As demands for knowledge management have broadened the use of taxonomies, taxonomists are finding more applications for their work and seeking ways to ensure the products are implemented well for added value. This special section provides a brief guide to building taxonomies for standardized use by multiple work groups. A case study in taxonomy maintenance traces the process of updating and expanding a vocabulary to serve the burgeoning world of science. One article addresses practical methods for evaluating taxonomy schemes and the decision making involved in applying terms to classify content. Another explores taxonomies as navigational tools and as the basis for automatic classification and ways those specialized uses influence taxonomy design. The importance of integrating and coordinating taxonomy construction in the developmental phase of website architecture is explained as being key to maximizing the taxonomy's value and contribution to user experience. The application of taxonomies and automated indexing in the health domain is presented, discussing their innovative implementation for coding electronic medical records.