Our research theme lies in the intersection of two major ongoing developments in the ICT world: Semantic Information Systems and Social Information Systems. Semantic systems enable intelligent consumption of data by machines by exposing meaning in data using technologies such as OWL, RDF, and SPARQL, while social information systems such as Facebook, YouTube and Wikipedia are characterised by user-generated content intended for human consumption.
While Semantic and Social Systems appear distinct, we believe that they are in fact complementary. Social media tends to produce large collections of user-generated content that can potentially be leveraged by semantic technologies if they can be enriched (or “lifted”) semantically. For example, social technologies can be used to add dynamic, contextual semantics to Information Systems, whereas semantic technologies can be used to make the contents of social information systems more findable and better organised.