Steve Baskauf

Data Science and Data Curation Specialist

Linked Open Data

Wikidata, RDF, JSON-LD


biodiversity informatics

TDWG standards development


data science education

Python, R, GitHub


Selected publications

Baskauf, Steven J. and Jessica K. Baskauf. 2021. Using the W3C Generating RDF from Tabular Data on the Web Recommendation to manage small Wikidata datasets. Semantic Web Journal (in press).

Groom, Quentin, Peter Desmet, Lien Reyserhove, Tim Adriaens, Damiano Oldoni, Sonia Vanderhoeven, Steven J. Baskauf, Arthur Chapman, Melodie McGeoch, Ramona Walls, John Wieczorek, John R. U. Wilson, Paula F. F. Zermoglio, Annie Simpson. 2019. Improving Darwin Core for research and management of alien species. Biodiversity Information Science and Standards 3:e38084.

Baskauf, Steven J., John Wieczorek, John Deck, and Campbell O. Webb. 2016. Lessons learned from adapting the Darwin Core vocabulary standard for use in RDF. Semantic Web Journal 7:617-627. (open access at

Baskauf, Steven J. and Campbell O. Webb. 2016. Darwin-SW: Darwin Core-based terms for expressing biodiversity data as RDF. Semantic Web Journal 7:629-243. (open access at

Recent presentations

Baskauf, Steve, Imam Dagher, and Anchalee Panigabutra-Roberts. 2022-07-14. Working with VanderBot to Add Multilingual Content (in English and Arabic) to Wikidata. 2022 LD4 Conference on Linked Data. Online.

Lew, Charlotte and Steve Baskauf. 2022-06-16. Linking the Art in the Christian Tradition Database to Wikidata. ATLA 2022 Annual Conference. Online.

Baskauf, Steven J. 2021-11-19. Who’s the artist and who gets to decide? Identity management in Wikidata, where “anyone can edit” in Art in Context: Identity, Ethics, and Insight. Art Information Commons (Philadelphia Museum of Art). Presentation:

Baskauf, Steve and Kali Mason. 2021-10-26. Working with Wikidata. Southeastern Museums Conference Annual Meeting. Chattanooga, Tennessee, USA. October 26, 2021. Presentation:

Baskauf, Steven J. 2021-10-18. Having your cake and eating it too: JSON-LD as an RDF serialization format in Connecting biodiversity data with knowledge graphs (symposium). Biodiversity Information Standards Annual Meeting. Online. Presentation:

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Latest Posts

Uploading a thousand Gallery images to Commons
Uploading a thousand Gallery images to Commons

I recently finished work on CommonsTool, a Python script to upload artwork images to Wikimedia Commons. In addition to uploading the image files, it creates Structured Data on Commons claims to provide machine-readable metadata about the images and to link them to Wikidata items that describe the underlying artwork objects. It also uploads the images to the Vanderbilt Libraries’ International Image Interoperability Framework (IIIF) server and generates IIIF manifests to display those images in a IIIF viewer.

Making SPARQL queries to Wikidata using Python
Making SPARQL queries to Wikidata using Python

I recently solved several annoying problems that I’d been having when using SPARQL queries to acquire data from Wikidata. My success inspired me to write a comprehensive Python class that will reliably carry out every kind of SPARQL Query and Update, with defaults to easily make SELECT queries to Wikidata.

Birding in Puerto Rico
Birding in Puerto Rico

After recently making a trip to Puerto Rico that was primarily focused on bird watching, I decided to write a blog post to pass on some of what we learned. Much of the information that we got from books or the Internet was outdated or incorrect, so hopefully this post will help others to have an easier time finding good places to bird there.