OGK2011 Call for Papers

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AAAI 2011 Fall Symposium

Open Government Knowledge: AI Opportunities and Challenges

4-6 November 2011 • Arlington, Virginia USA

The 2011 AAAI Fall Symposium on Open Government Knowledge: AI Opportunities and Challenges (OGK2011) seeks papers on all aspects of publishing public government data as reusable knowledge on the Web. Both long papers presenting research results and shorter papers describing late breaking work, outlining implemented systems, identifying new research challenges, or articulating a position are invited. Submissions are due by June 17, notifications will be sent by July 15, and the final camera-ready copy must be provided by September 9, 2011.


Websites like data.gov, research.gov and USASpending.gov aim to improve government transparency, increase accountability, and encourage public participation by publishing public government data online. Although industry and academia have used these for some intriguing applications, the data in its present form is hard for citizens to understand and use. Research and deployment challenges emerging from open government data practices include the following.

  • Scalability. How can we search, access and reuse the hundreds of thousands of datasets from data.gov as well the much larger number of datasets directly available at federal agencies' website? Is there an organic way to dramatically increase the amount of open government data in a distributed and collaborative fashion?
  • Interoperability. Multi-scale open government data came from city governments, state governments, and national governments. How can one compare the GDP of the US and China, and later link to state-level financial data? Open government data covers many domains. How can one associate open government data with domain knowledge to build, e.g. a cancer prevention application?
  • Provenance and quality. How should provenance be leveraged to facilitate high-quality data management interactions (e.g. reuse, mash-up and feedback) and community participation between the government and the public?
  • Citizen Involvement. How can linked data application sites encourage more citizen participation for comments and contributions, and then how can these more diverse contributions be tracked, managed, validated, and evaluated?

Several approaches have been proposed to address these challenges. Using semantic technologies, especially Linked Data, to enrich the value of such data and ultimately convey the data to the citizens is one possibility. For example, linking together Justices' backgrounds, and related supreme court decisions has the potential to provide a better understanding of the working of the Supreme Court. Linked Open Government Data are enabled by Semantic Web technologies such as RDF, RDFS, SPARQL and RDFa. Once linked, the value of government data can be greatly increased with a potential reduction of cost (i) applications are no longer limited to one or several datasets but can use all the inter-connected datasets (including non-government data) on the Web; (ii) data-as-interface allow data curators, visualizers and analysts incrementally work on a specific smaller part of data processing independently, (iii) linked data enables transparent data mining and generates detailed provenance traces that allow the study of trust, privacy and policy issues. Using crowd-sourcing to distribute the task of building parsers and visualizers for different data.gov datasets is another possibility. Machine learning to find and explore relationships between data is also a possible approach.

Secondly, for governments to be able to release high quality datasets, they must be able to express usage access and restriction policies. To achieve this, provenance mechanisms must be provided to keep track of which datasets have been used and how these have been combined and policy mechanisms must be used to ensure compliance with appropriate usage restrictions. This involves several interesting areas of research: machine understandable usage restrictions, provenance tracking and maintenance, and scalable reasoners capable of verifying policy compliance.

Lastly, the techniques developed for extracting semantics, using, and sharing open government datasets can also be applied to closed/secure datasets for applications such as sharing private information within/across agencies, and integrating electronic health records across healthcare organizations. In this symposium, we invite input from diverse communities including but not limited to: government data publishers, developers, user communities who run real systems and generate demand for new technologies, and the AI community who can provide solutions and advance the research in the areas specified above. The location of symposium is extremely attractive since a lot of open government data practitioners are conveniently located in Washington, DC.

Suggested Topics include but are not limited to the following

  • Automatic and semi-automatic creation of linked data resources
  • General ontologies for open linked government data
  • Entity linking and co-reference detection between linked data resources
  • Adding temporal qualifications to government data
  • Creating mash-ups with open government data
  • Scalable solutions for linking open government data
  • Linked open government data analysis
  • Semantic technologies for government data and applications
  • Representing and propagating provenance metadata
  • Policies for information sharing, use, and privacy
  • Managing usage restrictions and privacy of government data
  • Metadata for certainty and trust in linked open government data
  • Social networks in government data
  • Publishing results of machine learning applied to open government data
  • Visualization of open government data revealing underlying patterns and relations

Symposium structure

This single track symposium will run from 9:00am Friday November 4 until 12:30pm Sunday November 6 and include a mixture of invited talks, paper presentations, panels, system demonstrations, a poster session, and discussions. We plan to have several invited speakers, e.g., a US federal Government representative addressing the current status of the US open government initiative, a researcher discussing open challenges and a W3C staff member describing the role of current and future standards in government knowledge. We will also have a panel to address the emerging issue of health informatics, the potential nationwide health information network, where private health data and public governmental data are interconnected. We are also interested in running a half-day tutorial/hack-a-thon to provide attendees hands-on experiences in creating Linked Open Government Data and building mashups.


We invite submissions of full papers (up to eight pages) presenting research results and short papers (up to four pages) defining a position, articulating a new problem or describing a working system. Papers must be prepared in AAAI format and submitted using the ogk2011 easychair site (http://www.easychair.org/conferences/?conf=ogk2011). All accepted papers will be published in a proceedings issued as a AAAI technical report. Papers should be original material that has not been previously published or under review for another venue. Late breaking ideas are encouraged as the subject of a short papers.

Important dates

  • 17 June 2011 Submit papers using the ogk2011 site
  • 15 July 2011 Notifications sent to authors
  • 9 Sept 2011 Camera ready papers due
  • 16 Sept 2011 author registration deadline
  • 14 Oct 2011 Open pre-registration deadline
  • 3 Nov 2011 AI Funding seminar
  • 4-6 Nov 2011 Fall Symposium

General symposium information

General information on the 2011 AAAI Fall Symposia will be available from the 2011 AAAI FSS Website. This includes information about deadlines, registration, location, transportation, and hotel accommodations.


  • Li Ding, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
  • Tim Finin, UMBC
  • Lalana Kagal, MIT
  • Deborah McGuinness, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Program committee

  • Hal Abelson, MIT, USA
  • Quan Bai, CSIRO, Australia
  • David Chadwick, Kent University, UK
  • Vinay Chaudhri, SRI, USA
  • Nick Gibbins, University of Southampton, UK
  • Karthik Gomadam, Accenture Technology Labs, USA
  • Stuart Graham, USPTO, USA
  • Alon Halevy, Google, USA
  • Andreas Harth, KIT, DE
  • Michael Hausenblas, DERI Galway, Irland
  • Sandro Hawke, W3C, USA
  • Anupam Joshi, UMBC, USA
  • David Karger, MIT, USA
  • Gary Katz, MarkLogic, USA
  • Qing Liu, CSIRO, Australia
  • Ashok Malhotra, Oracle, USA
  • Natasha Noy, Stanford University, USA
  • Theresa Pardo, SUNY Albany, USA
  • Vassilios Peristeras, European Commission, Belgium
  • Alexander Pretschner, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Germany
  • Alan Ruttenberg, SUNY Buffalo, USA
  • Satya Sahoo, Case Western Reserve, USA
  • Abdul Shaikh, NIH/NCI, USA
  • Kavitha Srinivas, IBM Research, USA
  • Joshua Tauberer, POPVOX, USA
  • George Thomas, HHS, USA
  • Curt Tilmes, NASA Goddard, USA
  • Evelyne Viegas, Microsoft Research, USA
  • David Wood, Talis, UK
  • Peter Yeh, Accenture Technology Labs, USA
  • Harlan Yu, Princeton, USA


For more information

For more information about the the symposium see the OGK2011 site or send email to ogk11-info@googlegroups.com.