CESSDA-ELSST project update

The Thesaurus Team

The CESSDA-ELSST project, which has funded the development of the ELSST and HASSET thesauri over the last five years, officially ended on 30 September 2017.

The project, funded by the UK’s Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), had three main aims:

  • merging and improving the (internal) management interface of both thesauri
  • updating and improving the (external) user interface of both thesauri
  • reviewing and updating the thesauri’s content

All three goals have been achieved.

New thesaurus management system

The new thesaurus management system, which brought the two thesauri onto the same development platform, was launched in January 2015. Since then, work has focused on streamlining the workflow for concept management and improving reporting functions.

Two new separate, but visually similar, user interfaces were also launched in January 2015. They enable the user to access HASSET and ELSST at https://hasset.ukdataservice.ac.uk/ and https://elsst.ukdataservice.ac.uk/ respectively. An innovative feature of both is the interactive visual graph view which provides an alternative way of navigating thesaurus terms and relationships rather than the standard form view.

Both the thesaurus management system and the user interfaces have undergone two stages of development, in response to user feedback, and the latest versions are due for release later this year.

Updated content

Work on developing the content of HASSET and ELSST has progressed in full collaboration with ELSST translators. Communication is conducted via a dedicated email list and quarterly online meetings. The input from all who have contributed has greatly enhanced the status of ELSST as a multilingual resource and the level of commitment shown by everyone is testament to the value placed on ELSST by both the individuals concerned and their institutions.

We are pleased to report that during the lifetime of the project, four new languages have been added to ELSST: Czech, Lithuanian and Romanian (in 2015) and Slovenian (in 2017). In addition, two new archives, the Luxembourg Institute of Socio-Economic Research (LISER), and the Austrian Social Science Data Archive (AuSSDA) have joined us to contribute to the translation of French and German respectively.

The project also achieved its goal of an annual release of ELSST through two releases (in September 2016 and September 2017).

Future funding

We are happy to announce that further funding has been secured for ELSST from January 2018 – December 2018 via the CESSDA Vocabulary Services Multilingual Content Management (VOICE) work plan. This work will involve the continuation of content development and extension to more languages (details to be confirmed). The UK Data Service will continue to lead the work, with FSD and GESIS as lead partners. The UK Data Service and many ELSST partners are also involved in other related CESSDA projects, including the Euro Question Bank (EQB), the CESSDA Metadata Management (CMM) project, and the Controlled Vocabularies (CV) Manager project. Further information about all these projects can be found at https://www.cessda.eu/Projects/Work-Plans

In the meantime, we would like to thank all those who helped make CESSDA-ELSST a success, and we look forward to working with you all in the next phase of ELSST’s development.

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