An Ontology Design Pattern for Referential Qualities

  • Jens Ortmann
  • Desiree Daniel
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 7031)


Referential qualities are qualities of an entity taken with reference to another entity. For example the vulnerability of a coast to sea level rise. In contrast to most non-relational qualities which only depend on their host, referential qualities require a referent additional to their host, i.e. a quality Q of an entity X taken with reference to another entity R. These qualities occur frequently in ecological systems, which make concepts from these systems challenging to model in formal ontology. In this paper, we discuss exemplary resilience, vulnerability and affordance as qualities of an entity taken with reference to an external factor. We suggest an ontology design pattern for referential qualities. The design pattern is anchored in the foundational ontology DOLCE and evaluated using implementations for the notions affordance, resilience and vulnerability.


Relational Quality Formal Ontology Quality Space Ontology Engineer Climate Change Knowledge 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jens Ortmann
    • 1
  • Desiree Daniel
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute for GeoinformaticsUniversity of MuensterGermany

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