A framework design for information management in heritage science laboratories

Rui Bordalo, Carlo Bottaini, António Candeias

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


The dataflow in any scientific research laboratory is continuous and considerable even in analytical niches such as heritage science laboratories. This article discusses advantages of using a Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS) for organising and systematising research in an interdisciplinary analytical laboratory. LIMS solutions are proven to be effective in managing laboratories, organising their daily management tasks, improving work conditions and increasing productivity, managing equipment and resources, and managing and safeguarding scientific data. LIMS software is commercially available since the 1990s with over a hundred software packages intended either for general or specific purposes. However, the ones currently available do not fulfil all the requirements for heritage science or are over-the-top, complex, one-fits-all standard solutions. The system here proposed was developed for a heritage science laboratory, considering its unique requirements, having as a case study the HERCULES Lab, from the University of Évora (Portugal). This article documents our approach based on the analysis of the unique requirements for the lab resulting in a proposal of a custom user-centred web-based system. For this, we discuss in detail the workflow, and the required system architecture. We conclude that although it is a small niche market for major manufacturers to dwell on, a custom LIMS is of the utmost importance for the current management of heritage science laboratories across the globe.
Original languageEnglish
Article number7
Pages (from-to)1-14
Number of pages14
JournalJournal on Computing and Cultural Heritage
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2021


  • Knowledge management
  • Laboratory management
  • LIMS
  • Scientific data management
  • Web technology


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