FREE FLOW OF LEGAL DATA WORLD WIDE
The goal of LEXDATA.org, the free flow of legal data worldwide, is pursued by standardising the method by which Legal RDF Dictionaries are built and applying such Dictionary to a Schema Repository. The Legal RDF Dictionary is an interface to link datastructures in such a way that data stemming from different datastructures become comparable and exchangeable ( further details and background). Below is an abstract of the more extensive founding plan of LEXDATA.org.
Abstract of the founding plan
LEXDATA.org will be controlled by a number of "Stakeholders". The highest possible degree of objectivity is achieved through a balanced spread of interests represented by the Stakeholders. The number of Stakeholders is kept small enough to ensure quick decisions, but large enough to ensure influence on widespread acceptance of the Legal RDF Dictionary. Stakeholders are expected from the public sector (in particular Ministries of Justice and e-Government) and the private sector (in particular Legal Publishers and Legal Technology Providers). Funding Stakeholders will be co-owner of the Standard, the Schema Repository and the first Legal RDF Dictionary made according to the Standard. In addition to the Stakeholders a number of "Standardisation Participants", primarily from the academic world, will be involved. On basis of a global standard for the exchange of legal data long term investment decisions can be made with greater certainty. The Repository with the Legal RDF Dictionary will be the first major hub for legal data. The hub opens a myriad of possibilities for data-enhancing for the public good and for commercial opportunities
Standardisation is effected by writing a Specification (version 1.0), which describes the method in detail. Once the Specification has been agreed upon, it may be submitted to one or more long standing standardisation bodies for review, acceptance, further publication and public support.
The Repository and Legal RDF Dictionary
The Repository is open to any structure (e.g. XML Schema) which contains legal elements. The structures will be mapped to one another by applying a Legal RDF Dictionary. LEXDATA.org will not be involved in developing tools, other than a few simple open source tools for presentation, navigation and basic processing of data.
mm May 2003