Use Case International Registry for Authors

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International Registry for Authors


CIEPI. International Centre for the Research of Strategy and Information Prospective Contact person: Tomas Baiget,

Background and Current Practice

One of the main pillars for the scientific information retrieval are author’s names. The problem of the inconsistencies in the authors' signatures has been around for many years, but its importance is increasing due to the great number of people publishing research studies and papers. For this reason, standardization is now a highly relevant aspect, more than ever. IraLIS works to make authors aware of the need to always sign in the same way. In the case of the Spanish people –including Latin American-, the problem is increased since: a. there are more choices in deciding a signature format because Spanish people use two family names (and sometimes also two given names), and b. the main family name (the one from the father) is written in the middle of the signature. As a consequence, database producers, following accepted standards procedures worldwide, index Spanish authors by their second name instead of the first. This is a "wrong" way for the traditional Spanish habits. IraLIS aims to help to reduce this serious distortion in the compilation of bibliographies as far as possible in three ways:


(1) what is achieved in the scenario without reference to linked data

  • By creating a register of names of authors to help to locate the different variants. The register will incorporate both those that an author may have used, and those that may have been interpreted by the producer, compiler, browser, etc., of the different sources of information.
  • By making the Hispanic authors aware of the problem so that they always sign their works in the same way, thinking of how they will be referenced by the international databases, the OAI archives and the automated browsers which, as a practically irreversible 'fait accompli', are under the influence of the English culture and habits (Science Citation Index, Scopus, Chemical Abstracts, Medline, Google Scholar, etc.).
  • By creating the simple IraLIS form of signature which allows a suitable and unconfused recognition even by the Anglo-Saxon sources of cultural information.

(2) how we use linked data technology to achieve this goal

  • By creating and publishing specific URIs for each author

Target Audience

The IraLIS project has been thought up above all for Spanish-speaking countries, which is where the largest number of ambiguities appears due to the length of the signatures and the fact that the surname considered to be the main one does not appear at the end. Nevertheless, whilst perhaps not being so serious, problems in the identification of authors arise in all languages (even in the Anglo-Saxon countries) for which reason any person may introduce their details.

IraLIS aims to be universal, for which invites Arabic, Chinese, Indian, Japanese, Korean, etc., authors to introduce their names transliterated into English in IraLIS, given that the correct interpretation of their names is also frequently conflictive.

Anybody who studies and/or works in any aspect of science may register in IraLIS. Whether they have already published works, or are planning to do so in the future, they can (and should) open a file in IraLIS. The sooner they adopt an iralis signature, the fewer problems they will encounter in the future localizing of their works.

Use Case Scenario

  • The researcher Tomás Rodríguez Subirats registers in IRALIS his name and all the variations of the name he has used along his life. The system proposes Tomás some varitions that match the international signature format like these ones:
    • Tomás Rodríguez-Subirats
    • Tomás Rodríguezsubirats
    • Tomás R. Subirats
    • Tomás Rodríguez
    • Tomás S. Rodríguez
  • Tomás chooses from the list the form he prefers and from now on he will allways sign his works with this registered name, his "iralis name". So he standardizes the way that his name is going to be used in different systems.
  • Tomas (or any one) is able to launch searches from IraLIS web site (with all the registered name variations used by Tomas) at one time on Oaister, Google and Google Scholar
  • Later on, when Tomas deposits his scientific works in E-LIS, he will see his standard name in the author box, taken automatically from IraLIS. This assures that all Tomás' future document archival in E-LIS will be entered with the correct signature.

Application of linked data for the given use case

Existing work

The collaboration between IraLIS and E-LIS began in 2008. E-LIS is the largest international Open Archive for Library and Information Science established in 2003 with over 11,000 papers and with more than 5,500 users. As described, one of the last improvements in E-LIS is the link to IraLIS: when typing in the names of the authors during the documents upload process, a dropdown menu shows the IraLIS registered names. IraLIS answers the query made in OpenURL. The menu is updated automatically every night to collect the new iralized names. To deposit documents in E-LIS it is not required to register in IraLIS, but it is highly advisable to do it in order to standardize the signature and to be able to recover all the personal bibliography without further trouble.



Directorio EXIT:


Related Vocabularies

  • SKOS
  • FOAF
  • BIBO


Báez, José Manuel, Peset, Fernanda, Núñez, Florencio y Ferrer, Antonia (2008). La normalización de los currículos científicos. El profesional de la información 2008, vol. 17, n. 2, pp. 213-220.

Baiget, Tomàs, Peset, Fernanda; Subirats, Imma, Rodríguez-Gairín, José Manuel, Ferrer, Antonia y Ontalba-Ruiperez, José Antonio (2007). Authority records for author's names in Library and Information Science. Proceedings 5th Workshop on Innovations in Scholarly Communication (OAI5), Geneva (Switzerland).

Baiget, Tomàs, Rodríguez-Gairín, José Manuel, Peset, Fernanda, Subirats, Imma y Ferrer, Antonia (2007). Normalización de la información: la aportación de IraLIS. El profesional de la información, 16, 6, 636-643.

Peset, Fernanda, Baiget, Tomàs, Ferrer, Antonia y Rodríguez-Gairín, José Manuel (2007). Dspace and the standardization of the information: names of Spanish authors. Dspace user group meeting 2007 Rome.