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An Enterprise Ontology-Based Approach to Service Specification

Type of publication Peer-reviewed
Publikationsform Original article (peer-reviewed)
Author Terlouw Linda, Albani Antonia,
Project Theory-driven Situational Design of Enterprise Information Systems
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Original article (peer-reviewed)

Journal IEEE Transactions on Service Computing
Title of proceedings IEEE Transactions on Service Computing
DOI 10.1109/TSC.2011.38


In recent years, the WSDL and UDDI standards arose as ad-hoc standards for the definition of service interfaces and service registries. However, even together these standards do not provide enough basis for a service consumer to get a full understanding of the behavior of a service. In practice this often leads to a serious mismatch between the provider's intent and the consumer's expectations concerning the functionality of the corresponding service. Though additional standards have been proposed, a holistic view of what aspects of a service need to be specified is still lacking. This paper proposes a service definition, a service classification, and service specification framework, all based on a founded theory, the Psi-theory. The Psi-theory originates from the scientific fields of Language Philosophy and Systemic Ontology. According to this theory, the operation of organizations is all about communication between and production by social actors. The service specification framework can be applied both for specifying human services, i.e. services executed by human beings, and IT services, i.e. services executed by IT systems.