Thesaurus construction for community-centered metadata
Community-engaged approaches to resource access require metadata practices that surface attributes relevant to local information needs and use terminology that reflects local language. This paper details the iterative and ongoing metadata work involved in facilitating access to aggregated items through the Downtown Eastside Research Access Portal. The challenges and strategies we describe here build upon and are relevant to knowledge organization projects seeking to repair issues of inaccurate and stigmatizing descriptive metadata for universal and local collections. After contextualizing the collection and the community, we describe our process in assessing areas of subject terminology in need of major repair, sources consulted for thesaurus terminology, and the approach we have taken to build a stand-alone thesaurus for this project, including our exploration and attempts at meaningful and respectful input into terms and term relationships.
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