January 2019 - present
Funding organization: 


Person(s) in charge: 

Antonio Santangelo (Senior Researcher), Giuseppe Futia (PhD Student)), Giovanni Garifo (Researcher)

Executive summary: 

Geranium is a research project carried out by the Nexa Center for Internet & Society with the Research Area of Politecnico di Torino (PoliTO), aiming at developing a platform to: (i) reduce the barriers for accessing scientific publications by citizens; (ii) create new collaboration opportunities between researchers. The first achievements of the project are a (i) novel academic Knowledge Graph (KG) and (ii) a search engine to explore the publications of PoliTO researchers. An alpha version of the Geranium platform is available at: All details related to the platform are available in the Master thesis of Giovanni Garifo (IT Manager and Research Fellow of the Nexa Center): The research project is supervised by Giuseppe Futia (PhD Student of the Nexa Center).


PoliTO publications are currently available through the Institutional Research Information System (IRIS - platform developed by the Cineca, a not-for-profit Consortium made up of 67 Italian universities, 9 Italian Research Institutions, 1 Polyclinic and the Italian Ministry of Education. The IRIS platform allows to explore publications of research institutions such as PoliTO, combining a search mask based on keywords with different filters. Nevertheless, the platform lacks a semantic infrastructure to contextualize and connect information related to different publications and authors. Moreover, the IRIS platform does not provide any mechanism to facilitate collaborations between the authors and departments, which share common research interests.


The goal of this research project is to design and develop a semantic platform for the PoliTO publications available on IRIS. The current work is focused on the improvement of the Web application to explore contents related to the papers and the researchers, introducing advanced filtering mechanisms. Moreover, we intend to increase the accuracy of the implemented recommendation system, whose goal is to suggest valuable connections between researchers.


We developed the alpha version of the Geranium platform ( built on top of a novel academic KG, which semantically connects the information related to the publications available on IRIS. Geranium allows to explore details on authors and publications, through automatically extracted topics from the article abstracts. The topic extraction is performed by TellMeFirst (, a tool developed by the Nexa Center, that employs Wikipedia and semantic technologies for text classification tasks. Moreover, Geranium currently provides a recommendation mechanism, implemented using Graph Neural Networks, which suggest authors with common research interests. The development team of this project is composed by: (i) Giuseppe Futia (PhD student and project lead), (ii) Giovanni Garifo (IT manager and lead software developer), Mehdi Khrichfa (Former Rivoluzione Digitale student and back-end developer), Cosma Alex Vergari (Former Rivoluzione Digitale student and front-end developer).

Related Publications: