Raising Awareness

"A centre of excellence in digital information management, providing advice and services to the library, information and cultural heritage communities."

UKOLN is based at the University of Bath.

Emma Tonkin

Job Title

Technical Innovation Coordinator

Contact Details:

University of Bath,
tel: +44 (0) 1225 384930
fax: +44 (0) 1225 386838

The Job I do:


Systems and support – I manage various systems/support within UKOLN
Part-time development staff – I manage part-time development staff, usually undergraduate or postgraduate students

Project work

I have managed a series of projects including IEMSR, FixRep, WritesLikeUs, and others; I have contributed to many other projects such as PatientsParticipate, SFR, PEG-BOARD, IESR, and many others. My involvement is usually in the form of development, research or HCI evaluation. Recent outputs include the OARR project (to be pronounced as if it were Talk Like A Pirate day) and a first stab at a RIF-CS/CERIF mapping. I am currently arranging a workshop at OR-2012 on the subject of text analysis/mining: "Working with Text".


I am interested in various research topics including (but not limited to!): text analysis/metadata extraction; arguably collaborative activities such as social bookmarking; analysis of large scale datasets; ubiquitous computing and collective classification; evolution of classification systems. Casual staff working with us often investigate specific research issues, such as usability of ebook readers, low-cost touch sensors and applications of text analysis. I especially appreciate the chance to build/evaluate hardware. Some of our work is published on the UKOLNDev blog.

I occasionally supervise MSc-level student research; in the summer of 2011, James Currington (University of Brighton) completed "A study into the use of social media in campaigning against the Digital Economy Act", focusing in part on the usage of Twitter. I was immensely happy to hear that he passed with well-deserved Merit, so well done James!

I am also a member of the Dublin Core Metadata Initiative Advisory Board due to involvement in metadata registries and social metadata interest groups, and have been involved in ASIS&T's SIG-CR (Classification Research) and (more recently) SIG-KM (Knowledge Management) special interest groups, as well as the relatively informal SIG-TAG.

Publications and Presentations

Most of my publications are listed on the University of Bath's OPUS repository. As I also maintain a presence at Bristol University, publications may be listed at the Bristol CS publications database.


I was originally educated as a physicist, but have since diversified.