Consistent Abstraction of Business Processes Based on Constraints

S. Mafazi, G. Grossmann, W. Mayer, M. Schrefl, M. Stumptner
Schr15a (2015)
Journal on Data Semantics (JoDS), Springer Verlag, ISSN 1861-2032, Volume 4, Number 1, March 2015, pp. 59-78, 2015.
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Abstract (English)

Exploring and understanding large business process models are important tasks in the context of business process management. In recent years, several techniques have been proposed for the abstraction of business processes. Automated abstraction techniques have been devised for verifying correctness and consistency of process models and for providing customised process views for business process analysts. Yet a goal-focused and semantic-based approach to generate purposeful abstraction of business processes is an open issue. We propose an approach for configuration of process abstractions with respect to a specific abstraction goal expressed as constraints on the correspondence relation between concrete and abstract process and process transformation operators. Our framework goes beyond simple structural aggregation and leverages domain-specific properties, taxonomies, meronymy, and flow criteria to generate a hierarchy of abstract process models. We outline the constraint-based framework, describe how rewriting-based abstraction mechanisms are embedded with consistency criteria guiding the search for abstractions, and show how notions of behavior consistency can be utilised to obtain abstractions that conform to behavioural process inheritance criteria.