Project: Integrating vertical semantic search and knowledge sharing technologies to disclose funding opportunities

With governments cutting back on structural project funding, commercial and not-for-profit organizations increasingly need to rely on incidental and private funding sources to pursue their goals. Decentralized funding sources are scattered all over the Web and often introduce idiosyncratic guidelines and regulations for potential applicants. As a result, fund-seeking organizations spend ever increasing resources on locating and analyzing funding opportunities._x000D__x000D_Currently available online search technologies do not help reducing organizations’ costs of information search. Search engines may facilitate locating funding opportunities, and RSS feeds may even be used to “push” such opportunities, but search results are often excessive in numbers, and still need to be analyzed extensively on relevance, admissibility, time lines, guidelines, and available capital. Due to a sheer lack of resources, many organizations may still fail to identify funding sources that are most appropriate to their individual needs and means. _x000D__x000D_The current project, INFUSE (Intelligent Fund Search), proposes a new search and information service, which will drastically reduce financial resources spent on disclosing funding opportunities and improve success in applying for funds in a wide range of organizations on the European market. This will be done by integrating newly developed semantic search and knowledge sharing technologies to arrive at a powerful, personalized online tool for fund searching and sharing. In principle, the developed technology will be able to process subject-specific metadata on any given topic, which will be subject to future product development._x000D__x000D_1. Developing vertical semantic fund searches._x000D_Hardly any funding-related website currently incorporates semantic metadata. The first objective of the INFUSE project is to release the unrealized potential of semantic search by developing semantic searches that structure and semantically enrich unstructured html-data from arbitrary online sources. The technology extends Scan4news’ successful search technology OptiNews, that employs a clever combination of scraping techniques, manual meta-editing, and data management, to disclose relevant funding opportunities. _x000D__x000D_2. Integrating information search and sharing technologies._x000D_Knowledge sharing projects are usually set up to facilitate the exchange of explicit (facts, figures, opportunities) and implicit knowledge (how to interpret and employ facts, figures, opportunities). Since users tend to keep explicit knowledge to themselves out of fear of losing competitive advantages, many knowledge sharing suffers from the lack of knowledge availability. The second objective of INFUSE is therefore to push funding opportunities and infuse explicit knowledge by integrating vertical semantic search in online knowledge sharing communities. Relevant funding opportunities will be “pushed” into a knowledge sharing community; subsequently, the community members can share implicit knowledge on how to utilize these opportunities and collaborate on applications. _x000D__x000D_A re-occurring problem in the marketing of innovative information services is to make the technologies’ immediate benefits clear towards the potential stakeholders. An innovative market analysis approach is needed that explains (i.e., quantifies) the hidden costs of insufficient information search, and the added value of information disclosure for different stakeholders. Developing such analyses is a key determinant of the projects’ success, and thus constitutes the third objective of the INFUSE proposal._x000D__x000D_3. Marketing analysis and strategy: To decide which stakeholder doCOs should be targeted and which tangible numbers can be used to market the information service to individual stakeholders, strategic market analysis is conducted based on the principles of network economics. _x000D__x000D_The INFUSE project introduces its combination of innovative technologies to the currently unexplored niche market of fund-seeking organizations. INFUSE brings to this new arena a consortium consisting of commercial P Scan4news (SME) and academic Ps VU University Amsterdam (VU) and Gjøvik University College (IMT). All Ps contribute uniquely to the project. CO P Scan4news contributes its semantic search technology and hands-on marketing experience, VU contributes its expertise on strategic information sharing, network-economics, and marketing, and IMT contributes its expertise on semantic technologies and artificial intelligence. All these facets will be elaborated on in the paragraphs below._x000D_

Acronym INFUSE (Reference Number: 7141)
Duration 01/06/2012 - 13/06/2015
Project Topic This project aims to integrate innovative vertical semantic search technologies, able to extract semantic data from unstructured online documents, with knowledge sharing technologies in order to provide communities of users with timely and targeted information on relevant funding opportunities.
Project Results
(after finalisation)
A total of 17 empirical studies in strategic information sharing and amplifying role of online information mediaries therein, with implications for (1) info mediary system design, (2) market positioning, (3) media adoption. If implemented, the recommendations should lead to the avoidance of systemic communication inefficiencies between grant makers and grant seekers in non-profit environments, and thus decrease grant making costs and save money for project purposes._x000D_
Network Eurostars
Call Eurostars Cut-Off 7

Project partner

Number Name Role Country
3 Gjøvik University College, Faculty of Computer Science and Media Technology (IMT) Partner Norway
3 VU University Amsterdam, the Department of Communication Science Partner Netherlands
3 Scan4news AS Coordinator Norway