SHACL (Shapes Constraint Language) – An Introduction
  Irene Polikoff   Irene Polikoff


Tuesday, April 24, 2018
01:30 PM - 02:30 PM

Level:  Intermediate

Having rules and ensuring that data adheres to them is necessary in order to encode best practices for data creators and to guarantee data quality for the applications that use it. Until now, there wasn’t a semantic standard for defining rules or for checking conformance of data to rules. Organizations used proprietary approaches or simply stated their rules on paper.

SHACL (Shapes Constraint Language), the new W3C standard, addresses this problem. SHACL offers rich, flexible notations for expressing practically any rule. This presentation will:

  • Introduce SHACL and the motivations behind its creation
  • Provide some examples of its use and its value
  • Examine the relation between SHACL, linked data, and the growing interest in “knowledge graphs”
  • Explore the support that SHACL brings to data governance

Irene Polikoff was a co-chair of the W3C SHACL Working Group and is now a co-chair of W3C SHACL Community Group. She will share with attendees not only SHACL’s features and capabilities, but will also discuss the rationale behind its design and recommend best practices for using SHACL. SHACL is a significant step towards making Linked Data more viable and usable in practical situations. Many people believe that SHACL will be a game changer in data governance and metadata management for data, datasets, and Big Data.

Irene Polikoff, the CEO and co-founder of TopQuadrant, was a co-chair of the W3C SHACL Working Group and is now a co-chair of the W3C SHACL Community Group. She has more than two decades of experience in software development, management, consulting, and strategic planning. Since co-founding TopQuadrant in 2001, Irene has been involved in more than a dozen projects in government and commercial sectors. She has written strategy papers, trained customers on the use of the Semantic Web standards, developed ontology models, designed solution architectures, and defined deployment processes and guidance. Before co-founding TopQuadrant, Irene was a Principal in the national Knowledge, Content Management, and Portals Practice at IBM Global Services. Prior to that, she was a Senior Development Manager and a Project Executive for IBM Worldwide Consultant's tools and methods. Irene has a master's degree in Operations Research from Columbia University.