webs of scholarship

communities of scholars

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Welcome to Bibliopedia

Current Projects

We are currently testing and refining Bibliopedia in collaboration with two major research projects at Stanford:


For Researchers

Bibliopedia provides a platform for organizing, visualizing, sharing, and searching archives without the need for scholars to become experts in metadata or data visualization. It transforms materials into visualized networks to provide new insights into their structure and context. Bibliopedia allows scholars to collaborate on the elaboration and improvement of these materials, is useful for active research, and serves as a gateway to long-term preservation and dissemination.

For Librarians and Technologists

Bibliopedia’s main technical innovation is the melding of the needs of researchers with those of librarians and technologists through open source software, standardized yet flexible metadata descriptions, and existing and emerging technologies that include Linked Open Data and data visualizations. Bibliopedia ensures that research and cultural heritage materials are available to the widest possible audiences, for long-term preservation, and for creative combinations with other resources.


Despite great interest from researchers, librarians, cultural heritage institutions, and the general public in digital and digitized research materials, there exists no platform that addresses the various needs of these groups. Bibliopedia helps scholars make sense of their materials while making it straight-forward for librarians to preserve and index these materials.

Researchers need a tool that allows them easily to organize and analyze their research material, either as individual scholars or with a team of colleagues and students. These forms of analysis include search, tagging, and data visualization, all of which Bibliopedia makes possible. Faculty also wish to share their research materials in a secure, copyright-aware way with peers at other institutions and with their students. Bibliopedia defines numerous tiered levels of access for materials that guarantee that researchers can share sensitive materials while making their publicly accessible items available for general use in research and teaching.

Academic librarians encourage faculty to consider issues of long-term preservation and interoperability, but often lack the time or resources to ensure that each faculty-led research project implements best practices from the project’s inception. Bibliopedia automatically encodes research materials with well-known metadata schemata, making those materials more quickly ingestible into library systems for search and preservation. Bibliopedia also connects individual items within a larger network of materials, thereby contextualizing materials in new and unexpected ways.

There is also great interest in making materials re-usable for federated searches such as those made possible by the Digital Public Library of America and Europeana. Although the methods to ensure such interoperability and re-usability are well understood by technologists and librarians, researchers rarely have the necessary expertise. Bibliopedia makes research available for these and other forms of search, re-use, and transformation by providing programmatic access to materials in standard formats.

Bibliopedia is an open source, generalizable platform available to all researchers, libraries, and other institutions. It leverages Stanford University Libraries’ expertise and Stanford University research projects to develop a broadly useful, freely-shared tool that enhances digital scholarship by making it easier to share, analyze, and preserve the fruits of research.


Michael Widner, Project Director and Co-Creator

Center for Interdisciplinary Digital Research, Stanford University Libraries

Jason Yandell, Co-Creator

Claudia Engel, Technical Lead for Market Street Chinatown

Center for Interdisciplinary Digital Research, Stanford University Libraries

Jason Heppler, Technical Lead for Chinese Railroad Workers

Center for Interdisciplinary Digital Research, Stanford University Libraries

Erin Fahy, Systems Administrator

Digital Library Systems and Services, Stanford University Libraries

Advisory Board

Gordon Chang

Principal Investigator, Chinese Railroad Workers in North America
Professor of History. Stanford University

Shelley Fisher Fishkin

Principal Investigator, Chinese Railroad Workers in North America
Professor of English. Stanford University

Geraldine Heng

Associate Professor of English. The University of Texas at Austin

Barbara Voss

Principal Investigator, Market Street Chinatown
Associate Professor of Anthropology. Stanford University.

Gabriel Wolfenstein

Project Manager, Chinese Railroad Workers in North America
Center for Spatial and Textual Analysis (CESTA). Stanford University.