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Semantic business process modeling [Elektronische Ressource] : facilitating the design and verification of conceptual process models / von Ivan Markovic

220 pages
Semantic Business Process ModelingFacilitating the design and verification of conceptual processmodelsZur Erlangung des akademischen Grades einesDoktors der Wirtschaftswissenschaften(Dr. rer. pol.)von der Fakultät für Wdes Karlsruher Instituts für Technologie (KIT)vorgelegteDISSERTATIONvonDipl.-Ing. Ivan MarkovicTag der mündlichen Prüfung: 03. August 2009Referent: Prof. Dr. Rudi StuderKorreferent: Prof. Dr. Dimitris Karagiannis2010 KarlsruheiiAcknowledgementsWriting of this thesis was a journey, the success of which would not have beenpossible without the support and guidance of many persons. Here, I would like tothank all of them. In particular, I wish to thank:Professor Dr. Rudi Studer, for being my Doktorvater and for giving me theopportunity to be a part of the Rudiverse.Professor Dr. Dimitris Karagiannis, for being my second supervisor and provid-ing inspiration through his work on metamodeling.Nenad Stojanovic, for insightful discussions and constructive criticism. Chris-tian Brelage, for raising my interest in business process modeling and a great senseof humor. Ingo Weber, for setting high standards and always raising the bar. OrestisTerzidis, for being the best manager I worked with.All my co-authors and anonymous reviewers, for helping to sharpen the ideaspresented here.My students, for their dedication and energy.Colleagues at SAP Research Karlsruhe and Brisbane, for allowing me to becomea friend over the years.
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Semantic Business Process Modeling
Facilitating the design and verification of conceptual process
models
Zur Erlangung des akademischen Grades eines
Doktors der Wirtschaftswissenschaften
(Dr. rer. pol.)
von der Fakultät für W
des Karlsruher Instituts für Technologie (KIT)
vorgelegte
DISSERTATION
von
Dipl.-Ing. Ivan Markovic
Tag der mündlichen Prüfung: 03. August 2009
Referent: Prof. Dr. Rudi Studer
Korreferent: Prof. Dr. Dimitris Karagiannis
2010 KarlsruheiiAcknowledgements
Writing of this thesis was a journey, the success of which would not have been
possible without the support and guidance of many persons. Here, I would like to
thank all of them. In particular, I wish to thank:
Professor Dr. Rudi Studer, for being my Doktorvater and for giving me the
opportunity to be a part of the Rudiverse.
Professor Dr. Dimitris Karagiannis, for being my second supervisor and provid-
ing inspiration through his work on metamodeling.
Nenad Stojanovic, for insightful discussions and constructive criticism. Chris-
tian Brelage, for raising my interest in business process modeling and a great sense
of humor. Ingo Weber, for setting high standards and always raising the bar. Orestis
Terzidis, for being the best manager I worked with.
All my co-authors and anonymous reviewers, for helping to sharpen the ideas
presented here.
My students, for their dedication and energy.
Colleagues at SAP Research Karlsruhe and Brisbane, for allowing me to become
a friend over the years.
My family and good friends, for always having faith in me and encouraging me
to make this thesis happen.
Geli, for unconditional love and understanding.
Ivan MarkovicivAbstract
Process orientation was introduced to achieve a holistic view on an enterprise, us-
ing business processes as the main instrument for organizing enterprise operations.
In this context, business process modeling has become a popular technique for cap-
turing business processes. Business process models enable a better understanding
of business processes, identify their improvement options, facilitate communication
between business analysts and IT experts and serve as a basis for the management
and execution of processes in IT systems. As such, they are regarded as valuable
design artifacts.
However, several important problems in business process modeling have
emerged. First, business processes are often viewed in isolation, without explicit
consideration of their broader organizational context - business strategy and goals,
business directives, etc. Second, the popular tools used for process modeling pro-
vide little modeling guidance or reuse functionalities to the user. Third, conceptual
process models may contain formal errors which often can not be analyzed on a
semantic level. As a result, business process models are decoupled form strategic
concerns, the modeling of processes is still highly complex, and the modeling errors
are propagated further down the development lifecycle whereby their cost increases
exponentially.
In order to address these problems, this thesis contributes a business process
modeling framework based on semantic technologies. The framework consists of languages, methods and tools, which aim at facilitating the design and
improving the quality of business process models.
As framework foundations, we first define a process-oriented enterprise ontol-
ogy in order to integrate all relevant aspects for describing business pro-
cesses on a semantic level. Second, we propose a methodology which provides
guidance for utilizing semantic technologies in business process modeling. Based
on these foundations, we design modeling techniques (languages and methods) that
allow for semantic modeling of business motivation, business policies and rules, and
business processes. In order to instantiate these modeling techniques, we develop
modeling tools for semantic modeling of business motivation (Maestro4BM), busi-
ness policies and rules (Maestro4BPR) and business processes (Maestro4BPMN).
Quality of the proposed modeling framework is evaluated based on the modeling
content of SAP Solution Composer and several real-world business scenarios.viContents
I Foundations 1
1 Introduction 3
1.1 Motivation and Problem . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
1.2 Research Contributions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
1.3ch Methodology . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6
1.3.1 Information Systems Research Framework . . . . . . . . . . . 6
1.3.2 Adherence to the Framework Guidelines . . . . . . . . . . . . 7
1.4 Publications . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9
1.5 Structure of the Thesis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
2 Basic Concepts and Technologies 13
2.1 Business Process Management . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
2.2 Process Modeling . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18
2.2.1 Perspectives on Business Processes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19
2.2.2 Business Process Modeling Languages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19
2.3 Semantic Technologies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21
2.3.1 Ontologies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21
2.3.2 Ontology Languages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23
2.3.3 Reasoning . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24
2.3.4 WSML-Flight Language and Reasoning . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25
2.4 Semantic Business Process Management . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27
2.5 Summary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29
II Semantic Business Process Modeling Framework 31
3 Framework Foundations 33
3.1 Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33
3.2 Understanding Conceptual Process Models . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33
3.2.1 Process Knowledge in Models . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34
3.2.2 Process Perspectives . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35
3.2.3 Abstraction Levels in Process Modeling . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36
3.3 Process-oriented Enterprise Ontology Framework . . . . . . . . . . . 40
3.3.1 Business Motivation (BMO) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40
3.3.2 Policies and Rules Ontology (BPRO) . . . . . . . . . 42viii CONTENTS
3.3.3 Business Process Ontology (BPO) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43
3.3.4 Business Functions (BFO) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43
3.3.5 Organizational Ontology (OO) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44
3.3.6 Business Resources Ontology (BRO) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44
3.3.7 Application of the Framework . . . . . . . . . . . . 45
3.3.8 Related Work . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46
3.4 Semantic Business Process Modeling Methodology . . . . . . . . . . 47
3.4.1 Motivation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 48
3.4.2 Business Policy and Rule Modeling . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50
3.4.3 Process Modeling . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50
3.4.4 Business Process Verification . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 52
3.4.5 Related Work . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 53
3.5 Conclusion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 53
4 Modeling of Business Motivation 55
4.1 Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 55
4.2 Core Ontology for Business pRocess Analysis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 56
4.3 Requirements Analysis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 58
4.4 Approach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 59
4.4.1 Business Motivation Ontology . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 59
4.4.2 BMO-driven Strategic Analysis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 67
4.5 Implementation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 71
4.5.1 Maestro for Business Motivation Modeling . . . . . . . . . . . 71
4.5.2 Ontology-driven Design Support . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 73
4.5.3 Gap Analysis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 74
4.5.4 Maestro for Business Queries . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 74
4.6 Related Work . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 75
4.7 Conclusion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 77
5 Modeling and Verification of Business Policies and Rules 79
5.1 Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 79
5.2 Requirements Analysis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 80
5.3 Approach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 81
5.3.1 Overview . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 82
5.3.2 Modeling of Business Policies and Rules . . . . . . . . . . . . 84
5.3.3 Context-based Policy Matching . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 88
5.3.4 Policy Verification . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 91
5.4 Implementation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 92
5.4.1 Maestro for Business Policies and Rules . . . . . . . . . . . . . 92
5.4.2 Policy Matchmaker . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 94
5.4.3 Verificator . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 96
5.5 Related Work . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 96
5.6 Conclusion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 98CONTENTS ix
6 Modeling, Annotation and Querying of Business Processes 101
6.1 Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 101
6.2 Requirements Analysis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 102
6.3 Preliminaries . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 103
6.3.1 p-calculus . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 103
6.3.2 Whyp-calculus? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 103
6.3.3 Workflow Patterns . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 104
6.4 Approach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 104
6.4.1 Overview . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 105
6.4.2 Modeling of Business Processes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 106
6.4.3 Query Engine . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 114
6.4.4 Soundness Verification . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 114
6.5 Implementation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 114
6.6 Related Work . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 117
6.7 Conclusion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 119
III Finale 121
7 Evaluation 123
7.1 Comparison with Influential Modeling Approaches . . . . . . . . . . 123
7.1.1 Criteria . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 124
7.1.2 Comparative Description . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 124
7.2 Enabling SBP Modeling with Solution Composer . . . . . . . . . . . . 128
7.2.1 Conceptualization of Business Maps . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 131
7.2.2 Representational Completeness of the SBP Modeling Frame-
work . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 133
7.2.3 Creating a Semantic Business Process Repository . . . . . . . 134
7.2.4 Performance Experiments . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 138
7.3 Maestro4BPR Evaluation Scenarios . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 139
7.3.1 Access Control . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 139
7.3.2 Separation of Duty (SoD) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 143
7.3.3 Summary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 146
7.4 Impact . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 147
7.5 Chapter Conclusions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 148
8 Conclusions and Outlook 149
8.1 Summary of Contributions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 149
8.2 Outlook . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 151
8.2.1 Extending the SBP Modeling Framework . . . . . . . . . . . . 151
8.2.2 Ontology-based Evaluation of OMG Business Modeling Stan-
dards . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 151
8.2.3 From Conceptual Models to Running Systems . . . . . . . . . 151x CONTENTS
IV Appendix 153
A List of Publications 155
B Business Motivation Ontology 159
C Business Visual Modeling Constructs 175
D Business Process Ontology 177
E BPO representation of the Simple Merge pattern in Fig. 6.3 181
F Business Policies and Rules Ontology 183
G Policy Recommendation Ontology 185
H Business Policies and Rules Visual Modeling Constructs 187
References 191