A Conceptual Framework for Enterprise Interoperability

A Conceptual Framework for Enterprise Interoperability

Wided Guédria (CRP Henri Tudor, Luxembourg)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-8111-8.ch030
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Abstract

The obligation to become more competitive and effective in providing better products and services requires enterprises to transform from traditional businesses into networked businesses. One of the challenges faced by a network of enterprises is the development of interoperability between its members. Transformations in this context are usually driven by Enterprise Interoperability (EI) problems that may be faced. In order to quickly overcome these problems, enterprises need characterizing and assessing interoperability to be prepared to establish means for collaboration and initiate corrective actions before potential interoperability problems occur and then be obliged to make unprepared transformations that may be costly and induce unmanageable issues. This has become a significant research challenge over the past few years and maturity models have been developed in response to this challenge. In this paper we propose to extend a maturity model based on an ontological formalization of the interoperability domain. This will allow diagnosing interoperability problems when assessing EI and having a conceptual framework as basis for an automatic assessment tool.
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Research Context

Generally speaking, interoperability is the ability of two or more systems or components to exchange information and to use the information that has been exchanged (IEEE., 1990). When this ability is not achieved, interoperability becomes a problem that must be solved.

Solutions to interoperability problems can be characterized according to interoperability approaches defined in (ISO14258, 1999). EI problems can be localized into interoperability barriers and characterized by EI concerns, as defined in the Framework for Enterprise Interoperability (FEI). FEI has been initially elaborated in INTEROP NoE (Chen, Dassisti, & Elvester, 2007) and is now published as an international standard (ISO 11354 - 1). It defines a classification scheme for interoperability knowledge according to three dimensions:

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