• Home
  • ISKO UK Meetup: Creativity in Knowledge Organization

ISKO UK Meetup: Creativity in Knowledge Organization

  • 26 Feb 2019
  • 6:30 PM - 8:00 PM
  • Canada Water Culture Space, 21 Surrey Quays Road, London, SE16 7AR · London

Registration is closed

This session will look at some aspects of creativity. The development of knowledge organization systems requires imagination and lateral thinking. The purpose of this session is to explore some of the techniques used to encourage creativity.

Teresa Viarengo and Andrew Haynes use two compelling stories to illustrate creativity in knowledge organization.

Ted - Socrates’ Dog uses stories to organize knowledge

Ted and his canine friends explain their interpretation of the world to humans. They express their thoughts with the help of Socrates, Plato, Nietzsche, and other philosophers. Their challenge was organising the massive amount of knowledge collected from their research to communicate their vision of the world successfully.

Teresa Viarengo is the author of Ted Socrates’ Dog, which uses humour to illustrate key ideas in philosophy. 

Knowledge Organization and Stories from the Car Industry

Andrew and Teresa will share stories about how knowledge was organized in the car industry as it evolved:

  • Henry Ford pioneered mass-production systems replacing craft production
  • Alfred Sloan in General Motors applied a mass-marketing approach to selling mass-produced cars
  • Kiichiro Toyoda developed the Just-in-Time production system at Toyota and its suppliers
  • Taiichi Ohno invented lean manufacturing, the foundation of the Toyota Production System
  • Elon Musk created an electric vehicle ecosystem where software is an integral element of the product.

This presentation is adapted from Andrew Haynes’ recent dissertation submitted for a Masters of Innovation, Creativity & Leadership at the Cass Business School.

This workshop will take place at the Canada Water Culture Space, just next to the Canada Water tube station on the Jubilee line. The event is free to ISKO UK members and £5 for non-members (option to pay at the door)


This was a lively presentation looking at the nature of creativity and relating this to knowledge organization. Andrew Haynes spoke eloquently about the role of creativity in the development of the motor industry, which started out as a craft industry. Paradigm-breakers changed the way in which automobiles were manufactured starting with the introduction of mass production by Henry Ford. Sloan of General Motors moved things along by allowing more tailoring to suit individual tastes. He also systematically researched his markets and introduced delegation of responsibilities to allow expansion to a much greater size. Companies like Toyota focused on quality of manufacture and devolving responsibility for quality management to the shop floor. Elon Musk innovated by developing battery technology for electric cars and has since diversified into electricity networks for storing and delivering energy from renewable sources. All these examples of creativity demonstrate the importance of being able to step beyond current practices and to look at new ways of doing things.

Teresa Viarengo then spoke about the creative process that she went through when writing her book, Ted - Socrates' Dog: How Dogs Interpret the World. In her talk she took us into the imagined mind of a dog through story-telling. She gave a fascinating insight into how ideas emerge from seemingly random thoughts and emphasised the necessity and importance of organizing the emergent ideas into themes and topics. Although she uses an Apple Mac for her online research and writing she also uses manual methods for arranging ideas and concepts. She described how her office walls turned into a conceptual map of the ideas in the book. Imagine lots of sticky-notes in different colours and positions being moved around in order to create some kind of order. As an added bonus, participants were given complementary copies of Teresa’s book.

The two presentations led to a lively discussion among the 11 participants about creating and organizing ideas for ontology development. Some participants felt very strongly that it was difficult to beat the physical artefacts for arranging ideas. This is particularly important in the early stages, as it allows an overview of an entire domain. Others felt that computer-based tools such as mind mapping play an important role. The challenge does not seem to be generating ideas but rather capturing and organizing them in a systematic way.

Privacy Policy
Copyright policy
Cookie Policy

Copyright 2024 UK Chapter of the International Society for Knowledge Organization

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software