Fostering distributed business logic in Open Collaborative Networks: an integrated approach based on semantic and swarm coordination
Given the great opportunities provided by Open Collaborative Networks (OCNs), their success depends on the effective integration of composite business logic at all stages. However, a dilemma between cooperation and competition is often found in environments where the access to business knowledge can provide absolute advantages over the competition. Indeed, although it is apparent that business logic should be automated for an effective integration, chain participants at all segments are often highly protective of their own knowledge. In this paper, we propose a solution to this problem by outlining a novel approach with a supporting architectural view. In our approach, business rules are modeled via semantic web and their execution is coordinated by a workflow model. Each company’s rule can be kept as private, and the business rules can be combined together to achieve goals with defined interdependencies and responsibilities in the workflow. The use of a workflow model allows assembling business facts together while protecting data source. We propose a privacy-preserving perturbation technique which is based on digital stigmergy. Stigmergy is a processing schema based on the principle of self-aggregation of marks produced by data. Stigmergy allows protecting data privacy, because only marks are involved in aggregation, in place of actual data values, without explicit data modeling. This paper discusses the proposed approach and examines its characteristics through actual scenarios.
KeywordsOpen Collaborative Network Workflow Business rule Web ontology Data perturbation Stigmergy
This research has been partially supported in the research and innovation project entitled “PMI 3.0”, which has been co-financed by the Tuscany Region (Italy) for the growth of the small-medium enterprises.
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