Ontology-Based Registries: An E-Business Transactions’ Registry

Ontology-Based Registries: An E-Business Transactions’ Registry

Aikaterini Maria Sourouni (National Technical University of Athens, Greece), Spiros Mouzakitis (National Technical University of Athens, Greece), George Kourlimpini (National Technical University of Athens, Greece), Dimitris Askounis (National Technical University of Athens, Greece) and John Psarras (National Technical University of Athens, Greece)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-61692-016-6.ch006
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In the dawn of 21st century, there has been substantial technological progress in the area of e-Business. However, despite the fact of e-Business evolution, the adoption of new internet-based technologies in the business environment is still limited, especially in the sector of small and medium (SMEs) or very small enterprises (VSEs), (Androutselis, 2005). In parallel, the to-date efforts for developing and adopting e-Business solutions has been targeted more towards the Business-to-Consumer (B2C) and the Business-to-Business (B2B) of same interests –same business sector– area and not so vitally towards the area, which this chapter addresses to. This area comprises the Business to Business (B2B), Business to Government (B2G) and Business to Intermediaries (B2I) –such as Banks and Public Insurance Institutions– transactions between Entrepreneurial, Governmental and Banking Organizations of different countries (cross-border) or of different interests/operation domains (cross-sector).

Background to Ontologies

The term of Ontology derives from Philosophy’s domain, meaning a systematic assessment of existence. A short interpretation of the term “Ontology”, that T.R. Gruber has provided and R. Studer improved is the following (Gruber, 1995): “An explicit and methodological specification of a conceptualization“. With the term of conceptualization T.R. Gruber (1995) defines an abstract aspect of the real world that needs to be modelled and represented.

Last decades ontologies have entered the area of the Computer Science and nowadays comprise a manifold and effective approach for electronic information. The major sectors for potential commercial applications of ontologies are (TOVE Project):

  • Information and Knowledge Management, such as World Wide Web, knowledge sharing etc.

  • E-business, such as in the Supply Chain Management field.

The object-oriented software systems are usually based on an ontology. So, in the case of software tools and applications, Ontologies can be used at different levels (Gruninger, 1995), such as:

  • During the design and development of application systems, contributing particularly to the specification, reliability and reusability of the systems.

  • At the communication level providing easy data exchange.

  • At the Interoperability level, facilitating Data, Function and Process Interoperability.

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