State-Oriented Business Process Modeling : Principles, Theory and Practice
In the last 50 years, a considerable amount of research workhas been completed in the mathematical system theory and theoryof control. Implementation of the results from this researchinto practice has drastically decreased the production costs.Most production processes are highly automated, and the use ofrobots in industry is growing. As far as office, or businessprocesses are concerned, the situation is quite different.Though the office workers and sales personnel have obtainedmuch help from the modern computers, the office and salesprocesses are far behind the production processes on the levelof automation. The computers are used in the office mainly tohelp in performing various activities, e.g., to write a letter,to print an invoice, to complete a transaction, etc. Thecontrol of the business processes in the office remains, to alarge extent, manual. There is a lot to gain if the controlover business processes could be automated, at leastpartially.The material presented in this thesis is aimed to supportthe following hypothesis: "The ideas worked out in the Mathematical system theory formodeling and controlling physical processes can be successfullyused for modeling and controlling business processes." Oneof the main ideas of mathematical system theory is to considera process as a set of valid trajectories in a state space, andthis idea is the keystone for the thesis. The thesis startswith reformulating the state-oriented approach for the domainof business processes to show what kind of sate space can beused in this domain. First, the approach is introducedinformally by means of an example. Next, a possibleformalization adjusted to the properties of business processesis discussed. Then, experimental evidences that the methodsuggested in the thesis can be used in practice are presented.The suggested method is also compared with other methods ofbusiness process modeling to find out the areas where it hasadvantages over the other methods. In the conclusion, theresults are summarized, and plansfor the future are drawn.Most of the material included in the thesis has beenpublished and presented at international conferences. Thecontribution of this thesis consists in organizing the materialin support of the main hypothesis.
School:Kungliga Tekniska högskolan
Source Type:Doctoral Dissertation
Keywords:business process; dynamical system; formal semantics; persistent action; law-based programming; business analysis; business modeling; object-oriented modeling; conceptual modeling; workflow
Date of Publication:01/01/2002