“For a large enterprise to share information across diverse product lines and functions, a common language or taxonomy is required to classify the information. The best way to develop the common taxonomy is to look at the hierarchies currently in use.”

– David Lamar Smith, Halliburton Global Technical Services Chief


Most of the items selected are written for a general business audience, or are a basic primer on the particular topic. Much of the material is freely available on the web. Some of the material is analyst reports that are accessible only to subscribers, but may be particularly persuasive in larger organizations. All web citations indicate the date they were last checked, but web content is not always persistent. Items have been organized under the following topics:

Information Architecture

  • V. Amirkhanian, S. Fleckenstein. “Usability analysis of federal government web sites.” Arthur Andersen Office of Government Services, Experience Design Group, February 2002. Scathing report on the poor usability of government websites.
  • J. Cardello. “The Difference between information architecture (IA) and navigation.” Nielsen Norman Group Articles (June 22, 2014). Last checked 06/24/14. Explains the differences and why you should define the IA before you design the website navigation.
  • P. Morville. Intertwingled: Information changes everything. Ann Arbor, MI: Semantic Studios, 2014.
  • L. Rosenfeld, P. Morville, J. Arango. Information architecture for the World Wide Web. 4th edition. O’Reilly & Associates, 2015. The first edition of this book invented the information architecture discipline.
  • I. Young. Mental models: Aligning design strategy with human behavior. Brooklyn, NY: Rosenfeld Media, 2008. 

Information Management

  • A. Bostock. “Avoiding information overload: Knowledge management on the internet.” [RTF] Joint Information Systems Committee-JISC. (June 2002). Last checked 04/02/12. This report focuses on Internet technology and provides an overview of the issues along with the devices and techniques available for management and retrieval of online information.
  • B. Boiko. Content management bible. New York, NY: Wiley, 2002. Everything you need to know about content management from the hands on implementers perspective. Also see the Content Management Bible home page. Last checked 04/02/12.
  • T. Byrne, ed. The Real Story Group (formerly CMS Watch). Last checked 05/09/13. Objective information, news, opinion, and analysis about web content management and other enterprise information management platforms.
  • C.W. Choo. Information management for the intelligent organization. 2nd edition. Medford, NJ: Information Today, 1998. Understanding how organizations manage information processes to achieve goals.
  • J.P. Dalton. “Managing content hypergrowth.” Forrester, January 2001. R. Nakano. Web content management: a collaborative approach. Boston, MA: Addison-Wesley, 2002. Everything you need to know about content management from the business users perspective.
  • S. Phillips, E. Maguire, C. Shilakes. “Content management: The new data infrastructure–Convergence and divergence out of chaos.” Merrill Lynch, June 2001. One of the first reports that says that unstructured content has value and needs to be treated like traditional database content.
  • T. Regli. Digital and marketing asset management: The real story about DAM technology and practice. Brooklyn, NY: Rosenfeld Media, 2016. An excellent overview of digital asset management (DAM) systems for the beginner, business owner and implementer.
  • L. Welchman. Managing chaos: Digital governance by design. Brooklyn, NY: Rosenfeld Media, 2015.

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Information Retrieval

  • Advances in information retrieval: Recent research from the Center for Intelligent Information Retrieval. edited by W. Bruce Croft. Norwell, MA: Kluwer, 2000. Focuses on research that results in more effective and efficient access and =discovery in large, heterogeneous, distributed text and multimedia databases.
  • J. Bailey. After thought: The computer challenge to human intelligence. New York: Basic Books, 1996. Discusses linear (human) versus parallel (electronic) approach to mathematics and computation. The nature of electronic circuits can produce self-modifying machines that have the power to extract meaning from the flow of data.
  • R. Dolin, J. Pierre, M. Butler, and R. Avedon. “Practical evaluation of IR within automated classification systems.” In: Proceedings of the Eigth International Conference on Information and Knowledge Management (CIKM), November 2-6, 1999, Kansas City, MO. ACM, 1999.
  • W. Fan. “Text mining, web mining, information retrieval and extraction from the WWW references.” Last updated 9/7/06. Last checked 04/02/12.
  • K. Hagedorn. “Extracting value from automated classification tools: The role of manual involvement and controlled vocabularies.” [PDF] Argus Associates. March 2001. Last checked 04/02/12. Discusses types of automated classification tools, manual classification, importance of controlled vocabulary, and how to test automated classification tools.
  • K. Hall and D.W. Rasmus. “Criteria for selection: Classification technologies.” Planning Assumption. Giga Information Group. (August 21, 2001).
  • K. Hall. Content tagging strategies. Giga Information Group, February 2001.
  • J. Ivers. “Presenting the case for automated classification.” KMWorld (April 1999) p. 18.
  • KDNuggets directory, 1997- . Data mining and knowledge discovery newsletter. Last checked 04/02/12.
  • G.J. Kowalski and M.T. Maybury. Information storage and retrieval systems: Theory and implementation. 2nd edition. Norwell, MA: Kluwer, 2000. Theoretical and practical explanation of the latest advances in information retrieval and their applications to existing systems.
  • S. Lemieux. “Auto-Classification: Friend or foe of taxonomy management?” CMS Wire (Jan 30, 2012). Last checked 12/17/2013.
  • A. Rappoport. “Tools for Taxonomies, Browsable Directories, and Classifying Documents into Categories.” (Current to 1/2012). Last checked 12/17/2013.
  • T. Reamy. Deep text: Using text analytics to conquer information overload, get real value from social media, and add big(ger) text to big data.  Medford, NJ: Information Today, 2016.
  • Text analysis tools.” Last checked 12/17/2013.
  • TaxoTools.” Taxonomy Community of Practice. List of auto-categorization, taxonomy management, thesaurus-building and visualization tools. Last checked 12/17/2013.
  • “ToolKit: How to develop a taxonomy for your organization.” 5 Information About Information Briefing 13 (April 24, 2002). Outsell’s practical briefing provides a step-by-step approach to building a taxonomy.
  • C. J. van Rijsbergen. Information retrieval. 2nd edition. London: Buttersworth, 1979. Last checked 04/02/12. Full text version of the second edition of this definitive text book is available on the website of one of the foremost IR researchers.

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Knowledge Management

  • @Brint. Business oriented information portal for knowledge management. Last checked 04/02/12. “Knowledge Management WWW Virtual Library on Knowledge Management.”
  • J.S. Brown and P. Duguid, “Stolen knowledge,” [PDF] 1992. Last checked 04/02/12. Paper on “situated learning” that is particularly interesting in its perceptions on explicit versus implicit learning.
  • J.A. Busch. “The Value of context for data and information.” Presented at: National Science Foundation Workshop on Digital Archives and Information Preservation, Washington, D.C., March 26-28, 1999. Asks the questions: Why archive data and preserve information? For whom is it being archived and preserved? What possible uses will it be put to in the near and long term? And proposes some answers.
  • P.T. Gottschalk. “Use of IT for knowledge management in law firms.” Journal of Information, Law and Technology(Issue 3, 1999). Last checked 04/02/12. Discusses results of a study to determine which law firms use information technology to support knowledge management, why, and how.
  • T.M. Jorde and D.J. Teece. “Rule of reason analysis of horizontal arrangements: Agreements designed to advance innovation and commercialize technology.” Last checked 04/02/12. Article that looks at one area of antitrust inquiry — horizontal arrangements — focusing on the importance of innovation to competition.
  • R. Ruggles. Knowledge management tools. Butterworth-Heinemann, 1997. Last checked 04/02/12. Describes how technological tools can be used to support the automation or augmentation of organizational knowledge management. Defines knowledge management tools in contrast with data and information management tools.
  • P.A. Strassmann. “The value of computers, information and knowledge.” Strassmann, Inc., January 30, 1996. Last checked 04/02/12. Discusses the relationship between corporate profitability and information technology spending, and measurement of return on investment for IT expenditures.
  • D.J. Teece, “Telecommunications in transition: Unbundling, reintegration, and competition,” Michigan Telecommunications Technology Law Review 1/4 (1995) Last checked 04/02/12. This paper outlines technological changes — microelectronics, optics, and computer science, fully-interactive communications network, transition from analog to digital technologies, etc.—and explores their implications for competition policy, industry structure, and business organization.

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  • R. Dornfest, D. Brickley. “The Power of metadata.O’Reilley P2P, Jan. 18, 2001. Last checked 04/02/12. Explains exactly what is metadata for the peer-to-peer audience. Argues for a coherent metadata framework based on commonalities, and to support searching for resources on the Web.
  • Digital libraries: Metadata resources. International Federation of Library Associations, Last revised October 24, 2005. Last checked 04/02/12. IFLA collection of Internet metadata resources.
  • Dublin Core Metadata Inititative. “DCMI metadata terms.” 2008-01-14. Last checked 04/02/12. The Dublin Core is a simple metadata element set intended to facilitate discovery of electronic resources. This document is an up-to-date specification of all metadata terms maintained by the Dublin Core Metadata Initiative, including elements, element refinements, encoding schemes, and vocabulary terms (the DCMI Type Vocabulary).
  • W.H. Inmon, B. O’Neil and L. Fryman. Business metadata: Capturing enterprise knowledge. Burlington, MA: Morgan Kaufmann, 2008.
  • B. Lider and A. Mosoiu. “Building a metadata-based website.” Boxes and Arrows (April 21, 2003) Last checked 04/02/12. SBI/Razorfish consultants describe when and how to develop ontology-driven website navigation.
  • “A passion for metadata: an interview with Todd Stephens of BellSouth.” Data Discussions: Wilshire Conferences Interviews, 2003. Discusses work of BellSouth Metadata Services Group (MSG) which researches, designs and implements enterprise metadata strategy using standards including Dublin Core.

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Search Research

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Semantic Web

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  • Boundary objects and beyond: Working with Leigh Star. Edited by G.C. Bowker, S. Timmermans, A.E. Clarke, and E. Balka. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2015.
  • G.C. Bowker and S.L. Star. Sorting things out: classification and its consequences. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1999. Role of categories and standards in shaping the modern world.
  • R. Cover. “Resource description and classification.” OASIS, last modified February 12, 2003. Last checked 04/02/12. Collection of references on matters of Subject Classification, Taxonomies, Ontologies, Indexing, Metadata, Metadata Registries, Controlled Vocabularies, Terminology, Thesauri, Business Semantics. Part of the XML Cover Pages.
  • T. Craven. “Thesaurus construction.” London: University of Western Ontario, last updated January 25, 2008. Last checked 04/02/12. Introductory tutorial on thesaurus construction.
  • M. Denny. “Ontology Tools Survey, Revisited.” XML.com (July 14, 2004) Last checked 04/02/12. Update of 2002 survey. Original survey can be found at www.xml.com/pub/a/2002/11/06/ontologies.html.
  • B. Doyle. “TaxoTips: Resources to help with your taxonomies and controlled vocabularies.” Last checked 04/02/12. Provides current resources to support content taggers and tagging.
  • S. Dumais and H. Chen. “Hierarchical classification of web content.” [PDF] Proceedings of SIGIR 2000, pp. 256-263.
  • Information intelligence: Content classification and enterprise taxonomy practice.” [PDF] Delphi Group. 2004. Last checked 04/02/12. This whitepaper defines taxonomy and classification within an enterprise information architecture, analyzes trends in taxonomy software applications, and provides examples of approaches to using this technology to solve business problems.
  • K. Fast, F. Leise, and M. Steckel. “What is a controlled vocabulary?Boxes and Arrows (December 2002) Last checked 04/02/12. A useful summary that explains why a common language is important for effective information retrieval, and some of the ways these can be represented.
  • K. Fast, F. Leise, and M. Steckel. “Creating a controlled vocabulary.” Boxes and Arrows (April 2003) Last checked 04/02/12. Using commerce website examples, discusses how to create a controlled vocabulary from an information architecture point of view.
  • H. Hedden. The Accidental taxonomist. 2d Edition. Medford, NJ: Information Today, 2016. See also Heather Hedden’s The Accidental Taxonomist blog, where she writes about topics related to information management taxonomies. Last checked 11/09/2014.
  • P. Lambe. Organising knowledge: Taxonomies, knowledge and organisational effectiveness. Oxford: Chandos Publishing, 2007. Last checked 04/02/12. This book is a practical, up-to-date guide to business taxonomy from a practical knowledge management perspective. It includes clear definitions and many excellent case studies.
  • B. Lutes. “Web thesaurus compendium.” Last modified June 1999. Last checked 04/02/12. Collection of thesauri and classifications on the Internet.
  • National Information Standards Organization. Guidelines for the construction, format and management of monolingual controlled vocabularies. [PDF] ANSI/NISO Z39.19-2005. Approved July 25, 2005. Last checked 10/02/17.
  • National Information Standards Organization. Issues in Vocabulary Management. [PDF] NISO TR-06-2017. Approved September 25, 2017. Last checked 10/02/17. A detailed and timely overview that discusses vocabulary use and reuse, documentation and preservation.
  • Networked Knowledge Organization Systems/Services (NKOS). Last checked 04/02/12. Set of pages devoted to discussion of functional and data model for enabling knowledge organization systems, such as classification systems, thesauri, gazetteers, and ontologies, to function as networked interactive information services.
  • Next generation unstructured data management platform.” Content Wire (Nov 29, 2002) Last checked 04/02/12.
  • L. Owens, “How to build a high-octane taxonomy for ECM and enterprise search systems“, Forrester Research (November 2008). Nice overview of the business aspects of establishing a taxonomy in content management and/or search applications. Our founder, Joseph Busch, was interviewed by Ms. Owens during her preparation of this article.
  • W. Pohs. “Selecting a taxonomy management tool.” SLA 2013. Last checked 12/17/2013.
  • W. Pohs. “Building a taxonomy for auto-classification.” ASIST Bulletin (December 2012/January 2013). Last checked 12/17/2013.
  • L. Ramos. “Taxonomy, thesaurus, tagging: Balancing automation and editorial review.” Giga Information Group, March 2002. Provides excellent definitions of these terms.
  • S.L. Roberts-Witt. “Practical taxonomies.” Knowledge Management (January 1999) p. 46-54.
  • L. Spiteri. “A Simplified model for facet analysis.” 23 Canadian Journal of Information and Library Science (April-July 1998) p. 1-30. Last checked 04/02/12. A simplified model for facet analysis that incorporates the principles proposed by Ranganathan and the Classification Research Group (CRG).
  • Taxonomy & content classification: market milestone report.” [PDF] Delphi Group. 2002. Last checked 04/02/12. This whitepaper written for Verity, the leading site search vendor, describes current state and trends of the taxonomy software market, how these technologies are applied to solving business problems, and reports findings of a market survey of over 450 organizations about taxonomy.
  • Ten taxonomy myths.” The Montague Group. (Nov. 2002) Last checked 04/02/12. This article does an excellent job of describing what a taxonomy is (and what it isn’t).
  • A. Warner. “A taxonomy primer.” Ann Arbor, Mich: Lexonomy, 2002. Last checked 04/02/12. Provides general advice about how controlled vocabularies fit into the information architecture of a web site.
  • L. Will. “Publications on thesaurus construction and use.” Willpower Information. Last revised 8/8/08. Last checked 04/02/12. Bibliography of printed and electronic (Internet) publications on the construction and use of thesauri for information retrieval.
  • C. Wodtke. “Mind your phraseology!: using controlled vocabularies to improve findability.” Digital Web Magazine(August 2002) Last checked 04/02/12.

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