousa
Kathi Schleidt
Tomáš Rezník
Fenny van Egmond
Johan Leenaars
Dimitrios Moshou
Abdul Mouazen
Peter Wilson
David Medyckyj-Scott
Alistair Ritchie
Yusuf Yigini
Ronald Vargas

Responsible editor: 
Boyan Brodaric

Submission type: 
Full Paper
Established in 2012 by members of the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), the Global Soil Partnership (GSP) is a global network of stakeholders promoting sound land and soil management practices towards a sustainable world food system. However, soil survey largely remains a local or regional activity, bound to heterogeneous methods and conventions. Recognising the relevance of global and trans-national policies towards sustainable land management practices, the GSP elected data harmonisation and exchange as one of its key lines of action. Building upon international standards and previous work towards a global soil data ontology, an improved domain model was eventually developed within the GSP [54], the basis for a Global Soil Information System (GloSIS). This work also identified the Semantic Web as a possible avenue to operationalise the domain model. This article presents the GloSIS web ontology, an implementation of the GloSIS domain model with the Web Ontology Language (OWL). Thoroughly employing a host of SemanticWeb standards (SOSA, SKOS, GeoSPARQL, QUDT), GloSIS lays out not only a soil data ontology but also an extensive set of ready-to-use code-lists for soil description and physio-chemical analysis. Various examples are provided on the provision and use of GloSIS-compliant linked data, showcasing the contribution of this ontology to the discovery, exploration, integration and access of soil data.
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