Keywords helping to ensure precise metadata for Earth Science data and services

Categorised: ENGAGE, News

Published by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and adopted internationally as a de facto standard for describing earth science datasets, the Global Change Master Directory (GCMD) Keywords are now available to Australian researchers. The Australian Research Data Commons (ARDC) provides users in the southern hemisphere access to NASA’s GCMD via our Vocabulary Service.  

These Keywords are described as a hierarchical set of controlled earth science vocabularies, ensure that earth science data and services are being described consistently and comprehensively. This allows for the precise searching of collection-level metadata (a more granular way to store data that records context ie. describes the data collections, datasets, etc) and subsequent retrieval of data and services.  

Already in use by organisations such as the Australian Oceanographic Data Centre, CSIRO, Geoscience Australia, and Terrestrial Ecosystem Research Network, the Keywords comprise of a rich set of vocabularies covering earth science topics, data centres, projects, and platforms. To date, these Keywords feature the following categories:

  • Earth Science and Earth Science Services
  • Chronostratigraphic Units
  • Data Centers
  • Horizontal Data Resolution
  • Instruments/Sensors
  • Locations
  • Projects
  • Platforms/Sources
  • Temporal Data Resolution
  • URL Content Types
  • Vertical Data Resolution

You can easily access the Keywords (either as a combined set or separately) via a web browser, Linked Data API, or SPARQL endpoint. You can also add the data classification capability to your web pages via the ARDC vocabulary widget.  

If you’d like more information, contact services@ardc.edu.au or read more from NASA about the GCMD, and how to cite the GCMD.

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