RDB2RDF Incubator Group Charter

The mission of the RDB2RDF Incubator Group, part of the Incubator Activity, has two initiatives.

The first is to examine and classify existing approaches to mapping relational data into RDF and decide whether standardization is possible and/or necessary in this area and, if so, the direction such standardization could take. The goal is to specify how to generate RDF triples from one or more Relational tables without loss of information. Furher, a default mapping should not be used, but, instead, it should be possible for the the mapping to be customized by the user.

The second initiative is to examine and classify existing approaches to mapping OWL classes to Relational data, or, more accurately, SQL queries, moving towards the goal of defining a standard in this area. Each OWL class would be associated with one or more SQL queries which may be run on separate databases. The results from these queries would then be integrated into a single Relational table. This would be transformed into RDF using the approach defined as a result of the first initiative.

An important problem to be solved as part of this work is the mapping of RDB names to RDF/XML names.

Join the RDB2RDF Incubator Group.

End date14 February, 2009
ConfidentialityProceedings are public
Initial ChairsAshok Malhotra, Oracle -- ashok.malhotra@oracle.com
Initiating Members Oracle, HP, PartnersHealthcare, OpenLink Software
Usual Meeting ScheduleTeleconferences: Weekly
Face-to-face meetings: 2-3 per year


Plan of Work

  • Development of use cases and requirements.
  • Development of general approach to the problem.
  • (Optional) Selection of technology for sample implementation(s).
  • Generation of deliverables.

Success Criteria

The XG will be deemed successful if and when it produces the deliverables listed below.

Out of Scope

Mapping from other data sources such as spreadsheets and PDF documents to RDF is out of scope. Anything not explicitly listed as being in scope is out of scope.


Contacts and Dependencies


It is envisioned that the XG will have begin with 60-minute telecons every week at a time that provides an adequate compromise over the various time zones of the interested participants. This can be modified as the work proceeds. During the telecons, the participants will review work done by individuals and sub-groups, and new work items will be defined and assigned. Additionally, it may be useful to have periodic face-to-face meeting at a venue for which a significant number of XG participants are likely to attend.

Expected participation follows the W3C Process Document discussion of Good Standing


This group primarily conducts its work on the public mailing list public-xg-rdb2rdf@w3.org (archive). The group's Member-only list is member-xg-rdb2rdf@w3.org (archive).

Information about the group (deliverables, participants, face-to-face meetings, teleconferences, etc.) is available from the RDB2RDF Incubator Group home page.

Decision Policy

As explained in the Process Document (section 3.3), this group will seek to make decisions when there is consensus. When the Chair puts a question and observes dissent, after due consideration of different opinions, the Chair should record a decision (possibly after a formal vote) and any objections, and move on.

Patent Policy

This Incubator Group provides an opportunity to share perspectives on the topic addressed by this charter. W3C reminds Incubator Group participants of their obligation to comply with patent disclosure obligations as set out in Section 6 of the W3C Patent Policy. While the Incubator Group does not produce Recommendation-track documents, when Incubator Group participants review Recommendation-track specifications from Working Groups, the patent disclosure obligations do apply.

Incubator Groups have as a goal to produce work that can be implemented on a Royalty Free basis, as defined in the W3C Patent Policy.

Participants in this Incubator Group wishing to exclude essential patent claims from the licensing commitment must join the Working Group created to work on the XG Report and follow the normal exclusion procedures defined by the Patent Policy. The W3C Team is responsible for notifying all Participants in this Incubator Group in the event that a new Working Group is proposed to develop a Recommendation that takes the XG Report as an input.

For more information about disclosure obligations for this group, please see the W3C Patent Policy Implementation.

Additional Information

There is existing work in this area, for example: Virtuoso, D2RQ, SquirrelRDF and investigations at the Univ. of Texas. See Accepted Papers from the W3C Workshop on RDF Access to Relational Databases. This work can be used as a starting point for the Incubator Group.

About this Charter

This charter for the RDB2RDF Incubator Group has been created according to the Incubator Group Procedures documentation. In the event of a conflict between this document or the provisions of any charter and the W3C Process, the W3C Process shall take precedence.

Ashok Malhotra

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