SKOS overview article on IBM developerWorks

SKOS, vocabulary management, the semantic web, and more

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2021-09-30: The article referenced below has since been taken off of the IBM developerWorks site, so I republished it here.

I’ve been interested in the SKOS standard for vocabulary management for several years (and written about it here several times), but since we at TopQuadrant first began planning out the Enterprise Vocabulary Net product, I’ve learned a lot more about the theory and practice of using SKOS. I’ve recently written up an overview of SKOS and where it fits into vocabulary management and the semantic web, and IBM developerWorks has just published this as Improve your taxonomy management using the W3C SKOS standard. I hope it provides useful to people who want to learn more about SKOS.


By John Cowan on May 11, 2011 1:50 PM

“Mutt” has a specific meaning, so it’s a bad example. Lassie is a Rough Collie, Old Yeller is a mutt (a Labrador Retriever / Mastiff cross). “Mutt” should be an en-US alternative label for the concept whose preferred labels are “mongrel” (en-GB) and “mixed-breed dog” (en-US), which would be a hyponym of “dog”.

But there’s no need to go into all that. Instead, you can just fix the article by replacing “mutt” with “pooch”.

By Simon Spero on May 11, 2011 5:35 PM

So what can you reliably infer about the relationship between [Bulldog] and [Mammal]?

By Bob DuCharmeAuthor Profile Page{.commenter-profile} on May 11, 2011 5:44 PM

I was going to say that Mammal is a broader term for Bulldog, but says that " the properties skos:broader and skos:narrower are not declared as transitive properties" and that the skos:broaderTransitive property is provided to indicate such a relationship. I could use that if I wanted to more explicitly set up a taxonomy that I was defining to make it clear that I wanted Mammal to be seen as broader than Bulldog.

By Simon Spero on May 11, 2011 6:22 PM

But broaderTransitive is not supposed to be asserted, and is not guaranteed to be valid (see the SKOS Primer)…


By Thomas Bandholtz on May 13, 2011 3:19 AM

in this article you mention iQvoc with a link to a German Web page which only describes this SKOS tool. Meanwhile iQvoc 3.0 is available under an Apache 2.0 license at

Best regards,