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Mission Statement of the Taxonomies & Controlled Vocabularies Special Interest Group
of the American Society for Indexing

The Taxonomies & Controlled Vocabularies Special Interest Group (SIG) is a networking and educational forum for individuals with both a professional interest or background in indexing and involvement, or intentions to get involved, in creating or editing taxonomies, thesauri, or controlled vocabularies used for indexing. They may either be freelancers, contractors, or consultants, or work as in-house developers of taxonomies, thesauri, or controlled vocabularies, such as for publishers, database vendors, search software developers, etc.

Members of the Taxonomies & Controlled Vocabularies SIG must be members in good standing of the American Society for Indexing (ASI) or one of its affiliated indexing societies:

The best people to create thesauri and controlled vocabularies used in human indexing are those who have experience indexing themselves. By supporting the work of professional indexers in controlled vocabulary and thesaurus work, we support higher standards for controlled vocabularies, which better serve the indexers who use them and the indexing profession as a whole.

We recognize that some controlled vocabularies and taxonomies will be used in automated rather than human indexing. By being willing to work on all kinds of taxonomy projects, regardless of the indexing method, indexing society members will bring a greater awareness and appreciation of human indexers and the indexing profession to the growing field of taxonomies.

Taxonomies, controlled vocabularies, and thesauri have been an area of continued interest of members of the American Society for Indexing as evidenced by the numerous articles on these topics in Key Words and the presentations and workshops at ASI and chapter conferences over the past years. The Taxonomies & Controlled Vocabularies SIG will encourage its members to write articles, including reviews, and give presentations in new areas, issues, and specialties in the field.

The Taxonomies & Controlled Vocabularies SIG will:

  1. Act as a forum for discussion of techniques, tools, standards and practices relevant to creating or maintaining taxonomies, thesauri, or controlled vocabularies.
  2. Provide information to indexers who want to expand their field and apply their skills to work in taxonomies and controlled vocabularies.
  3. Make taxonomy owners and consultants aware that there exist skilled indexing professionals available who are qualified to take on taxonomy projects.
  4. Serve Taxonomies & Controlled Vocabularies SIG members as a centralized source for referring contract projects and jobs.
  5. Promote among indexers, vocabulary editors, taxonomists, taxonomy owners, taxonomy consultants, publishers, librarians and others an awareness of and appreciation for good practices and standards used in developing taxonomies and controlled vocabularies.

October 22, 2007