Social Ontology 2012

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  • Social Ontology. Part 1

Barry Smith: The Ontology of Social Reality

Background reading
Addresses the foundations of social ontology, considering topics such as the nature of obligations, credentials, authority, and the role of documents in the construction of social reality, focusing on debts, obligations, prices, the Dow Jones Industrial Average, and the views of John Searle.

Mathias Brochhausen and William Hogan (University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences): Social Ontology and the Biomedical Domain: Slides

includes treatment of the Ontology of Medically Related Social Entities (OMRSE) and related work on demographics, including gender and marital status, organizations, document acts, and guidelines

November 26: Social Ontology Part 2


This session continues the discussion of social ontology initiated on October 15, with a view to coordination and integration of social ontologies being developed by different groups, especially in the biological and medical domains.

Barry Smith: Introduction

Ramona Walls: The Population and Community Ontology (PCO) Slides

The Population and Community Ontology (PCO) describes material entities, qualities, and processes related to collections of interacting organisms such as populations and communities. It is taxon neutral, and can be used for any species, including humans. The classes in the PCO are useful for describing evolutionary processes, organismal interactions, and ecological experiments. Practical applications of the PCO include ecology, community health care, epidemiology, plant pathology, behavioral studies, and sociology. This presentation will describe the domain of the PCO and how the PCO relates to other OBO Foundry Library ontologies such as PATO, GO, and EnvO. It will conclude with a brief discussion of the utility of the PCO.

Shahim Essaid (Oregon Health and Sciences University): Slides

eagle-i and VIVO are two initiatives whose goal is to help scientists and others discover information, especially information on the web. Each uses ontologies to help achieve this goal:
  • the eagle-i ontology is focused on representing research-related resources such as biological specimens, human studies, equipment and software;
  • the VIVO ontology is focused on researchers themselves, for example their activities, expertise, and publications.
The CTSAconnect project is developing an integrated framework that merges the eagle-i and VIVO ontologies into a single integrated ontology to support the work of clinical and translational scientists. Suppose, for example, that you are a scientist in city X working on a certain disease, and you notice that some of your patients show a particular reaction to a certain drug. How would you identify other researchers living in or near X who have studied responses to this specific drug? CTSAconnect is developing a module to represent the expertise of clinicians inferred from data generated during clinical encounters. This presentation will be a brief overview of the project with a focus on discussing some of the social entities that need to be represented within the ontology framework. Examples include:
  • agreement
  • credential
  • authorship
  • position

Social Ontology: Part 3

We will continue the discussions of social ontology initiated on October 15 and November 26 (see videos and other background material above). Content will include:

Shahim Essaid (Oregon Health and Sciences University): Continuation from November 26

Draft Slides

William Hogan and Mathias Brochhausen (University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences): "OMRSE: Current status and our strategy for future development"

OMRSE: The Ontology for Medically Related Social Entities