Keyword Search over Relational Databases: Issues, Approaches and Open Challenges

  • Sonia Bergamaschi
  • Francesco Guerra
  • Giovanni Simonini
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 8173)


In this paper, we overview the main research approaches developed in the area of Keyword Search over Relational Databases. In particular, we model the process for solving keyword queries in three phases: the management of the user’s input, the search algorithms, the results returned to the user. For each phase we analyze the main problems, the solutions adopted by the most important system developed by researchers and the open challenges. Finally, we introduce two open issues related to multi-source scenarios and database sources handling instance not fully accessible.


  1. 1.
    Aditya, B., Bhalotia, G., Chakrabarti, S., Hulgeri, A., Nakhe, C., Parag, Sudarshan, S.: Banks: Browsing and keyword searching in relational databases. In: VLDB Conference, pp. 1083–1086 (2002)Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Agrawal, S., Chaudhuri, S., Das, G.: Dbxplorer: A system for keyword-based search over relational databases. In: ICDE Conference, pp. 5–16. IEEE Computer Society (2002)Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Bergamaschi, S., Domnori, E., Guerra, F., Lado, R.T., Velegrakis, Y.: Keyword search over relational databases: a metadata approach. In: SIGMOD Conference, pp. 565–576. ACM (2011)Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Bergamaschi, S., Domnori, E., Guerra, F., Orsini, M., Lado, R.T., Velegrakis, Y.: Keymantic: Semantic keyword-based searching in data integration systems. PVLDB 3(2), 1637–1640 (2010)Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Bergamaschi, S., Guerra, F., Rota, S., Velegrakis, Y.: A hidden markov model approach to keyword-based search over relational databases. In: Jeusfeld, M., Delcambre, L., Ling, T.-W. (eds.) ER 2011. LNCS, vol. 6998, pp. 411–420. Springer, Heidelberg (2011)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Blunschi, L., Jossen, C., Kossmann, D., Mori, M., Stockinger, K.: Soda: Generating sql for business users. PVLDB 5(10), 932–943 (2012)Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Chen, Y., Wang, W., Liu, Z., Lin, X.: Keyword search on structured and semi-structured data. In: SIGMOD Conference, pp. 1005–1010. ACM (2009)Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Coffman, J., Weaver, A.: An empirical performance evaluation of relational keyword search techniques. IEEE Transactions on Knowledge and Data Engineering (99), 1 (2012)Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Ding, B., Yu, J.X., Wang, S., Qin, L., Zhang, X., Lin, X.: Finding top-k min-cost connected trees in databases. In: ICDE Conference, pp. 836–845. IEEE (2007)Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Dreyfus, S.E., Wagner, R.A.: The steiner problem in graphs. Networks 1(3), 195–207 (1971)MathSciNetCrossRefMATHGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Guha, R.V., McCool, R., Miller, E.: Semantic search. In: WWW, pp. 700–709 (2003)Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    He, H., Wang, H., Yang, J., Yu, P.S.: Blinks: ranked keyword searches on graphs. In: SIGMOD Conference, pp. 305–316. ACM (2007)Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Hristidis, V., Gravano, L., Papakonstantinou, Y.: Efficient ir-style keyword search over relational databases. In: VLDB Conference, pp. 850–861 (2003)Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Hristidis, V., Papakonstantinou, Y.: Discover: Keyword search in relational databases. In: VLDB Conference, pp. 670–681 (2002)Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Kacholia, V., Pandit, S., Chakrabarti, S., Sudarshan, S., Desai, R., Karambelkar, H.: Bidirectional expansion for keyword search on graph databases. In: VLDB Conference, pp. 505–516. ACM (2005)Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Kasneci, G., Ramanath, M., Sozio, M., Suchanek, F.M., Weikum, G.: Star: Steiner-tree approximation in relationship graphs. In: ICDE Conference, pp. 868–879. IEEE (2009)Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Ma, Z., Pant, G., Sheng, O.R.L.: Interest-based personalized search. ACM Trans. Inf. Syst. 25(1) (2007)Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Madhavan, J., Halevy, A.Y., Cohen, S., Dong, X.L., Jeffery, S.R., Ko, D., Yu, C.: Structured data meets the web: A few observations. IEEE Data Engineering Bullettin 29(4), 19–26 (2006)Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Markowetz, A., Yang, Y., Papadias, D.: Keyword search on relational data streams. In: SIGMOD Conference, SIGMOD 2007, pp. 605–616. ACM (2007)Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    Navigli, R.: Word sense disambiguation: A survey. ACM Computing Surveys 41(2) (2009)Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    Po, L., Sorrentino, S.: Automatic generation of probabilistic relationships for improving schema matching. Information Systems 36(2), 192–208 (2011)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    Qin, L., Yu, J.X., Chang, L.: Keyword search in databases: the power of rdbms. In: SIGMOD Conference, pp. 681–694. ACM (2009)Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    Sayyadian, M., LeKhac, H., Doan, A., Gravano, L.: Efficient keyword search across heterogeneous relational databases. In: ICDE Conference, pp. 346–355. IEEE (2007)Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    Simitsis, A., Koutrika, G., Ioannidis, Y.E.: Précis: from unstructured keywords as queries to structured databases as answers. VLDB Journal 17(1), 117–149 (2008)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. 25.
    Tata, S., Lohman, G.M.: SQAK: doing more with keywords. In: SIGMOD Conference, pp. 889–902. ACM (2008)Google Scholar
  26. 26.
    Trillo, R., Gracia, J., Espinoza, M., Mena, E.: Discovering the semantics of user keywords. Journal of Universal Computer Science 13(12), 1908–1935 (2007)Google Scholar
  27. 27.
    Wang, H., Zhang, K., Liu, Q., Tran, T., Yu, Y.: Q2Semantic: A lightweight keyword interface to semantic search. In: Bechhofer, S., Hauswirth, M., Hoffmann, J., Koubarakis, M. (eds.) ESWC 2008. LNCS, vol. 5021, pp. 584–598. Springer, Heidelberg (2008)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. 28.
    Webber, W.: Evaluating the effectiveness of keyword search. IEEE Data Engineering Bulletin 33(1), 55–60 (2010)Google Scholar
  29. 29.
    Wright, A.: Searching the deep web. Communications of ACM 51(10), 14–15 (2008)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. 30.
    Yu, J.X., Qin, L., Chang, L.: Keyword Search in Databases. Synthesis Lectures on Data Management. Morgan & Claypool Pub. (2010)Google Scholar
  31. 31.
    Zenz, G., Zhou, X., Minack, E., Siberski, W., Nejdl, W.: From keywords to semantic queries-incremental query construction on the semantic web. Journal of Web Semantics 7(3), 166–176 (2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. 32.
    Zhuang, Z., Cucerzan, S.: Exploiting semantic query context to improve search ranking. In: ICSC Conference, pp. 50–57. IEEE Computer Society (2008)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sonia Bergamaschi
    • 1
  • Francesco Guerra
    • 1
  • Giovanni Simonini
    • 2
  1. 1.Dipartimento di Ingegneria “Enzo Ferrari”Università di Modena e Reggio EmiliaItaly
  2. 2.International Doctorate School in ICTUniversità di Modena e Reggio EmiliaItaly

Personalised recommendations