In this data-driven era, the amount of biomedical and biological data has been increasing exponentially over time. These data are often in data silos, scattered and highly heterogeneous. These issues impede data (re)use and exchange, and therefore progress and breakthroughs in life science and health-care research. The Semantic Web of data focus group works towards common solutions for the seamless integration of life science datasets and databases, and their FAIRification.

About the Semantic Web of data

The Semantic Web provides a common framework that allows data to be shared and reused across application, enterprise, and community boundaries. It is based on the Resource Description Framework (RDF), a graph data model. Read more

From data silos to a Semantic Web of data

Life science data are intrinsically heterogeneous, for example, in terms of data formats, modelling, storage, access modes, semantics. This heterogeneity makes data discovery and seamless integration highly difficult, which are key to uncover biological process and patterns. The ‘Semantic Web of data focus group’ aims at building a semantic web of biological and biomedical data (see box) to foster research data integration and reusability. This web of data may include private and public datasets in a loosely coupled way. Making the data FAIR is a pre-requirement to success.

About the SIB focus groups

The focus groups aim to foster knowledge exchanges and collaborations in the community of 900 SIB Members, around specific scientific and/or transversal topics, from single-cell sequencing to equality, diversity and inclusion. View all focus groups

A dedicated SIB-wide focus group

Launched in 2022, this focus group is a highly dynamic R&D group of more than 30 members from several SIB Groups, which meets every two months to discuss recent RDF-related technologies, challenges, and solutions. Their latest achievements are communicated by co-authoring and publishing research articles, external meetings, and conference presentations. For example, one year after the launch of this focus group, an article in the Nucleic Acids Research database issue (see Reference 1:   

Focus Group coordinating members:

Are you a SIB Member and interested in joining? Contact Tarcisio Mendes


SIB’s RDF Group Members, The SIB Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics Semantic Web of data, Nucleic Acids Research 2023. DOI: 10.1093/nar/gkad902