Facets and Taxonomies

As we have been adding datasets and resources to our DKAN application, we have discovered that the default searching and filtering that is provided does not give adequate control over the data. After all, the census is a huge collection of data about every household and individual in the UK!

Our team have been playing around more with the DKAN interface and have now added different facets to aid users in finding the data they require by using different filters.

The first step to offering this functionality was to create the taxonomies of the terms and reorder them into a meaningful list as well as creating any hierarchies (if they were appropriate).

  • Topics
    This is a broad classification of the data based on the different topics included in the census. It includes things such as Religion, Ethnicity, and Education and qualifications.
  • Keywords
    The keywords attached to each dataset are similar to the Topics but at a more descriptive level. They’ll enable users to find data simply by searching for a word that is similar in meaning to the actual terms used in the census.
    One example of this might be a user searching for ‘gender’ when the actual word used across the census was ‘sex’.
    We currently have over 100 searchable terms including such things as civil partnerships, dwellings, jobs, and nationality.
  • Area Type
    This provides a list of the geographical areas used that the datasets are describing. This includes things such as Middle Super Output Areas, Local Government Districts, and Census Datazones.

Getting these to display correctly in the interface was a little trickier but, after a few hours, we finally got these to show up properly. The lists are dynamic and as you click on one term, it will filter out the other terms and the results that don’t match. After only a few clicks you could have narrowed it down from thousands of datasets to just the one you were looking for!

Do you have any suggestions about how these facets could be improved? Maybe you wouldn’t ever use one of these and think they’re unnecessary? Whatever your thoughts, please leave a comment and let our team know.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *