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Report 1.5 - #bibframe and RDA and Profiles

Posted By Kimmy Szeto, Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Originally Posted to the Task Force Group Blog By Sophie M. Rondeau, Saturday, December 13, 2014


Ford’s presentation makes connections between BIBFRAME Core Classes and RDA, as well as briefly discussing BIBFRAME profiles. The first statement Ford makes in his presentation is that “the Bibliographic Framework Initiative will re-imagine and implement a bibliographic environment for a post-MARC, networked world “(slide 2). He provides an outline of BIBFRAME’s Core Classes: Work; Instance; Authority; and Annotation.

Ford begins by describing the Work, which shares a striking similarity to the Work entity described in the FRBR model; it is the “conceptual essence” of the item (slide 5). Ford compares the BIBFRAME core classes to RDA and demonstrates how they would translate into a MARC record. In drawing a comparison between BIBFRAME and RDA, the Work class parallels the RDA Work and Expression. For example, a Spanish translation of Huckleberry Finn, which is an RDA Expression, is considered part of the BIBFRAME Work core class.  

A BIBFRAME Instance shares similarities with an RDA Manifestation; it is an “embodiment of a BIBFRAME work” (slide 7). In the MARC examples, Ford highlights the Publication Statement and the Extent of the resource to illustrate the similarity between the BIBFRAME Instance and the RDA Manifestation.

An Annotation is defined as “a resource that asserts additional information about another BIBFRAME resource” (slide 12). An RDA Item is equivalent to a BIBFRAME Annotation, also described in parentheses as the HeldItem (slide 12). In the MARC example, it is highlighted as the classification number.  

The Authority class represents key concepts or things in relationship to Works and Instances, but has no illustrated parallel to RDA. Examples include person, organization, family, topic, meeting, jurisdiction, place, and temporal concepts. In the MARC examples subject (topical), name, and geographic authorized access points were highlighted within the Work core class, which left me somewhat puzzled.  A BIBFRAME Authority is defined as a representing key concepts or things in relationship to Works and Instances (slide 9).

Ford’s presentation also includes a section on BIBFRAME profiles. A Profile (aka “spec”) is described as “an information model and reference serialization to support a means for identifying and describing structural constraints” (slide 21). A BIBFRAME Profile is further described as a document or set of documents that assigns a Profile (local cataloging practices) to a broader context (BIBFRAME Profiles, retrieved at In simple terms, it is a cataloging tool intended to guide the cataloger in creating or modifying a BIBFRAME record. Profiles can also be used with content standards such as RDA. The BIBFRAME structure could be described hierarchically as a set of resource templates, which are further defined by a set of property templates, which may involve “value constraints” that define or constrain the values associated with the profiles (slide 23).

Tags:  BIBFRAME and RDA  BIBFRAME Core Classes  BIBFRAME Profiles 

Permalink | Comments (2)

Comments on this post...

Beth Iseminger says...
Posted Thursday, January 8, 2015
Kimmy, is there an updated link for the profiles? This one didn't seem to work:
Permalink to this Comment }

Kimmy Szeto says...
Posted Tuesday, January 27, 2015
Here we go:
Permalink to this Comment }


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