Deontic Process Diagrams

  • Felix KossakEmail author
  • Christa Illibauer
  • Verena Geist
  • Christine Natschläger
  • Thomas Ziebermayr
  • Bernhard Freudenthaler
  • Theodorich Kopetzky
  • Klaus-Dieter Schewe


In most BPMLs, modality is implicitly expressed through the structure of the process flow, so all activities are (tacitly) obligatory, and whenever something should be optional, a gateway is used to split the process flow, which offers the possibility to execute the activity or to do nothing. In this chapter, we present a deontic classification of tasks, that is, we explicitly classify tasks as obligatory, permissible, forbidden or alternative with respect to others. This improves readability by highlighting the modality and allows reducing the structural complexity of the process diagram. We, therefore, present a notation for deontically classified tasks, combining symbols and colour encoding, demonstrate their usage based on the Control-Flow Patterns (part of the Workflow Patterns) and provide a semantics for such tasks. Furthermore, we define a graph transformation from classical process diagrams to deontic process diagrams and prove that this transformation is terminating, confluent, and that the original diagram and the deontic diagram are semantically equivalent.


Business Process Graph Transformation Deontic Logic Business Process Execution Language Business Travel 
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.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Åqvist, L.: Deontic logic. Handbook of Philosophical Logic, vol. 8, 2nd edn, pp. 147–264. Kluwer Academic, Dordrecht (2002)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Asirelli, P., ter Beek, M.H., Gnesi, S., Fantechi, A.: Deontic logics for modeling behavioural variability. In: Benavides, D., Metzger, A., Eisenecker, U.W. (eds.) VaMoS’09. ICB Research Report, vol. 29, pp. 71–76. Universität Duisburg-Essen (2009)Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Asirelli, P., ter Beek, M.H., Gnesi, S., Fantechi, A.: A deontic logical framework for modelling product families. In: Benavides, D., Batory, D.S., Grünbacher, P. (eds.) 4th International Workshop on Variability Modelling of Software-intensive Systems (VaMoS’10). ICB-Research Report, vol. 37, pp. 37–44. Universität Duisburg-Essen (2010)Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Börger, E.: Modeling workflow patterns from first principles. In: Parent, C., Schewe, K.D., Storey, V., Thalheim, B. (eds.) Conceptual Modeling - ER 2007. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol. 4801, pp. 1–20. Springer, Berlin (2007)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Börger, E.: Approaches to modeling business processes: a critical analysis of BPMN, workflow patterns and YAWL. Softw. Syst. Model. 11(3), 305–318 (2012)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Broersen, J., Van der Torre, L.: Ten problems of deontic logic and normative reasoning in computer science. In: European Summer School of Logic, Language and Information (ESSLLI) (2010)Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Combi, C., Gambini, M.: Flaws in the flow: The weakness of unstructured business process modeling languages dealing with data. In: Meersman, R., Dillon, T., Herrero, P. (eds.) On the Move to Meaningful Internet Systems: OTM 2009. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol. 5870, pp. 42–59. Springer, Berlin (2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Ehrig, H., Pfender, M., Schneider, H.J.: Graph-grammars: an algebraic approach. In: Proceedings of FOCS 1973, pp. 167–180. IEEE (1973)Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Ehrig, H., Ehrig, K., Prange, U., Taentzer, G.: Fundamentals of Algebraic Graph Transformation. Springer, Heidelberg (2006)zbMATHGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Ghose, A., Koliadis, G.: Auditing business process compliance. Service-Oriented Computing (ICSOC). Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol. 4749, pp. 169–180. Springer, Berlin (2007)Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Goedertier, S., Vanthienen, J.: Designing compliant business processes with obligations and permissions. In: Eder, J., Dustdar, S. (eds.) Business Process Management Workshops. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol. 4103, pp. 5–14. Springer, Vienna (2006)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Goedertier, S., Vanthienen, J.: Declarative process modeling with business vocabulary and business rules. In: Meersman, R., Tari, Z., Herrero, P. (eds.) On the Move to Meaningful Internet Systems 2007: OTM 2007 Workshops. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol. 4805, pp. 603–612. Springer, Berlin (2007)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Governatori, G., Milosevic, Z.: A formal analysis of a business contract language. Int. J. Coop. Inf. Syst. 15(4), 659–685 (2006)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Hilpinen, R.: Deontic logic. In: Goble, L. (ed.) The Blackwell Guide to Philosophical Logic, chap. 8, pp. 159–182. Blackwell Publishers, Hoboken (2001)Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Kiepuszewski, B., ter Hofstede, A., Bussler, C.: On structured workflow modelling. In: Wangler, B., Bergman, L. (eds.) Advanced Information Systems Engineering. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol. 1789, pp. 431–445. Springer, Berlin (2000)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Lewis, D.: Semantic analyses for dyadic deontic logic. In: Stenlund, S. (ed.) Logical Theory and Semantic Analysis: Essays Dedicated to Stig Kanger on His Fiftieth Birthday, pp. 1–14. Reidel Publishing Co., Boston (1974)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Liu, R., Kumar, A.: An analysis and taxonomy of unstructured workflows. In: van der Aalst, W., Benatallah, B., Casati, F., Curbera, F. (eds.) Business Process Management. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol. 3649, pp. 268–284. Springer, Berlin (2005)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Lokhorst, G.J.C., Goble, L.: Mally’s deontic logic. Grazer philosophische Studien 67, 37–57 (2004)Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Mendling, J., Neumann, G., Nüttgens, M.: Towards workflow pattern support of event-driven process chains (EPC). In: Second GI-Workshop of XML for Business Process Management (XML4BPM 2005). CEUR Workshop Proceedings, vol. 145, pp. 23–28. Karlsruhe, Germany (2005)Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    Moody, D.L.: The “physics” of notations: Toward a scientific basis for constructing visual notations in software engineering. IEEE Trans. Softw. Eng. 35(6), 756–779 (2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Natschläger, C.: Deontic BPMN. In: Hameurlain, A., Liddle, S., Schewe, K., Zhou, X. (eds.) Database and Expert Systems Applications. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol. 6861, pp. 264–278. Springer, Berlin (2011)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    Natschläger, C., Geist, V., Kossak, F., Freudenthaler, B.: Optional activities in process flows. In: Rinderle-Ma, S., Weske, M. (eds.) EMISA 2012 – Der Mensch im Zentrum der Modellierung, pp. 67–80 (2012)Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    Natschläger, C., Kossak, F., Schewe, K.D.: Deontic BPMN: a powerful extension of BPMN with a trusted model transformation. Softw. Syst. Model. pp. 1–29 (2013)Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    Natschläger-Carpella, C.: Extending BPMN with Deontic Logic. Logos Verlag, Berlin (2012)Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    Object Management Group: Semantics of business vocabulary and business rules (SBVR), v1.0. (2008). Accessed 25 Sept 2015
  26. 26.
    Padmanabhan, V., Governatori, G., Sadiq, S., Colomb, R., Rotolo, A.: Process modelling: The deontic way. Proceedings of the 3rd Asia-Pacific Conference on Conceptual Modelling, vol. 53, pp. 75–84. Australian Computer Society Inc., Darlinghurst, Australia (2006)Google Scholar
  27. 27.
    Rönnedal, D.: An Introduction to Deontic Logic (2009). ISBN:978-1-4499-1694-7Google Scholar
  28. 28.
    Russell, N., ter Hofstede, A., Edmond, D., van der Aalst, W.: Workflow Resource Patterns. BETA Working Paper Series WP 127, Eindhoven University of Technology, Eindhoven (2004)Google Scholar
  29. 29.
    Russell, N., ter Hofstede, A., van der Aalst, W., Mulyar, N.: Workflow Control-Flow Patterns: A Revised View. Technical report, (2006)Google Scholar
  30. 30.
    Sadiq, S., Governatori, G., Namiri, K.: Modeling control objectives for business process compliance. In: Alonso, G., Dadam, P., Rosemann, M. (eds.) Business Process Management. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol. 4714, pp. 149–164. Springer, Berlin (2007)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. 31.
    van der Aalst, W.M.: Workflow verification: finding control-flow errors using Petri-net-based techniques. In: van der Aalst, W., Desel, J., Oberweis, A. (eds.) Business Process Management. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol. 1806, pp. 19–128. Springer, Berlin (2000)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. 32.
    van der Aalst, W.M., ter Hofstede, A.H., Kiepuszewski, B., Barros, A.P.: Workflow patterns. Distrib. Parallel Databases 14, 5–51 (2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. 33.
    van der Aalst, W.M., ter Hofstede, A.H.: Workflow patterns homepage. Accessed 25 Sept 2015
  34. 34.
    Varró, D., Varró-Gyapay, S., Ehrig, H., Prange, U., Taentzer, G.: Termination analysis of model transformations by petri nets. In: Corradini, A., Ehrig, H., Montanari, U., Ribeiro, L., Rozenberg, G. (eds.) Graph Transformations. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol. 4178, pp. 260–274. Springer, Berlin (2006)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. 35.
    Weigand, H., Verharen, E., Dignum, F.: Interoperable transactions in business models - a structured approach. In: Constantopoulos, P., Mylopoulos, J., Vassiliou, Y. (eds.) Advanced Information Systems Engineering. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol. 1080, pp. 193–209. Springer, Berlin (1996)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. 36.
    White, S.A.: Process Modeling Notations and Workflow Patterns. (2004). Accessed 25 Sept 2015
  37. 37.
    Wieringa, R., Meyer, J.J.: Applications of deontic logic in computer science: A concise overview. Deontic Logic in Computer Science: Normative System Specification, pp. 17–40. Wiley, Chichester (1993)Google Scholar
  38. 38.
    Wohed, P., van der Aalst, W., Dumas, M., ter Hofstede, A., Russell, N.: On the suitability of BPMN for business process modelling. In: Dustdar, S., Fiadeiro, J., Sheth, A. (eds.) Business Process Management. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol. 4102, pp. 161–176. Springer, New York (2006)CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Felix Kossak
    • 1
    Email author
  • Christa Illibauer
    • 1
  • Verena Geist
    • 1
  • Christine Natschläger
    • 1
  • Thomas Ziebermayr
    • 1
  • Bernhard Freudenthaler
    • 1
  • Theodorich Kopetzky
    • 1
  • Klaus-Dieter Schewe
    • 1
  1. 1.Software Competence Center Hagenberg GmbHHagenberg im MühlkreisAustria

Personalised recommendations