Bilingual (English/Spanish) Metadata Working Group


  • Rose Echeguren – Resource Description Services 
  • Melissa Jerome – Latin American & Caribbean Collection 
  • Martha Kapelewski – Special & Area Studies Collections 
  • Beatriz Lugo – Resource Description Services 
  • Xiaoli Ma (Advisor) – Resource Description Services 
  • Beatriz Dominguez (Student Assistant) – Latin American & Caribbean Collection 


To analyze and discuss Spanish-language subject terms based on authorities, to select appropriate preferred terms, and to provide a more extensive, current, and broadly applicable bilingual English/Spanish-language authority file, known as Pan-American Authorities. Pan-American Authorities was established at the University of Florida in December 2020 and in January 2022, the University of Texas at Austin joined the team as a collaborative partner.  Pan-American Authorities (code: pana) is now an authorized subject heading source code recognized by the Library of Congress.


The Bilingual (English/Spanish) Metadata Working Group aims to: 

  1. Enhance user experience in UFDC by minimizing discrepancies in Spanish metadata stemming from the abundance of Spanish-language authorities. 
  1. Streamline the process of assigning Spanish metadata through the creation of a single resource that selects preferred terms from the heterogeneity found in Spanish-language authorities, aiming to enhance efficiency and support the integration of Spanish metadata work in libraries, which often operate with limited resources. 
  1. Create current subject authorities that fully describe Spanish-language content in UFDC in cases where none exist. 
  1. Encourage collaboration among departments and external institutions with the goal of expanding Pan-American Authorities and exchanging knowledge to enhance our understanding of bilingual metadata best practices.


The bilingual metadata working group will meet monthly to discuss progress and address any concerns related to the development of Pan-American Authorities. 

Description of Responsibilities

  • Selecting preferred terms from the heterogeneity of those listed in Spanish-language resources.  
  • Creating Spanish-language authorities when none are available.  
  • Developing best practices to efficiently and conveniently select Spanish-language authorities, along with creating workflows, flowcharts, and/or decision trees to implement these practices on a large scale. 

More Information

Contact Xiaoli Ma at

Strategic Directions

Obtained from UF Libraries Strategic Goals