I'm currently part of George Washington University's BIBFRAME
implementation testbed group ( and I can assure
you that there are some of us who are actively working to try and get
archival objects described correctly in this environment.

There are a lot of unresolved issues with BIBFRAME right now, so it's very
much a work in progress.

There's a lot of promise here - specifically the ability to link
individually described materials to the collection from which they draw
their provenance - but a lot of the issue seems to be centered around how
to classify archival collections since many institutions arrange and
describe them differently. There has been some talk of a "Super-Work" or
"Collection" level that exists above the Work level in the BF model, or
alternatively a Collection as a specific type of the Work class, but we're
not convinced that adding additional levels is the right move (and many are
actively against it, since that would undo some of the move from the WEMI
model to the W-I model).

There are also some interesting parallel possibilities with EAC-CPF and the
Authority model of Bibframe, though to my knowledge those connections have
not yet been fully explored.

I've been following Ethan Gruber's work on transforming EAD into RDF!msg/lod-lam/sIrCqZPaZ8c/sGOAFZSkBBgJ),
which is probably going to be a necessary step if EAD is going to be
compatible with BF.

My personal feeling is that we might need to sunset EAD and move to a
different description standard that better integrates with linked data, but
obviously that's a massive effort. EAD always seemed to me to be, frankly,
the way to electronically re-create the paper finding aid. Maybe that's
being unfair, but we can do so much more with our data. We need to be
thinking less "how can I make my finding aids work in a world of linked
data?" and more "how can I get my data into this network?" The finding aid
is just one way to do it.

I'm happy to answer questions about BF (as best I can) and bring
suggestions to both our testbed and to the larger implementation group.

Thank you,

Nick Connizzo
Digital Archivist
Special Collections Research Center, Gelman Library
2130 H. Street NW, Washington DC 20052
[log in to unmask]

On Thu, Jul 31, 2014 at 11:36 AM, Megan McShea <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> Thanks, Glenn, for posting this announcement to this list. I'd be very
> curious in general to hear whether EAD users have been following BIBFRAME
> developments, and how they see the potential relationship between BIBFRAME
> and EAD.
> My sense is the hierarchical nature of EAD, and the often relative (rather
> than absolute) component titles used in archival description, makes the
> exploitation of EAD-encoded description difficult in a linked data
> environment. However, looking at the model online
> ( it seems designed to exploit
> relationships between entities specifically, so maybe this could lend
> itself
> to re-framing hierarchical description for linking.
> Then again EAC-CPF, and single-level EAD, seem better suited for linked
> data
> in general.
> From the BIBFRAME listserv, however, apart from Kate Bowers (way to
> represent!) there don't seem to be many participants familiar with the
> variables and structure of archival description.
> I'd be very interested in hearing what people on this list are thinking
> about this subject.
> Thanks,
> Megan McShea
> Audiovisual Archivist
> Archives of American Art