Colectica Releases Open Source Blaise to DDI Metadata Converter

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Colectica has launched an open source metadata converter project on github, featuring a Blaise survey to Data Documentation Initiative (DDI3) converter

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Allowing open standards based access to the resources stored in survey systems can dramatically increase the expressiveness of an organization’s data.

Colectica is proud to announce the launch of new open source metadata converter project hosted on GitHub. The first released component of the project is a Blaise survey system to Data Documentation Initiative (DDI-Lifecycle) converter. The Blaise to DDI utlity can produce standardized metadata documentation about the questions, codelists, and survey flow contained in a Blaise survey. This standardized metadata allows for greater transparency, harmonization, and discovery of the questions and codelists contained in the survey. Blaise is a computer-assisted interviewing system that is popular amongst national statistical institutes, market research companies, and university research centers. DDI is an open metadata standard supported by a consortium of national statistical institutes, universities, and data archives.

“Allowing open standards based access to the resources stored in survey systems can dramatically increase the expressiveness of an organization’s data.” said Dan Smith, a Partner at Colectica. He added “Providing an Open Source software converter will allow these organizations to transform their survey information into more accessible formats, such as the DDI 3 xml standard”.

Funding for the Blaise to DDI research project was provided by a grant from the U.S. National Institute on Aging. Funding for enhancements and the open source publication of the project was provided by the Canadian Foundation for Innovation through the Canadian Research Data Centre Network (CRDCN) Metadata Project. The CRDCN project is a collaboration between Algenta Colectica, Metadata Technology North America, BreckenHill, and Ideas2Evidence to establish a metadata driven environment and document the surveys and statistical data of Statistics Canada for use by researchers in university based data centers across the country.

The Blaise to DDI 3 metadata converter is available with source code under the LGPL license and can be found at


Launched in 2010, Colectica® is the fastest way to design, document, and publish statistical research using open data standards. The Colectica Platform is an ideal solution for statistical agencies, survey research groups, public opinion research, data archivists, and other data centric collection operations that are looking to increase the expressiveness and longevity of the data collected through standards based metadata documentation. The company offers a range of highly specific products and services designed to give power to people through easy integration and access to data.

Metadata Technology North America Inc. is a privately owned eGovernment data management and information technology solution provider. The Company’s mission is to facilitate production, open access, and improve the quality and use of statistical and scientific data. It specializes in products and services leveraging XML technology, metadata standards, and related best practices. Its key personnel include globally recognized experts in the area of the Statistical Data and Metadata Exchange (SDMX) standard, the Data Documentation Initiative (DDI), and the management of socio-economic data, health data, and official statistics.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the Company and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of other agencies and individuals.

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Dan Smith
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