Special Theme

Electronic Markets

, 21:99

First online:

Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.

Do semantic standards lack quality? A survey among 34 semantic standards

  • Erwin FolmerAffiliated withTNO & University of Twente Email author 
  • , Paul Oude LuttighuisAffiliated withNovay
  • , Jos van HillegersbergAffiliated withUniversity of Twente


The adoption of standards to improve interoperability in the automotive, aerospace, shipbuilding and other sectors could save billions. While interoperability standards have been created for a number of industries, problems persist, suggesting a lack of quality of the standards themselves. The issue of semantic standard quality is not often addressed. In this research we take a closer look at the quality of semantics standards, development processes, and survey the current state of the quality of semantic standards by means of a questionnaire that was sent to standards developers. This survey looked at 34 semantic standards, and it shows that the quality of semantic standards for inter-organizational interoperability can be improved. Improved standards may advance interoperability in networked business. Improvement of semantic standards requires transparency of their quality. Although many semantic standard development organisations already have quality assurance in place, this research shows that they could benefit from a quality measuring instrument.


Networked business Semantic standards Quality Interoperability Adoption