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Science and Research

Knowledge is the Foundation and Precision is Mandatory

For many scientific and research organisations, the management of the life cycle of knowledge is critical.  Too much information is stored in unstructured documents, images, siloed datasets, and in people’s minds.

Traditional approaches of centralising data frequently come at a significant cost through losing the context and lineage of the data, resulting in loss of valuable knowledge. 

The SURROUND solution

SURROUND connects and manages the data you work hard to create, and extracts meaningful, useful and actionable insights. 

SURROUND uses global standards to create harmonised taxonomies, dynamic catalogues, and configurable toolsets that allow a governed knowledge process to be automated. 

Not only can we link your numerous knowledge sources and repositories, we ensure that the context of the information is maintained, the information is traceable, and provenance is assured such that answers to crucial questions and experiments can be relied upon. 

SURROUND uses knowledge graphs to connect knowledge from different domains, information models, data sets, and heterogeneous data formats, without altering their original format. This use of a federated knowledge architecture enables information to be dynamically linked, whilst keeping the data in its original repository. 

The SURROUND Ontology Platform supports data virtualisation, which means that data need not be copied out of its System of Authority. Instead it links to that system to enable dynamic updates of related information in the SURROUND Ontology Platform.

Customer Story

The Customer

The British Oceanographic Data Centre (BODC) was founded in 1969, with a mission to operate as a world-class data centre in support of UK marine science.

The BODC provides data management support for UK marine science projects, maintains and develops the UK’s National Oceanographic Database (NODB), and develops innovative marine data products and digital atlases. The BODC makes high-quality data readily available to UK research scientists in academia, government, and industry. It also operates on an international level, collaborating in the international exchange and management of oceanographic data.

The problem

The BODC is a “vocabulary of vocabularies”. It manages hundreds of controlled lists for scientific organisations across the UK and Europe, and generates a system vocabulary. However, the key problem was that the BODC did not have a solution to easily publish these controlled lists and associated vocabularies as semantic assets that could be reused by their stakeholders.   

The SURROUND solution

Through consultation with SURROUND, BODC found that SURROUND’s Vocabulary Curation (VC) solved their problem.  VC provides the ability to reconcile numerous data systems with their varying vocabularies or taxonomies, for both a human and machine-readable output.

The result is that BODC makes data assets easier for the scientific community to find and reuse by presenting it in a simple yet effective format.

Our product suite includes

Insights and helpful links 

  • Data Fabric (DF): is the broad collection of knowledge and information assets that an organisation collects and uses to meet its objectives. SURROUND delivers the capabilities that underpin the key pillars of a comprehensive data fabric, as explained by Gartner.
  • Language Curation (LC): is the management, selection, organisation, and presentation of the use of language, typically at an organisation level, that incorporates general and specialised language usage. 
  • Error Checking (EC): an intelligent technique to validate the technical use of language, to decrease ambiguity, to increase the consistency of metadata and data elements, and to validate that end-to-end processes have been successfully undertaken.