Taxonomy Strategies


"Organizing data to inform mission judgments by providing associated content helps us examine problems in order to mitigate risk and become a proactive, learning enterprise. This allows each mission to build on the missions that have come before. This is the foundation architecture for a true NASA knowledge base"

- Jayne Dutra, Enterprise Information Architect, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory



Taxonomy Strategies provides specialized consulting services to help organizations arrange their information for its most effective use. This section includes brief descriptions of recent projects.



Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality

Taxonomy Improvements. Assessed the Health Information and Technology Research Center (HITRC) portal information architecture and taxonomy and made recommendations for improvements..

Product Taxonomy. Revised the existing product taxonomy, identified an optimum set of attributes to support flexible product merchandising and worked to expose the new taxonomy on the public website to improve search, navigation and increase sales.

Allstate Insurance

Taxonomy Workshop. Prepared and facilitated a taxonomy development process workshop.


Enterprise Taxonomy Advice. Helped to define the business requirements and prepare a roadmap for an enterprise content management (ECM) system.

American Bar Association

Content Taxonomy. Developed and validated a content taxonomy for the Business Law Section to be used to enable improved management and findability from their content library.

American Century Investments

Content Taxonomy. Developed and validated a content taxonomy as part of implementing a digital strategy for the intermediary channel.

American Legal Media (ALM)

Taxonomy Workshop. Conducted a business taxonomy workshop with ALM stakeholders to identify the benefits of sharing information sources across products and information services, and how information should be structured to optimize information re-use.

American Medical Association

Search Optimization. Formulated and implemented a metadata management and Autonomy search optimization strategy that improves the discoverability of content through site search and supports implicit content targeting through LiveSite.

American Physical Society

Facetted Taxonomy. Developed a new facetted classification scheme to support the APS editorial processes that is backward compatible with the legacy content categorization scheme, and is extensible and scalable to support new information services.

American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE)

Content Taxonomy. Designed the metadata specification, and built out and validated a taxonomy to improve ASCE web operations management.

Baker Hughes

Enterprise Taxonomy. Worked with five Baker Hughes divisions to develop a consensus around three common vocabularies to demonstrate the feasibility and value of an enterprise taxonomy. Recommendations were provided on how to integrate the taxonomy with the content management system, portal and search engine environments.

Bank for International Settlements

Categorization Strategy. Developed a metadata and categorization strategy, validated the initial controlled vocabulary for the categorization scheme, developed a categorization governance strategy, and oversaw the implementation of the categorization scheme within the new Documentum document management processes.


Product Categories. Revised the top level navigation and product categories taxonomy to reflect current product category changes and absorb new product areas, developed the taxonomy maintenance and governance processes, and responded to ongoing requests for changes to the product taxonomy.

BHP Billiton

Taxonomy Training. Provided general advice on what taxonomies might be needed, how these taxonomies should be developed, tools that are needed to develop these taxonomies, and methods for using them given the current corporate information management environment.

Blue Shield of California

Enterprise Taxonomy Strategy. Developed a multi-phased enterprise taxonomy roadmap which laid out content projects over time, and content classification facets to be developed to support those projects.

Personalization Strategy. Helped define the site’s functionality for personalization, and the metadata and taxonomy specification for the website page types.

Cal Chamber (California Chamber of Commerce)

Taxonomy and Search Strategy. Developed the content strategy, search strategy and taxonomy categories for HR California, an employment law portal built with SharePoint 2010.

Campbell Soup Company

Taxonomy Roadmap. Identified and prioritized facets for an enterprise taxonomy that would be most widely useful across the organization as a taxonomy roadmap. Provided advice on governance processes required for effective change management, maintenance, and extension of the taxonomy.

Capital One

Enterprise Customer Management Taxonomy. Worked on developing a taxonomy strategy for the Enterprise Customer Management group for use with an Interwoven content management application, and defined the governance model for maintaining it.

Business Taxonomy. Defined and validated use cases with business users, then developed and tested metadata models and taxonomy outlines to support enterprise document management initiatives using the OpenText platform.

CAPS Research

Metadata and Tagging Strategy. Provided advice on metadata, taxonomy, search, and navigation as part of the effort to implement the knowledgebase for the Global Research Center for Strategic Supply Management (now called Knowledge Central).

CEN - European Committee for Standardization

Best Practices Survey. Developed "Guidance Information for the Deployment of Dublin Core in Corporate Environments", best practice guidelines on metadata and knowledge management through interviews and workshops with European and American companies.

Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS)

Content Taxonomy. Determined, implemented and validated the appropriate metadata and tags (the taxonomy) for finding, using and sharing content in the CMS Federal Facilitated Exchanges (FFE) for health insurance (now

Content Taxonomy. Worked with QualityNet stakeholders to build an enterprise taxonomy based on extended Dublin Core and existing vocabularies. Prepared training examples and taxonomy editorial rules, usage guidelines and change management recommendations.

Chelan County Public Utility District (PUD)

Content Taxonomy. Prepared enterprise-wide metadata and taxonomy recommendations for use in website re-design, intranet, and various document repositories.

City of St. Louis

Content Categorization Specification. Completed a metadata mapping, and controlled vocabularies to support the metadata elements. Worked to ensure that the content management system implementation is metadata-driven to support the generation of common functions such as A-Z indexes and portals based on content filters like location. Provided a brief specification that describes how search functions should would work with metadata.

Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC)

Content Analysis. Conducted audience and content analysis of internal and public content used by staff and recommended key attributes to be used for organizing agency information.

Creative Associates

Intranet Taxonomy. Developed, implemented and validated the metadata scheme and taxonomy tags for finding, using and sharing content in a SharePoint 2010 knowledge management portal to improve the organization's performance.

Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA)

Categorization Taxonomy. Prepared recommended approach and functional specifications for automatic categorization system to organize current intelligence reports.

Technical Requirements. Developed business requirements for a term management store including taxonomy workflow, governance, maintenance and other integration requirements with the current content management infrastructure.

Product Taxonomy. Worked with global e-business product managers and content editors using proprietary content management and publishing applications to standardize product and non-product content attributes so that they could be grouped for use in faceted navigation on the consumer and business websites.

Content Taxonomy. Worked on several projects related to developing a strong backend metadata structure for a new content management system, and worked on developing the user nomenclature for the Next Generation

Intranet Taxonomy. Worked on a taxonomy enhancement project for Dell Salesedge, an internal sales rep support intranet.


Enterprise Taxonomy Strategy. Developed leadership recommendations for an enterprise taxonomy strategy, an action plan for short term improvements including input management and business process improvements, and a roadmap for future delivery methods and progress audit.

Taxonomy Workshop. Developed a taxonomy workshop to work with a small group of stakeholders to develop the high-level taxonomy outline, and then to agree on an action plan to build out the detailed vocabularies for each major division or facet of the taxonomy.

Dick’s Sporting Goods

Product Taxonomy. Developed product taxonomy and attributes plus navigation categories and strategy for prototypes used in moderated and unmoderated usability studies and A-B testing.

Dominion Resources

Enterprise Taxonomy. Developed the enterprise-wide taxonomy for tagging public and intranet website content for use with an Interwoven content management application, and defined the governance model for maintaining it.

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

Enterprise Taxonomy. Developed the agency-wide taxonomy for tagging and intranet content for use with a Documentum enterprise content management application, trained content editors and librarians to tag content using the taxonomy, and created the governance model for maintaining the taxonomy. The taxonomy was used in a variety of EPA applications such as a search engine based on a customized version of Northern Light that uses the taxonomy to filter search results. EPA subsequently moved to a Drupal CMS and now uses the Google Search Appliance (GSA).


Product taxonomy. Provided review and feedback on the product taxonomy assessment suggesting improvements to the proposed Etsy product categories and attributes.

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)

Metadata and Taxonomy Standard.. Developed an agency-wide metadata standard and faceted taxonomy for the FAA based on Dublin Core.

Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta

Intranet Assessment. Assessed the current state of the intranet by analyzing and evaluating the existing information architecture, metadata, and search, and recommended improvements based on the assessment and industry best practices.

Food and Drug Administration (FDA)

Enterprise Taxonomy. Worked with an agency-wide taxonomy working group through a series of workshops to develop a faceted taxonomy for tagging public and intranet content. The taxonomy was validated by sorting popular query terms and evaluating tagging consistency by FDA staff. Change management and training materials were also prepared.

Forest Service

Information Architecture. Conducted an agency-wide content audit using information retrieval spiders to systematically extract information and populate a metadata database.

Franklin Templeton

Enterprise Taxonomy. Worked on the development of an enterprise taxonomy standard, overseeing an automated content categorization implementation using Interwoven MetaTagger services, and designing the governance processes for ongoing taxonomy maintenance.

General Services Administration Office of Citizen Services and Communications

Content Architecture. Developed the content architecture for FirstGov (the official portal of the U.S. government, now including an XML content model, and metadata and vocabulary specifications to facilitate a reference implementation of a content management system application.

George Washington University

Enterprise Taxonomy. Developed an ECM taxonomy to provide the basis for a unified framework to manage, present, search for, and provide content services based on a Drupal platform.

Goldman Sachs

Document Classification System. Developed a new document classification system that applied to content residing in legacy systems, but required significantly fewer document codes than currently in use to provide greater document findability using Autonomy IDOL and more efficient document coding and retrieval from a variety of document management system platforms.


Knowledge Management Taxonomy. Consolidated multiple taxonomies developed for separate product lines, and developed rules and procedures for applying the taxonomy to content and delivering it through a portal application.

Harvard Business Publishing

Content Taxonomy Optimization. Completed and optimized the publications catalog taxonomy, and provided guidance for re-tagging legacy content, integration with the product information management (PIM) system, website navigation and catalog search. Currently, the catalog search is used in the Harvard Business Review Store.

Hewlett Packard

Intranet Taxonomy. Developed taxonomy roadmap with recommended subject metadata facets, recommended controlled vocabularies, and taxonomy governance procedures for the business to employee portal.


Product Taxonomy. Designed and user tested a new top-level product taxonomy, revised the existing product taxonomy to reflect the new top-level categories, identified the optimum set of attributes to support flexible product merchandising, worked with others to expose the new taxonomy on the public web site in order to improve search, navigation and increase sales, developed editorial rules for category names and designed the business process for changing the product taxonomy.

Honeywell Scanning and Mobility

Solutions Communications Strategy. Conducted an enterprise taxonomy assessment and developed a recommended method to flexibly categorize scanning and mobility solutions.


Facilitation. Facilitated the working group that developed the PRISM, (Publishing Requirements for Industry Standard Metadata) specification, an extensible XML metadata standard used to automate workflow processes which facilitate multi-purposing, aggregating, syndicating, personalizing and post-processing of any type of content.

IFC/World Bank Group.

Usability Assessment. Taxonomy Strategies was the project manager for the project to review the usability of the SmartLessons web site.

Inter-American Development Bank.

Vocabulary Strategy. Lead workshops to develop the vocabulary strategy for the Institutional Knowledge Repository.

International Monetary Fund (IMF)

Vocabulary Strategy. Worked with business and IT stakeholders using a workshop process to develop recommendations on how the IMF should manage Country-related Terminology, and to provide guidance on how to simplify the use of standard terminology in published documents and IT applications.


Learning Objects Taxonomy. Developed the metadata specification and taxonomies for an e-learning content management system application profile. Prepared the content tagging plan, tagging guidelines, process guide for changing metadata and vocabularies, and training materials. Provided advice on building additional subject taxonomies for individual disciplines.

Kaiser Permanente

Document Classification System. Developed an enterprise-wide document typology to support a HIPAA-compliant members’ benefits and clinical information services, validated the typology, and developed the governance processes for maintaining the scheme.

Kraft Foods

Enterprise Metadata Strategy. Designed and facilitated stakeholder workshops and developed the metadata strategy for an enterprise digital asset management system.

Learn and Serve America

Content Taxonomy. Provided evaluation and coaching services to assist staff through the process of developing a new taxonomy for the National Service Learning Clearinghouse.

Library of Congress Congressional Research Services

Content Architecture. Developed a data model and faceted taxonomy for legislative data; identified and mapped the data model to the legislative data sets; tested open source entity extraction tools against the legislative data sets; and assisted in the development of working prototypes to demonstrate a) data extraction from unstructured information using text analytics, b) associating metadata by querying across legislative data sets, and c) batch metadata management.


Personalization Strategy. Conducted an audit and analysis of product attributes, and then developed personalization attribute guidelines for a subset of the Macy’ product taxonomy for Women’s ready-to-wear.

Massachusetts Medical Society

Technology Planning. Worked with the Association to evaluate the current information processing and access environment, identify the key issues that need to be addressed, and develop tactical recommendations for short- and medium-term technical decisions that should be made to support the production and distribution of publications including the New England Journal of Medicine and Journal Watch.


Content Strategy. Conducted a content audit, created a content strategy brief and developed a content taxonomy for an enterprise web redesign project.

McGraw-Hill Platts

Harmony Taxonomy Review & Governance. Taxonomy Strategies validated the design of a new taxonomy scheme, and advised on methods to populate the scheme, taxonomy management tools, automated categorization methods, and ongoing taxonomy governance.

Microsoft Taxonomy. Developed the taxonomy for Microsoft’s Next Generation Network, a new information architecture for serving up content dynamically on the third most visited website in the world. Designed and analyzed the results of a test of alternative website navigation schemes using task-based scenarios with website users.

Microsoft Education Taxonomy. Helped establish and review the high-level requirements for the learning objects collection as well as Microsoft’s overall objectives for the Education Community products; and defined the appropriate metadata structure and taxonomy to meet those requirements and objectives.

Motorola Semiconductor (now Freescale)

Metadata and Taxonomy Strategy. Prepared metadata and taxonomy recommendations to develop and support a content supply chain.


Content Taxonomy. Facilitated a workshop to refine the editorial methodology for identifying tags, and grouping and structuring categories to agree on a high-level taxonomy for MTV News.

My Wire

Taxonomy Review and Categorizer Assistance. Reviewed content classification system for this (now defunct) content aggregation start-up, and made recommendations on how to improve and maintain it.


NASA Taxonomy. Completed a classification scheme that encompasses all of NASA web content and provided three specializations for internal and external portal projects. The taxonomy was then refined and standard formats were developed to support its use. The NASA Taxonomy website was built to provide access to the taxonomy. A number of websites have been built using the NASA Taxonomy including one which provides access to multiple document repositories including technical reports, lessons learned, and mission documentation using the Seamark engine. A governance structure was developed and framework developed to make the Taxonomy a NASA standard.

Reviewed Goddard Space Flight Center taxonomies, and their potential for integration into the NASA Taxonomy.

National Association of Realtors Taxonomy and Controlled Vocabulary. Identified and prioritized facets for a web taxonomy based on previous taxonomy and user experience work, prepared a high-level taxonomy and vetted it with an internal taxonomy working group, designed a test of the taxonomy approach using task-based scenarios with website users, and developed the process to maintain the taxonomy with a light weight governance model.

National Cooperative Highway Research Program

Improving Management of Transportation Information. Prepared a white paper on the current state of practice regarding standardization of terminology and categorization schemes for transportation information. This paper became Part 1 of NCHRP Report 754.

National Science Foundation

Science Resources Statistics (SRS) Taxonomy Project. Developed requirements to acquire and stand up a taxonomy management tool to enable aggregation and disaggregation of survey data collected and published by the National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics (NCSES).

Nike Digital

Sports Taxonomy. Built an intuitive information architecture foundation and powerful taxonomy and metadata design to support new growth opportunities of the business, and to provide customers with an intuitive and efficient way to explore content related to the broad selection of sports, products and marketing to be used with its Adobe CQ5 content management system.

Nikon Precision

Technical Documentation Taxonomy. Conducted an assessment of the global corporate taxonomy strategy for Nikon’s primary technical documentation systems and software.


MDM Taxonomy Strategy. Facilitated a workshop to assist the data governance working group in the development of a Nu Skin SKU Taxonomy strategy to be implemented as part of a Master Data Management program.

Occidental Petroleum

Intranet Taxonomy / Content Governance. Developed an intranet taxonomy to support migration of OxyNet to Microsoft SharePoint 2010. With the distributed content management enabled by this SharePoint implementation, the taxonomy supports content search and the uniform definition of content for efficient processes that enable dynamic content delivery.


Facilitate DCMI Planning Meeting. Developed outreach template to lobby software vendors to implement support for Dublin Core Metadata Initiative.

DDC Funding Model. Developed recommendations for a new business model for the Dewey Decimal Classification.

Oracle Data/Metadata Model and Search Schema Development. Taxonomy Strategies developed WebCenter Sites requirements and recommendations related to metadata and search schemas. Product and Services Taxonomy. Taxonomy Strategies built a taxonomy that accurately reflected Oracle’s product and service offerings, that could be used to automatically identify application and technology bundles and applicable industries, and that could be effectively used for website search and browse applications on Oracle Events, Oracle Pressroom and Oracle Technology Network: OTN Semantic Web (Beta)

Pearson Higher Education

Pearson Careers Taxonomy Services. Developed a reproducible process to develop discipline-based taxonomies with mapped learning objectives, and tested it on working with acquisition editors for the paralegal and culinary arts disciplines.


Intranet Taxonomy. Developed core metadata specification and faceted taxonomy based on Dublin Core.

RBS Citizens

Financial Group Knowledgebase Assessment. Prepared an assessment report that identified a prioritized set of content redesign, content rewriting and taxonomy and metadata improvements, and guidelines for implementing short term knowledgebase improvements; and provided some requirements and recommendations for the next generation knowledgebase platform.

Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers

FAIM (Field Asset Information Management) Taxonomy. Developed the attributes and dropdowns for this industrial auctioneer’s mobile data collection tool used by the field staff to do property inspections and appraisals of heavy equipment.

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

Enterprise Taxonomy. Developed a set of broad topics that distill the detailed and large set of backend metadata topics and keywords that originate in health policy program research, synthesis and evaluation. This scheme is now being implemented in various functional areas including public communications, grants management, research and evaluation and development.

Small Business Administration

Metadata Specification. Developed taxonomy specifications for populating the metadata for the GSA Business Gateway e-Forms initiative.

Singapore Infocomm Development Authority

Singapore Government Metadata Standard (SGMS). Developed, documented, and assisted in the implementation of the Singapore Government Metadata Standard (SGMS) for all Government-owned content. The SGMS standard is the underlying structure that enables the Singapore Government online search website.


Intranet Taxonomy Strategy. Helped the information management team develop a metadata and taxonomy framework to be implemented initially on a SharePoint intranet, and the governance structure for maintaining it.

Social Security Administration

Metadata Specification. Prepared taxonomy recommendations for tagging web content with Dublin Core metadata, and developed new vision for flexible site organization, site navigation & site search that uses explicit metadata.


Taxonomy Roadmap. Identified existing controlled vocabularies, prepared high-level taxonomy, tested taxonomy by tagging content samples, and prepared taxonomy roadmap and governance documentation.

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Agency (SAMHSA)

Agency-wide Taxonomy Model. Designed a unified metadata specification and taxonomy model for the SAMHSA Health Information Network (SHIN) merging the National Clearinghouse for Alcohol and Drug Information (NCADI) and the National Mental Health Information Center (NMHIC) with other agency resources. The SAMHSA Store uses the taxonomy both to tag publications and to browse for them on the website.


Target Grocery Product Taxonomy. In consultation with various internal stakeholders, Taxonomy Strategies developed an overall product taxonomy framework for the grocery category, and then researched items types at the item level to 1) specify the product category taxonomy and 2) identify all attributes and attribute values for each item type.

Theodore Alexander

Product Taxonomy. Developed a high-level luxury furniture product taxonomy and attributes strategy, built out the taxonomy, and defined and documented the process to maintain categories and attributes.

Time, Inc.

Content Aggregation DTD. Developed a specific content aggregation XML DTD based on the PRISM (Publishing Requirements for Industry Standard Metadata) specification. This DTD was used for Time Inc., and other publishers, to exchange articles and extensive metadata between internal systems and to provide them to external parties.


Tractor Supply Product Taxonomy. Revised the product categories taxonomy to absorb large increase in number of SKUs, identified universal product attributes, and provided cross-merchandising to support the best search and navigation for the site.

U.S. Dept. of Agriculture

Economic Research Service Metadata Framework. Developed scalable metadata framework to enable content reuse, and handle changes in business goals, customer needs, and retrieval concerns.

e-Government Program Taxonomy. Validated core metadata specification and faceted taxonomy based on Dublin Core, National Agricultural Library Thesaurus (NALT), and other pertinent vocabulary standards to be used as the standard for agency-wide information management.

U.S. Dept. of Education

Independent Verification and Validation. Validated conformance of ERIC (Education Resources Information Center) metadata schema to the Qualified Dublin Core metadata model..

U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security Citizenship and Immigration Services

Functional Requirements. Collected and analyzed user requirements for the metadata and indexing for an Enterprise Document Management Service (EDMS) capability to store, manage, search, and view images for agencies requiring information.

University of California San Francisco

Metadata and Taxonomy Specification. Created the metadata schema and taxonomy to support an open source ResourceSpace digital asset management initiative to create a searchable database of historic photographs, contemporary organizational images, and marketing and branding collateral for the School of Pharmacy’s external communications.

Website Taxonomy and Metadata Development. Worked with the Department of Public Affairs to help them build out a metadata schema and taxonomy to improve search on the public site, and also to enable dynamic selection of content to show on pages, and better navigation to related material.

XL Group

Intranet Taxonomy. Made recommendations on how to improve an intranet taxonomy so that business users can appropriately tag content using a facetted taxonomy in SharePoint 2010.

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[Last updated 2015-08-10]

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