Bringing World War Two to life

Netwerk Oorlogsbronnen


The goal of Oorlogsbronnen is to gather, collect and increase the findability and usability of the widespread resources concerning the Second World in the, what was at the time known as, Kingdom of The Netherlands. It aims to provide a lasting contribution in telling stories about the War to future generations. This ensures that World War Two will remain a moral benchmark on democracy and the rule of law.

World War 2 has been incredibly well documented in millions of pictures, objects, letters, video's, diaries, announcements, newspapers and much more. These 'silent witnesses' are collected in over 250 different national and international organizations. Oorlogsbronnen tells the stories of these resources by placing them into a context where they make sense like an event, a place, people or theme's.


  • Gold Dutch Interactive Award category Data
  • Silver Dutch Interactive Award category Content
  • Silver Dutch Interactive Award category Service
  • The Lovie Awards / Cultural Institutions
  • The Lovie Awards / Best Use of Data Visualisation

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Several online co-creation workshops were used where strategy, development, design, data scientists from spinque and historians and IT specialists from Netwerk Oorlogsbronnen came together to work on developing the platform. By combining these different disciplines we were able to pivot the complex factual data to usable information and an optimal user experience. 

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The platform gives context to over 12.5 million resources shown in 300.000+ people, thousands of locations, theme’s and events.

Data driven

The platform is almost entirely data driven. This enables us to process huge amounts of data and creates a flexible and futureproof platform. When a new organisation or dataset gets added to the netwerk their data gets formatted and cleaned up and is easily added to existing places, people, locations and events. Even generating new ones. We’re using flexible reusable components which enables us to process large and small amounts of data. 


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Search design

We’re able to create semantic connections between resources using Linked Open Data, search strategies and an expansive Knowledge Graph. This gives us, for example, the information we need to know who was doing what during a certain event and what role they played.

The lives of 300K+ persons

One of the ways we’re able to provide context to a person is by generating a data driven timeline of their lives. We do this based on a person's name, other metadata, and events that happened in their lives and in the War.


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Social Media

Oorlogsbronnen’s instagram feed consists of events that happened that day years ago or different people born or died on the day. Consistently maintaining the look and feel on the website on their social media. 

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National news

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Knowledge platform

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