D-SPIN - a German infrastructure for Language Resources and Tools

Duration of the project: 1st April 2008 – 31st March 2011 (36 months)

Funded by: Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF)

Amount of funding: 1.68 Million Euro

Summary and project aims

It is by now widely accepted that scientific methods and procedures are about to change dramatically, due to increased networking and online accessibility of primary and secondary data as well as tools. Workshops, seminars and conferences not only question whether the innovative dynamics of information technology are going to greatly influence science, but rather what the scientific processes known as eScience are going to look like in the future.

The famous quote by J. Taylor is indisputable eScience is about global collaboration in key areas of science and the next generation of infrastructure that will enable it. Taylor states that the term eScience needs to be based not only on new collaborative forms, but also on a new generation of research infrastructures (“Forschungs-Infrastrukturen” -FI- ), elements of which are already being tested by various initiatives. D-Grid project (www.d-grid.de) has established itself on a national level, and the ESFRI Initiative, with its 35 roadmap projects, is supported by the member states on a European level. CLARIN (Common Language Resources and Tools Infrastructure, www.clarin.eu) is one of these projects and started on January 1st 2008. D-SPIN is the German partner project of CLARIN. The aim of D-SPIN along with CLARIN is to establish a virtual research infrastructure based on available language resources and tools.

D-Spin intends:

D-SPIN in Germany is going to work closely with the ontology based information portal LT-World as well as the projects Text-Grid and DOBES, which work on some of the aforementioned issues. D-SPIN will incorporate the extraordinary knowledge about standardization that is at hand thanks to the associated partners University of Tuebingen, MPI for Psycholinguistics and DFKI (ISO/DIN TC37).

In order to prevent isolated applications, D-SPIN is going to cooperate further with other initiatives on a national level – amongst these being DFN, D-Grid and DARIAH. Worth to mention is the collaboration with the project “Sustainability of Linguistic Data”, which has converted linguistic data from SFBs 441 (Tuebingen), 538 (Hamburg) and 632 (Potsdam) since 2006 into long-term usable and uniformly accessible resources and accordingly provides the respective software.

D-SPIN will keep its independence from the European CLARIN-association, and, by integrating leading German institutions, is going to ensure on the one hand that German interests regarding an optimal supply are realized on a national level and on the other hand that there will be a productive exchange pleasing both sides.

Work packages in the project

The project is subdivided into eight work packages (“Arbeitspakete” AP):


Prof. Dr. Erhard Hinrichs
Department of Linguistics
University of Tuebingen
Wilhelmstr. 19
72074 Tuebingen
Phone: +49 7071 29 74279
Fax: +49 7071 29 52 14
Email: eh@sfs.uni-tuebingen.de