Tutorial: Knowledge Engineering of Taxonomies, Thesauri, and Ontologies

Tuesday, September 13, 2022 - 14:15

Organized by:

Theme and goals:

Semantic technologies around linked data deal with connecting data and enabling retrieval of relevant data. This requires knowledge organization systems, especially taxonomies, thesauri, and ontologies, where concepts/entities are tagged to content or data and linked to each other. While published knowledge organization systems exist for reuse, it is best to have a knowledge organization system that is custom-created to serve the needs of its users and reflect a specific set of data and content. The goal of this tutorial is to teach participants how to design and build such knowledge organization systems.

Why the event is important:

Semantic web standards/guidelines, such as SKOS, RDF, OWL, etc. provide guidance on how to structure knowledge so that it is machine-readable and interoperable, but these standards do not specify how to make knowledge organization systems functional for its goals of information retrieval and supporting best practices for design and user experience. This is a difference between theory and practice.


Lecture with periodic discussion, open to Q&A any time. Occasional exercises will ask participants to write down answers and then share them with the class, and the instructor will write them on a whiteboard or flip chart, and then comment and invite discussion. These may include identifying the most suitable knowledge organization system type, suggesting alternative labels, suggesting broader and narrower concepts, options in semantic model design. There will also be one interactive exercise on faceted taxonomies involving breaking out into multiple small groups to design a set of facets.


Those in industry who need to develop or oversee the development for enhancement of knowledge organization systems or knowledge models. This includes:
- Ontologists or knowledge engineers who are not experienced in creating taxonomies
- Those who have a basic understanding of taxonomies or ontologies, but would like
- Managers of data, information, content, or knowledge

Learning Outcomes:
- Understand the diversity of knowledge organization systems and which are better suited for which situations
- What resources to use in developing a taxonomy/thesaurus
- How to develop concepts and labels that best serve the users
- How to construct taxonomy/thesaurus relationships according to standards and best practices
- How to extend a taxonomy into an ontology and how to design an ontology that leverages an existing taxonomy

Prerequisite knowledge:

Basic understanding of what taxonomies/thesauri and ontologies are and what they are used for, but prior experience creating them is not required. Although this information will be reviewed, it will be quick, and no prior knowledge will make it challenging.


Registration to this workshop

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