Getting to know PROV - the W3C Provenance Specifications

Provenance (the origin or source) of information is critical in deciding whether information is to be trusted, how it should be integrated with other diverse information sources, and how to give credit to its originators when reusing it. In order to promote the widespread publication of provenance information on the Web, the W3C is producing the W3C PROV set of specifications. These specifications provide a basis for the common exchange of provenance information on the Web. This half­-day tutorial provides you with an in­ depth dive into these specifications including hands­ on information on how to publish, query and access provenance information. You will learn how to model your provenance data using the PROV data model and ontology, how to produce provenance information that enables integrity checking and inferences, as well as how to expose and acquire provenance information using PROV access mechanisms and services.


  • 09:00 - 9:45: Introduction and Overview of PROV from the Semantic Web Perspective [pptx]
  • 09:45 - 10:30: A Walk Through of PROV-O [pptx] / [pdf]
  • 10:30 - 11:00: Coffee Break
  • 11:00 - 11:30: The Data Model and Constraints [html]
  • 11:30 - 12:00: Supporting Specs: PROV-AQ [pdf]
  • 12:00 - 12:30: PROV Hands On

Overview of the PROV Family

In this tutorial, we will introduce the background of the PROV specifications which are designed to address the problem of interoperability between systems having to exchange provenance information. We will present PROV concepts and the underlying theory, establishing the kind of inferences that are valid in this model. PROV is a technology independent model. It is represented in computer systems by means of bindings for specific technologies, such as XML Schema and OWL. We will focus on the OWL ontology in this tutorial. The tutorial will be based on the following specifications and material.

Hands on

  • This blog page reproduces a chart and some quotes from another news article.
  • Copy and edit the blog's HTML source code to add provenance information (i.e., PROV-O assertions as RDFa).
  • We suggest using RDFa Play as a helpful editor. It allows you to see the results of your mark-up on the fly.
  • This RDF shows some of provenance information that you can include in the blog.
  • Check out the PROV-O as RDFa recipes.
  • Check your RDFa with a validator.
  • Visualize your PROV-O visualRDF.
  • BTW, your result should look like this.
Last modified on 14 December 2012, at 23:09