Workshop on Improving Access to Financial Data on the Web

5-6 October 2009

Co-organized by W3C and XBRL International, Inc,
and hosted by FDIC, Arlington, Virginia USA


The Workshop is free of charge and open to anyone, subject to review of their statement of interest, and is not restricted to members of W3C and XBRL International. The Workshop materials will be made publically available, including statements of interest and presentations provided by the participants. See the requirements for participation.

Latest News

The Workshop is now over, and the Chairs would like to thank XBRL International and W3C for their assistance in organizing the meeting, and the FDIC for hosting. The following information is now available:


The current global crisis spotlights the need for greater transparency in both corporate and government financial reporting supply chains along with accurate and timely linked data. W3C and XBRL International invite you to attend a workshop to facilitate a discussion about improving access to financial data on the Web.

Workshop participants will collectively help to identify opportunities and challenges for interactive access to business and financial data expressed in XBRL and related languages. The extensible business reporting language (XBRL), is being widely adopted all around the world, and is set to become the standard way of recording, storing and transmitting business financial information. The creation, distribution, and consumption of Financial Content across the web touch millions of users and affects business decisions that have global implications.

The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has mandated that US public companies file reports in XBRL, starting with the largest companies in mid-2009. Other countries have similar plans, e.g. in the UK, thousands of companies already report in XBRL, which will be mandatory in 2011. In Asia, XBRL has gained early adoption in capital markets with Stock Exchanges in China, Japan, Singapore and South Korea all mandating the use of XBRL. Governments in Australia, the Netherlands and New Zealand, have made commitments to reduce corporate compliance burden using XBRL as part of Standard Business Reporting efforts.

Much of the effort on XBRL so far has gone into developing the standards and taxonomies of reporting concepts, and on helping companies with preparing filings. Comparatively little effort has been spent on how to exploit the expected flood of data. It is now time to take a good look at the opportunities and challenges for interactive access to XBRL data at all stages of the reporting pipeline.

The US Transparency in Government Act of 2008 seeks to make the work of Congress and the executive branch more transparent by creating laws and regulations that would bring more information online and available to the public in a timely manner. XBRL and broader semantic-based technologies have great potential in realizing the opportunities for public access to information about government operations. The raw data needs to be supplemented with bindings to the semantics as a basis for comparability.

What data architectures are required to support this and to realize the goals of transparency? What is needed to create an ecosystem of value-added services around this flood of data? What lessons can be learned for creating shared vocabularies for this data? How can the costs for preparing data be kept in line with the value of the benefits?

Workshop Goals

The goal of this workshop is to identify opportunities and challenges for interactive access to financial data expressed in XBRL and related languages, and the broader opportunities for semantic technologies. What are the use cases? Who are the stakeholders? What are the potential roadblocks and how can they be addressed? How can new applications be created based upon integrating XBRL with other sources of information?

The main outcome of the workshop will be the publication of a report that will serve as a guide for further work in both W3C and XBRL International.

Scope of the Workshop

The workshop is aimed at people with an involvement in managing financial data in one way or another, or who have an academic interest in how this is done. The workshop will combine a mix of business and technical topics relevant to the above goals.

Who should attend?

You should consider participating in this workshop if you are in one of the following communities:

Requirements for Participation

To help with planning, we need you to let us know as soon as possible if you are interested in attending by sending the following information to <>:

Statements of interest will be the basis for the discussions at the workshop. Each organization or individual wishing to participate must submit a statement of interest by email to <> by 18 September 2009.

Statements of interest should:

Statements of interest should be written in English. Examples may be illustrated with non-English languages with an English explanation. All submissions should be 1 to 5 pages in length, although they may link to longer versions or appendices. Allowed formats are valid HTML or XHTML, PDF, or plain text. Papers in any other format (including invalid HTML/XHTML) may be returned with a request for correct formatting.

You can view examples from previous W3C workshops:

Statements of interest will be published on the public Web page of the workshop. Submitting a statement of interest comprises a default recognition of these terms for publication. The program committee reserves the right to decline submissions that are not deemed relevant to the workshop's stated goals.

The Program Committee will ask the authors of particularly salient submissions to explicitly present their position at the workshop to foster discussion. Presenters will be asked to make the slides of the presentation available on the workshop home page in HTML, PDF, or plain text.

See the schedule below for submission and registration deadlines.


This workshop will focus on opportunities and challenges for interactive access to business financial data made possible by XBRL. Possible topics include, but are not limited to the following:

and with a focus on how these issues impact the following :


Participation will be governed by the following:

Workshop Organization

Workshop Chairs

Facility Hosting Contact

Program Committee:

The program committee consists of:

The program committee will review statements of interest to select which people to invite to give presentations, and to come up with the workshop agenda.


The workshop program will run from 9am to 5 pm on Monday, 5 October, and from 9 am to 5pm on Tuesday, 6 October 2009. Please plan on arriving soon after 8:30am to enable a prompt start to each day's proceedings.


The workshop will take place in the FDIC training facilities in the L. William Seidman Center in Virginia Square at 3501 Fairfax Drive in Arlington, Virginia. It is easily accessible by public transportation at the Virginia Square Metro stop on the Orange Line. Parking space is very restricted, so you are recommended to arrive by metro or taxi.

Some nearby hotels:

Important Dates

Date Event
As soon as possible Notify us of your interest in participating in the workshop, see the requirements for participation.
18 September 2009 Deadline for submission of your statement of interest, see the requirements for participation.
11-18 September 2009 Acceptance notifications and registration instructions sent. Program and accepted statements of interest posted on the workshop website.
25 September 2009 Deadline for registration. Please note this is a firm deadline.
5 October 2009 Workshop Begins (9 AM)
6 October 2009 Workshop Ends (5pm)


W3C and XBRL International wish to thank the FDIC for hosting the Workshop and the members of the program committee for their assistance in reviewing submissions and help with planning the agenda.

Valid XHTML Basic 1.0 Diane Mueller, and Dave Raggett, Workshop co-Chairs

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