BPM Use Cases: Discussion and Special Issue of BISE

This page aims to support the discussion on the BPM Use Cases and serves as a follow-up of the panel discussion on "the Future of BPM Research/Publications" in August at BPM 2013 in Beijing. The goal of this page is twofold:

An initial set of 20 BPM Use Cases was presented at BPM 2012 (http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-32885-5_1) and was further detailed in Business Process Management: A Comprehensive Survey, ISRN Software Engineering, 2013 (http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/507984).

The frequency of each BPM Use Case was investigated by analyzing 10 years of BPM papers (blue bars in graphic). Moreover, authors of BPM 2013 papers could indicate which Uses Cases they aim to support (red bars in graphic) and which Uses Cases were missing in the initial set. See the panel slides for the Top 6 BPM Use Cases (DesM, ExtM, VerM, DiscM, ImpM, and RefM) of BPM 2013.

The panel slides provide more background: http://bpm2013.tsinghua.edu.cn/wp-content/uploads/2013/09/Panel-on-Future-of-BPM-email.pdf.

Question 1: As discussed during the panel the current set of 20 Use Cases is far from complete and serves only as a starting point. Please suggest new use cases using the template Use-Case-Template.docx or Use-Case-Template.pdf and send it to w.m.p.v.d.aalst@tue.nl.

Question 2: It seems that some of the BPM Use Cases are at different levels of granularity. Please indicate which Use Cases need to be refined and which Use Cases can be grouped into a higher-level Use Case. Use the template Use-Case-Template.docx or Use-Case-Template.pdf (see "Relation to other uses cases" field).

Question 3: The BPM Use Cases consider the functional dimension (what BPM activity to support) as leading. However, there are orthogonal ways of classifying BPM research. For example, a Use Case may refer to the control-flow, data, or resource/organization perspective. If you have suggestions for such orthogonal dimensions, send them to w.m.p.v.d.aalst@tue.nl.


Towards a Special issue of the BISE (Business & Information Systems Engineering) journal

Next to structuring and reflecting on the BPM discipline, the goal is to create a special issue of the BISE (Business & Information Systems Engineering) journal by Springer related to the BPM Use cases. This special issue is expected to have a significant impact on the development of the BPM field, so you contribution is important. The timeframe is as follows:

The call for papers will follow later and at this stage the exact scope and format are open to discussion. At this point, three possible contributions are envisioned:

  1. Papers suggesting extensions or further analysis of the current set of BPM Use Cases.
  2. Papers providing a survey of a selected set of BPM Use Cases. Such survey paper could review the research done in a selected BPM subdiscipline.
  3. Papers suggesting an alternative structuring of the BPM field (i.e., not based on Use Cases).


Question 4: If you are interested in contributing to this special issue of BISE or you have ideas on how to structure the call for papers and discussion, send an e-mail to w.m.p.v.d.aalst@tue.nl. The special issue should be "very special" and provide an original, valuable and interesting surveys of the state-of-the-art in BPM research. Therefore, please contribute to this discussion and indicate how you would like to be involved (author, reviewer, topic champion, track chair,  etc.).


Other topics discussed during the panel discussion on "the Future of BPM Research/Publications" at BPM 2013 in Beijing

The panel consisted of Wil van der Aalst (moderator), Barbara Weber (BPM PC chair 2013), Pnina Soffer, Hagen Völzer (BPM PC chairs 2014). The other PC chairs of BPM 2013&2014, i.e., Florian Daniel, Jianmin Wang, and Shazia Sadiq contributed to the preparation of the panel discussion that took place on August 29th, 2013 in Beijing. The panel slides can be found here: http://bpm2013.tsinghua.edu.cn/wp-content/uploads/2013/09/Panel-on-Future-of-BPM-email.pdf.

For the first time, BPM authors were asked to fill out a questionnaire and most authors did so. There were questions related to the use and availability of software tools and data sets, the BPM use cases addressed in the submitted paper, and the type of paper (e.g., student paper or not). Besides the BPM Use Cases the following topics were discussed by the panel:

Almost all BPM researchers acknowledge the importance of sharing data sets and software. Moreover, reviewer already implicitly take this into account in their reviews. However, it seems to be too early to make this explicit during the reviewing process. In the end only 25% of the paper submissions actually shared resources (data and/or software) and some refused to fill out the questionnaire (even though it was not shared with the reviewers and anonymized). There is of course room for BPM papers that do not describe software or use publically available data. Papers can be of a purely theoretical nature or authors of industry papers may not be able to  share the data or software. Therefore, the panel concluded that it is better to positively reward authors of papers that share data sets and software after acceptance. Already now people can upload tool information via the BPM Tool Database initiative (see http://bpm-conference.org/bpt-resource-management/). Additional rewards need to be considered. Of course experience shows that sharing data and software already significantly increases the impact of an author's research.

The panel also noted that there is an imbalance in the submissions and accepted papers. Some areas of BPM seem to be further developed and perhaps even overrepresented at the conference. The question is how to attract additional submissions from underrepresented or still emerging BPM subdisciplines. The Topic Areas at BPM 2014 (http://bpm2014.haifa.ac.il/) and the BPM Use Case discussion are intended to stimulate more of such contributions.


Looking forward to your suggestions and contributions!!!