The DDI Alliance Scientific Board has approved the establishment of a "simple liaison" relationship with the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) to coordinate activities in the field of data description, especially around specification development. The goal of a simple liaison is for both parties to gain a better understanding of their respective activities and look for opportunities to work together. Most often, W3C establishes simple liaisons with peer organizations, other standards bodies, or any other non-profit entity that may wish to build consensus around an emerging Web technology.
The W3C contact is Pierre-Antoine Champin, W3C fellow and coauthor of JSON-LD. The DDI Alliance contact is Joachim Wackerow, DDI Scientific Board member and collaborator with W3C experts in the context of the Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz Center for Informatics workshops on DDI and metadata. Since 2011, twelve experts involved in W3C activities (six of them are members of the W3C DXWG) have participated in Dagstuhl workshops on DDI and metadata.
The main W3C activity affected by the liaison is the Dataset Exchange Working Group (DXWG), which created the Data Catalog Vocabulary (DCAT). Data description specifications are increasingly used in combination with other specifications, especially in the semantic web. An important example is the combination of DCAT with a specification that describes more granular elements (e.g. variables); DDI-Cross Domain Integration (DDI-CDI) is a candidate as a domain-independent specification. Other DDI-relevant W3C specifications include: RDF Data Cube Vocabulary, CSV on the Web, Data Catalog Vocabulary, and Provenance Ontology (PROV-O).