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WorldCat® knowledge base

Make your electronic content easier to find, use and manage

The WorldCat knowledge base combines data about your library's electronic collections and linking features that enable access to the content, ensuring your users get accurate and timely access to these resources and bringing huge efficiencies to the workflows associated with managing these materials. Unlike data in a traditional knowledge base, WorldCat knowledge base data is not tied to a particular application. This means you only need to add data once to a single knowledge base to power a number of OCLC and non-OCLC applications, saving time and effort.

The WorldCat knowledge base currently enables the following functionality in OCLC services:

OCLC WorldShare Metadata collection management: Automatic management of WorldCat holdings and delivery of WorldCat MARC records for all of your electronic materials. This ensures that the metadata and access URLs for your eContent is continually updated, so your users get better access, your staff gain time for other priorities, and you see improved return on the investments you have made in your collections.

OCLC WorldShare License Manager: Integrated link resolution in a full-featured license management solution. The WorldCat knowledge base holdings that power the License Manager’s linking functionality synchronize automatically with WorldCat every day. Once your library’s local data is present in the WorldCat knowledge base, that information automatically updates appropriate records in WorldCat.

WorldCat Local: OpenURL resolution and A to Z list. This means no additional uploading or synchronization of licensed resources with local catalogues and instant access to licensed resources for your end users.

WorldCat Resource Sharing: Quick and easy resource sharing of electronic content with higher fulfilment rates.

knowledge base API is available, allowing you to use data in the WorldCat knowledge base to innovate at the local level and create your own unique solutions.

WorldCat knowledge base functionality is included as part of your full OCLC Cataloguing subscription.

For more information

If you do not currently have a cataloguing subscription, please contact or or for more information.

For help with your WorldCat knowledge base implementation, contact  your nearest OCLC office or regional distributor.

How it works

The WorldCat knowledge base combines data about your library's licensed content and linking features that enables better access to and more efficient management of your library’s content. The knowledge base includes:

Collection data—The databases or packages purchased by your library. Content providers regularly add and change metadata for these materials, and the WorldCat knowledge base is continually updated to reflect these changes, meaning always accurate and timely access routes to eContent for your users.

Title data—Titles that are part of a collection, including descriptive and identifier metadata.

Holdings data—An inventory of the titles to which your library or consortium subscribes. Includes the range of coverage for each title and embargo periods. This information is updated by your library, content partners or OCLC's harvesting program, meaning your library benefits from huge efficiencies in scale.

Linking logic—Citation data and your institution's affiliation are combined with linking logic defined by the knowledge base to create a link to the full text at the article or title level. The WorldCat knowledge base uses an associated license management tool to connect to your library's license data. This allows identification of collections that your library may loan to other libraries and instructions on how to do so.

The WorldCat knowledge base includes library-, publisher- and OCLC-contributed content from around the world, covering e-books, e-journals and open access content. Data is comprised of :

  • Local library knowledge base profiles
  • Holdings addition and automatic updates by Pubget
  • Manual selection by library staff
  • Addition of collection data, title data and holdings by content providers