Last Call – 3 working drafts for provenance interchange

The Provenance Working Group is excited to announce Last Call on 3 documents that define the core of the PROV family of specifications. These 3 documents focus on how to model provenance information for the purposes of interchanging them.

  • PROV-DM is a data model for provenance interchange
  • PROV-O is an OWL2 ontology mapping of PROV-DM to RDF
  • PROV-N is a notation for provenance aimed at human consumption

In addition to these Last Call Working Drafts, we are also releasing an updated Primer that is synchronized with these specifications.

What is Last Call?

Last call means that the Working Group thinks that, among other things, all relevant technical requirements have been satisfied. Essentially, we think we’ve got a set of specifications that will allow you to interchange provenance information. Now it’s time to see what you think.

While we’ve had some great feedback from our several prior working draft releases, it’s often hard to comment on a moving target. This is your chance to comment on a set of specifications that we believe are done from a technical point of view.

The comment period is from now until 18 September 2012. Comments can be sent to

Time to implement

Also note that if you’ve been waiting to implement the spec this is a great time to try. This gives you a firm foundation for writing code while letting you provide feedback into the finalization of these specs.

You’ll find a growing list of implementations at:

What’s new?

If you’ve read our prior releases, you’ll find that the documents more organized and cleaner to read. In particular, we’ve worked on identifying a core set of provenance features and then then an extended set of features. Furthermore, we’ve simplified a number of concepts as well as harmonized their relationships. Finally, we have a straight forward way to represent provenance-of-provenance.

We think you’ll find that simple provenance is simple to express but that there’s a clear path forward for more complex provenance descriptions.

You’ll find more info on changes to the documents in two blog posts:


We really encourage to not only read and give feedback on these specs but also to try them out, work with PROV and start using and interchanging provenance. We are ready and eager for your comments.

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