Data Standards—

The BWR editorial team is responsible for coordination and oversight of BWR data, data standards and contributor policies. In this phase 1 BWR release, we have curated a seed set of built works records drawn from an aggregation of nearly 40 unique collections. More than 310,000 records were aggregated, reviewed, enhanced and processed resulting in BWR’s initial 70,000 record dataset.

Each of the 40 collection data sets were originally constructed according to the policies and data structure of the contributing organizations. In addition, when controlled vocabularies, thesauri, and authority files were used in record creation at each institution, they were applied to data in a wide variety of schema ranging from VRA core, Dublin core, and MARC to customized frameworks such as those used by the Avery Index to Architectural Periodicals and others developed for personal archives. Most contributed records were originally created for bibliographic, archival or visual documentation, or individual collections. Within each collection and across the aggregate, datasets often included numerous entries for the same built works. In order to develop a single core record for each built work, we employed an iterative process of de-duplication within individual collections, and data mapping and merging across the collections into a uniform BWR schema and a single dataset. Once combined, the duplication of records between collections allowed us to select the most comprehensive records for many built works.

Data values for geographic locations in BWR records have been normalized using the Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names. In addition, records have also been enhanced with geospatial data. Approximately 95% of BWR records carry latitude and longitude coordinates which both disambiguate works of the same name from one another, and place built works on our map interface for place-based discovery. The initial dataset locates the majority of works at the city level, but whenever a street address was known, we mapped it to a precise location.