2012 – … : Professor and team lead at Ghent University–imec–IDLab
I started a PhD here in 2012 and graduated in 2017. After my PhD I started a post-doctoral researcher position, kickstarting a team on publishing Linked Open Data for maximum reuse. During this period, we handled use cases in the mobility sector (Open Planner Team, Mobilidata), smart cities (City of Things, Smart Flanders), e-government (OSLO, LBLOD) or waste management (OVAM).
In 2021 I was appointed professor at Ghent University, teaching the course Big Data Science in collaboration with prof. Erik Mannens and prof. Dieter De Witte. My part of the course focuses on data architecture, knowledge graphs and Linked Data. The ZAP position gives me the flexibility shape the research in our own team of almost 30 researchers to work on Semantic Web, Linked Data Web APIs, Solid and Linked Data Event Streams.
2011 – 2012: CTO FlatTurtle
As the CTO of FlatTurtle I worked on a digital signage product visualizing live data.
- 2017 – PhD in Information Engineering Technology: “Publishing Transport Data for Maximum Reuse”
- 2012 – Master of Science Information Engineering Technology from Ghent University
Selection of top papers
- Verborgh, R., Vander Sande, M., Colpaert, P., Coppens, S., Mannens, E., & Van de Walle, R. (2014). Web-Scale Querying through Linked Data Fragments. Proceedings of the 7th Workshop on Linked Data on the Web
- Colpaert, P., Van Compernolle, M., De Vocht, L., Dimou, A., Vander Sande, M., Verborgh, R., & Mannens, E. (2014). Quantifying the interoperability of open government datasets. Computer, 47(10), 50-56.
- Colpaert, P., Verborgh, R., & Mannens, E. (2017, June). Public Transit Route Planning Through Lightweight Linked Data Interfaces. In International Conference on Web Engineering (pp. 403-411).
- Colpaert, P., Van Compernolle, M., Walravens, N., Mechant, P., Adriaenssens, J., Ongenae, F., Verborgh, R., & Mannens, E. (2017). Open Transport Data for maximising reuse in multimodal route planners: a study in Flanders. IET Intelligent Transport Systems.
- Dimou, Anastasia, Miel Vander Sande, Pieter Colpaert, Ruben Verborgh, Erik Mannens, and Rik Van de Walle. "RML: A Generic Language for Integrated RDF Mappings of Heterogeneous Data." In LDOW. 2014.
- More publications can be found on my university’s Biblio page
As a researcher I am involved in the domains of Open Data, Semantic Web, Linked Data, Smart Cities and Transport data.
- Wrote a chapter on transport in State of Open Data (May 2019): stateofopendata.od4d.net
- Was a guest editor for a special issue on Open Data for the Journal of Web Semantics (2018)
- Was a guest editor for a special issue on Transport Data for the Semantic Web Journal (2022)
I review papers for multiple conferences and workshops:
- International Conference on Web Engineering (ICWE)
- The Web Conference
- Extended Semantic Web Conference (ESWC)
- International Semantic Web Conference (ISWC)
As of 2021, I teach the course Big Data Science together with Erik Mannens and Dieter De Witte.
I teach guest lectures on Web APIs and Open Data in the courses of: Ruben Verborgh (UGent), Sofie Van Hoecke (UGent) and Pierre Deville (Solvay Business School).
In the past I participate in standardization activities such as:
- I’m the editor of the TREE hypermedia specification
- I’m the editor of the SEMIC Linked Data Event Streams specification
- I’m the editor of the Linked Connections specification
- I contributed to various Flemish domain models in the OSLO initiative
- I generally keep an eye on standards by first and foremost W3C, but also OGC, ETSI (NGSI-LD) and CEN (Transmodel and DatexII).
Open-source software contributions
- I built and still maintain the iRail API (api.irail.be) at github.com/iRail
- I wrote a couple of Linked Data libraries for NodeJS such as LDFetch
- I wrote a translation script of GTFS to Linked Connections at github.com/linkedconnections
- I manage the developments of a client-side route planner at planner.js.org
- I am a board member and founder of the Comunica Association
- I am a board member and founder of the Community Solid Server Association
I am a board member of the Belgian chapter of Open Knowledge. I co-founded the organization in 2012 to push for more Open Data. I started the yearly Open Belgium conference and started Open Data ideation events like Apps for Ghent. Because we wanted to go further than just ideas, in 2011 I started open Summer of code. Today it attracts over 100 students and coaches and is also organized in Spain. I still love the concept and participate as both a coach and client in the program. I get most of my energy from inspiring and enthusing these students.
Next to being a board member of the organization I still maintain the iRail codebase and its servers. Its goal is to republish data in an easy way for developers to create apps that can foster better lives for commuters in Belgium.