ALA Cartographic Resources Cataloging Interest Group
American Library Association Midwinter Conference
Jan. 27, 2013
Discussion on the suitability of Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH) for describing geospatial data sets in the OpenGeoportal (OGP). Many institutions involved with OGP use LCSH to describe themes in the metadata for geospatial data layers. There is a problem of data layers needing more specific subject keywords than what are available in LCSH. The question was posed to the Interest Group as to whether the OGP metadata community should make an effort to address gaps in LCSH through the SACO program or whether they would be better served looking toward other thesauri (e.g. Getty, GNS, etc.) for more specific description of geospatial resources. The consensus of the group favored applying relatively broad LCSH terms when possible and using also other thesauri for more specific terminology when appropriate. It was determined that the SACO program may not be effective for a full-scale geospatial data keyword effort. Marc McGee will report on the discussion to the OGP Metadata Working Group which will determine next steps toward addressing OGP thesaurus needs.