In-Person Conference Taxonomy Workshops

Heather Hedden presenting at Data Day Texas 2022
Heather Hedden presenting “Introduction to Taxonomies for Data Scientists” at Data Day Texas, 2022

Taxonomy-Driven Ontology Design

Organizer: Knowledge Graph Conference
Date: Monday, May 8, 1:30 – 3:00 pm EDT
Location: Verizon Executive Education Center, Cornell Tech Campus, Roosevelt Island, New York, NY

Taxonomies should not be looked at merely as the extension of ontologies downward into subclasses and individuals; taxonomies can also serve as a source of creating ontologies upward. Ontologies are best designed with a combination of top-down and bottom-up approaches. Top-down involves designating classes and then relations, based on such sources as stakeholder interviews, brainstorming workshops, and use case development, along with a survey of existing data/content management systems to identify their information organization schemes and metadata properties.  Bottom-up methods help to identify all the ontology properties, both relations and attributes, which would involve examining metadata properties and elements and examining existing taxonomies, The inclusion of existing taxonomies can help define the ontology scope, and relations between classes can more easily be defined with existing concepts in each concept scheme/class. The ontology is then based on actual entities and is based less on hypothetical uses. Increasingly, organizations already have existing taxonomies, which should be leveraged rather than duplicated or replaced..

The hierarchies and other relationships in the taxonomy can also provide sources for designing the ontology. The concept schemes, and to a lesser extent top concepts, of taxonomies can be considered as candidate classes for an ontology. Facets in a faceted taxonomy are usually good candidates for classes in an ontology. A closer examination of specific concept hierarchies may reveal additional candidates for ontology classes and relations if it turns out that some hierarchical relationships were merely topical groupings of related concepts and not actual generic-specific (“is a”) hierarchical relationships. Finally, any existing skos:related relationships should be considered as candidates for ontology semantic relationships.


  • A brief introduction to knowledge graphs and their use
  • Uses and benefits of taxonomies and ontologies
  • Standards for and features of taxonomies and ontologies
  • The differences and similarities of taxonomies and ontologies
  • Types of ontologies and differing approaches to ontology design
  • Semantically enriching (applying an ontology) to a taxonomy
  • Tips for taxonomy creation and ontology modeling

Register here
This is part of a two-day preconference workshop and masterclass program.
Select one of the following registration options:

  • All Access In-Person + Video Package, $1199 ($949 for Academic/NGO Government)
  • All Access Virtual + Video Package, $439 ($275 for Academic/NGO Government)
  • Workshops & Masterclasses Only, In-Person + Video (May 8-9), $999