Emma Chittenden, founder of Web Whisperer. Emma is a freelance information strategist and naming scientist, who specialises in fixing navigation problems. Her last public sector gig was at NHS Digital, where she was a taxonomy expert, working on the search. She has a background in user experience, digital content and coaching. At Web Whisperer, she’s developing some training courses to demystify practices like taxonomy and ontology, and bring them into the mainstream

The blurby background bit

The highlights I always give when I’m talking about my career, in bite-sized chunks…

I don’t have a degree or any formal qualifications, I’m completely self-taught

This year is my 25th year in my career (yes, I feel very old writing that)

Started working in tech support for ICL, diagnosing and fixing computer problems over the phone

Moved into digital design field in 2004 when I commissioned a bespoke CMS and built a site from the ground up for the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA)

Roles I’ve done include, project, change and account management, business analysis, information architecture, user experience design and taxonomist

I’ve been a freelance / contractor for approx. 15 years of my career (I make a terrible permanent employee)


  • Strategy

  • Navigation design

  • Information strategy

  • Naming science

  • Benchmarking & testing

  • Search design

  • Operational design

  • Metadata / controlled vocabulary design

  • Information architecture

  • Maturity modelling

  • Federated ecosystem design

  • Interaction design

  • Mobile application & game design

  • Business analysis


I’m channeling a bit of an MVP attitude at the mo, as I’m juggling a lot of things. This is an MVP list of the organisations I’ve worked for in the last 15 years. 

I’ll be adding more in the way of case studies of the work I’ve done, when I’ve had a spare 10 minutes to write them 🤦🏼‍♀️.

Information Strategist

BP | Current

Lead taxonomist

NHS Digital | 2020 – 2022

Freelance consultant

Grant Thornton International | 2019
Blu for Imperial Tobacco | 2018 – 2019
The Astro Twins | 2018

Global Head of Information Architecture

Pearson | 2016 -2017

Freelance consultant

Open University |2015
True Digital on Wealthify |2015
Gyro for Accenture |2015

Senior User Experience Consultant

Nomensa | 2014 – 2015

Head of UX

Jaywing | 2010 – 2014