AbstractThe Government of Canada is bringing together related information and services across organizational boundaries into groupings or clusters that make sense to clients. The strategy begins with an Electronic Cluster Blueprint- a starting set of subject clusters, each representing a complete set of information andservices on a particular subject. The information and services referenced atthe 35 cluster sites provide thousands of links to federal departments andagencies, provinces and a multitude of private and not-forprofitorganizations. The actual content resides at organizational web sites, withcluster sites providing a subject-oriented approach for clients to find information regardless of host organization. Each cluster site is a portalwhich provides context information derived from metadata. The metadata helpsclients find information they are looking for (resource discovery), and metadata helps cluster managers administer and maintain content at the portal (manage information). Some clusters provide substantial context through a rich metadata set; other clusters provide a minimum set of metadata and encourage the client to go directly to the information source. Some metadata elements are cluster specific such as geographic coverage or industrial sector. Cluster managers require a flexible and dynamic metadata set. However, organizational web sites are the content providers and the authoritative source of content and the primary source of metadata. Therefore they must follow a common metadata standard and content rules. A central metadata repository is envisioned. All content providers will contribute metadata through a common process which will be used by the various clusters. The presentation will describe the role metadata plays in the portalenvironment and how Dublin Core meets these metadata needs.
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