Taxonomies: Practical Approaches to Developing and Managing Vocabularies for Digital Information

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  • Description
  • Table of Contents
  • About the author
  • Reviews

As organizations seek to manage and exploit their information, taxonomies have become more widely understood and used in the last decade. Preparing taxonomists for the everyday realities of working with stakeholders, sponsors, and systems so that their taxonomies remain useful and relevant, this curated anthology of expert-contributed chapters and case studies covers the wide range of ways in which taxonomies are used in digital applications, including the web, enterprise systems, and libraries. Bringing together experts from a range of disciplines to provide real-world insights on how to build and implement a taxonomy in an organization, it covers everything a working taxonomist—whether they’re an in-house resource or a consultant—needs to consider, including

  • business buy-in;
  • working on a project team;
  • choosing software;
  • governance and maintenance; and
  • the wider societal dimensions of choosing categories and terminology.

Heather Hedden

Helen Lippell

Part 1 Getting Started

1 Business Buy-in and Scoping
Maura Moran

2 Choosing Taxonomy Software
Joyce van Aalten

Part 2 Building Taxonomies

3 Taxonomy Structuring and Scaling: A Standardised Approach
Jonathan Engel

4 The Diversity of Terms: Respecting Culture and Avoiding Bias
Bharat Dayal Sharma

5 Relationships, Hierarchies and Semantics
Bob Kasenchak

6 User Testing and Validation
Tom Alexander

7 Taxonomy and Vocabulary Interoperability
Yonah Levenson

8 Everything that Will Go Wrong in your Taxonomy Project
Ed Vald

Part 3 Applications

9 Enterprise Search
Michele Jenkins

10 Taxonomy and Digital Asset Management
Sara James and Jeremy Bright

11 Powering Structured Content with Taxonomies
Rahel Anne Bailie

12 Information Architecture and E-commerce
Margaret Hanley

Part 4 Business Adoption

13 Implementing Taxonomies and Metadata: Lessons from a Busy Newsroom
Annette Feldman

14 Taxonomy Governance
Cynthia Knowles

15 Taxonomy Maintenance
Helen Challinor

16 The Taxonomist's Role in a Development Team
Jo Kent

  • Appendix A: Metadata Template to Capture Taxonomy Term Diversity Bharat Dayal Sharma
  • Appendix B: Semantics: Some Basic Ontological Principles Bob Kasenchak
  • Appendix C: Metadata Model Template Yonah Levenson
  • Glossary Bob Kasenchak and Helen Lippell

Helen Lippell

Helen Lippell is a taxonomy consultant with more than 15 years' experience in the field. Her clients have included Electronic Arts, Pearson, the BBC, the Department for International Trade, the Financial Times, Philips, and the Metropolitan Police. She has been the program chair of Taxonomy Boot Camp London since its inception in 2016, and speaks and writes regularly for taxonomy practitioners.

"It is difficult to think of a business case for not investing in this book."
— Intranet Focus

"Definitely a great book for corporate information professionals and managers [and] it also can serve as an excellent textbook for library and information science students ... Several appendices in Taxonomies are also great information sources: a metadata template to capture term diversity, a ontology primer from Kasenchak, and a metadata model template (a generic cataloging record). These tools, as well as a nice glossary, make Taxonomies a great addition to any technical services librarian’s bookshelf."
— Technicalities