Swedish Open Cultural Heritage (SOCH) is the national aggregator for Sweden, currently contributing over 2,400,000 records from around 45 institutions to Europeana. SOCH ("K-samsök" in Swedish) is a web service which harvests metadata from the databases of cultural heritage institutions in Sweden, indexes and links the data, and then publishes it, allowing third parties to build on and use the data via a web-API. The Swedish National Heritage Board received the SOCH assignment from the government in 2008 and has been working on it ever since.
One of the main purposes of SOCH is also working with linked open data: linking together data sources (for example Wikipedia and the database of the National Library of Sweden), creating a smart, semantic infrastructure for cultural heritage information. This makes searching the material easier and enriches the user experience. Open data refers to the work making sure that metadata and content (for instance digital images) are as free as possible to use, reuse and publish. In SOCH this is clarified with the use of the open license model Creative Commons.
In addition to data publication SOCH offers:
- Advice on best practices for data management,
- Advice on licensing and copyright,
- Advice on metadata description, publication, data enrichment and more,
- Assistance with data mapping,
- Validation of data,
- Monitoring of harvest status, statistics, etc.
Technical conditions for working with SOCH:
- Metadata must be harvestable as XML via OAI-PMH, and mapped to the SOCH data model.
- Metadata must include license for the object itself (preferably CC).
- Digital object must have a source URL with the data provider.
- Data provider must be stable with ongoing data management.
Limitations: Data providers must attribute their metadata with an CC0 license.
Financial conditions: None