NIEM and JSON Frequently Asked Questions

  • Why use NIEM with JSON?: NIEM is primarily about data understanding and interoperability. These things become difficult when there are many data resources, constructed and used by many developers or data analysts. NIEM can help when those problems emerge, by providing:

    • Meaningful data names and machine-readable documentation
    • Global identifiers for data components
    • Self-describing data
    • Reuse of community-agreed data definitions
  • What is NIEM JSON data?: JSON data has a hierarchical structure based on simple values, arrays, and objects. NIEM JSON uses JSON-LD to handle what is supported in XML via XML Namespaces and XML ID and IDREF attributes.

    • JSON-LD contexts allow short terms to designate URIs as property names.
    • JSON-LD’s ID properties (e.g., @id) can identify links between data, as ID and IDREF do (e.g., NIEM structures:id and structures:ref)