The PID Graph within the RDA: FREYA/RDA UK Node Workshop

Author: Frances Madden (BL)

On Tuesday 16 July, FREYA and the RDA UK Node teamed up for a workshop on persistent identifiers. With almost 70 delegates, hosted at the Wellcome Trust, the event provided a great opportunity for a UK audience to engage with FREYA's work and the role of the project within the RDA and beyond. This event was the second workshop arranged by the UK node of the RDA which is co-ordinated by STFC and JISC. We heard about the various RDA groups which are relevant to persistent identifiers.

The day began with an overview of the PID landscape. First up was Chris Brown from JISC who spoke about JISC's involvement with PIDs followed by an overview of several RDA interest groups including the proposed new interest group on Open Science Graphs FAIR Data Interest Group of which the PID Graph developed in FREYA is a core component. We also heard from Louise Darroch from the British Oceanographic Data Centre representing the Instruments PID Working Group speaking about their applications and Tobias Weigel from DKRZ talking about Leveraging PIDs from object management in data infrastructures.

Several PID providers then gave updates this included the British Library who are a consortium lead for the UK's DataCite membership. ORCID gave an update about some of their new developments including how they now allow DOI import when authors are manually adding research outputs. Finally Crossref updated on the work they are doing on Grant IDs.

After lunch we heard about several use cases of FREYA partners were using the PID Graph. Christine Ferguson from EMBL-EBI presented work undertaken to support versioning of pre-prints in Europe PMC ( and integrating other PIDs and metadata into the records of those pre-prints. Vasily Bunakov from STFC presented a case study of extracting information from the British Library’s ethesis service EThOS and the repositories of facilities supported by STFC to understand the outcomes of the use of the facilities. Finally, Juan Bicarregui also from STFC provided an overview of how the European Open Science Cloud was going to be built.


RDA UK - FREYA workshop

CC BY-SA, Photo by Christopher Brown 

The afternoon also involved breakout sessions where we discussed the utility of the PID Graph and the RDA’s role in this. One of the key findings was that many groups were discussing what the PID Graph was for and that many of the delegates were unclear on what it can do and what problems it can solve. It has the potential to solve many problems for a variety of users but one of the main uses and examples is the PID Graph’s capability to improve tracking research outputs and building the connections between the different entities. There were requests for information about how to use the graph and some examples of queries. These will become available from the FREYA project as work on the PID Graph proceeds and the usage of it increases.

Another suggestion from the groups which the RDA could assist with was the idea of creating a ‘Compare the Market’ for PIDs to help those who want to use PIDs assess which is the right one for them. Another comment was that the RDA can be difficult to penetrate, particularly for newcomers. One group looked at a summary of the RDA outputs and everyone found there were groups mentioned there they did not know existed. Chris Brown had a suggestion to look at the RDA’s revamped website which has improved the navigation of the different interest and working groups.

Personally I found it a very interesting opportunity to present the PID Graph to a new community of users and to begin to understand its utility to different communities, something we will look to build on in the future. FREYA will be hosting another workshop with another RDA national node, this time in the Netherlands, in November. Slides from the meeting can be found here . A recording of the event will be made available soon.