Uniquely Tagging JISC Projects

An interesting question for you all on a sunny thursday afternoon. I have been working on a small internal project for sometime to try and sort out unique identifiers for JISC. This is inspired mostly by the work I am doing to ‘FED-up’ our services but also to improve communication flow across the Executive.

I have my URI schema fairly well sorted out right down to the project level, but here I am stuck. My question:

Should project ‘identifiers’ (for administration) and project ‘tags’ (for communication) be one and the same?

I have come up with the following approaches:

  1. ASSIGN A NUMERIC IDENTIFIER TO EACH PROJECT AGAINST PROGRAMME NAME. For example JiscDEPO/001. This will meet all my administration needs, can be assigned at the point of grant letter issue, avoids any clashes etc. etc. However it will mean that projects have several identifiers / tags and is non-intuitive so you will probably have to keep on looking back to your grant letter to remember if you are asked.
  2. ASK PROJECTS TO DEFINE A TAG AT PROJECT PROPOSAL STAGE. We have already issued advice on tagging and it would be easy to collate these and issue grant letters against a project defined tag. This example would be JiscDEPO/origamipro to make up a project tag. The only real problem here is that tags will be created for projects that don’t get funded and there would be no way to distinguish a formally funded project from a project proposal.
  3. COLLATE IDENTIFIERS FOR PROJECTS AT PROJECT PLAN STAGE. This is more of an administrative burden, and means there is no identifier in the funding letter, which I am quite keen to establish.

What do people think? Am I being over zealous trying to collate identifiers for administration with tags that have a different purpose in life? Am I strange to even be thinking about this at all? Is there ‘another way’? Ideas on the usual comments-postcard please.

3 thoughts on “Uniquely Tagging JISC Projects

  1. Andy Powell

    On the basis that you can’t have a conversation about identifiers these days without thinking about URIs in general and http URI specifically, I think you need to at least consider the your use of http URIs here.

    You could ask projects to ‘suggest’ a tag at proposal stage (I say suggest because projects have no way of knowing whether their suggested tag will be unique within the chosen funding call). You would then have to de-duplicate any duplicate suggested tags in some way – presumably after you’ve agreed what is going to be funded.

    At that point the ‘tag’ can be turned into a URI using the following structure:


    or some such?

    Note: in line with Linked Data this would be the URI for the project… not for a web page about the project, so your website would have to be configured to issue a 303 redirect to an ‘information resource’ about the project.

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