Faceted Knowledge Organization

Properties of facets

  • facets represent viewpoints or aspects
  • facets are based on the insight that universal classification schemes usually fail due to the cultural and social nature of classification
  • facets are modules that can be combined
  • each single facet is consistent and exhaustive; different facets are independent of each other which means that changes to one facet do not affect other facets; the knowledge represented by a combination of facets can be incomplete and inconsistent

    History of facets

  • Ranganathan (1940's) invented "facets" to represent different aspects in a library classification scheme. He suggested the main facets "personality, matter, energy, space, time"
  • Guttman (1950's) invented "facets" independently of Ranganathan as a means of structuring sociological surveys