Research is the core task of STI Innsbruck. Our motto is "Enabling Semantics". Find out more about our current research directions!
Business Process Management focuses on managing the execution of IT-supported business operations from a business expert's process view rather than from a technical perspective. The underlying motivation for BPM is that organizations need to continuously align their running business processes, as executed within multiple heterogeneous systems, with the required processes as derived from business needs. BPM has gained significant attention in both research and industry, and a range of BPM tools are available. However, the degree of mechanization in BPM is currently very limited. The major obstacle preventing a coherent view on business processes is that the business processes are not accessible to machine reasoning. Additionally, businesses cannot query their process space by logical expressions, e.g. in order to identify activities relevant to comply with regulations. Founded on ontologies Semantic Web technology provides scalable methods and tools for the machine-readable representation of knowledge. Semantic Web Services (SWS) make use of Semantic Web technology to support the automated discovery, substitution, composition, and execution of software components (Web Services). BPM is a natural application for Semantic Web and SWS technology, because the latter provide large-scale, standardized knowledge representation techniques for executable artefacts. Our proposal is to combine SWS and BPM, and develop one consolidated technology. Specifically, we will create horizontal ontologies which describe business processes; vertical telecommunications oriented ontologies to support domain-specific annotation for our chosen economic sector; and a suite of tools based on the results of the SEKT and DIP IPs. Together with the other ESSI projects this will further strengthen the global leadership of EU-funded technology development.