Avainsana-arkisto: Menetelmien kehittäminen

Process Metamodelling: Conceptual Foundations and Application

Abstract: This study deals with customisation of process modelling languages in method support technology. Technology plays an important role in process improvement since its capabilities limit the choices available for an organisation. The aim is to strive for technology that enables purposeful change, while avoiding technology that forces change to no purpose. The objective of this study is to develop a theory and mechanisms for support technology that enables language change. Process metamodelling is chosen as a means by which process modelling languages can be specified and implemented in a process support environment.

The study forms part of a larger research effort on customisable method support environments. The thesis studies the conceptual basis of process metamodelling and its application in metaCASE technology. The specific objectives are 1) to develop a system architecture for language specification and a generic process engine, 2) to investigate alternatives and principles for language specification, along with the use of these in process enactment, 3) to design and implement the constructs needed for language customisation in a generic modelling system, and 4) to design and implement the mechanism needed to enact process models in a generic process enactment system.

The research methodology takes a constructive approach. It proceeds through an incremental and iterative cycle of observation, theory building, system development, and experimentation. Prototyping forces the theory builder to experiment with the consequences of the theoretical assumptions present in experimental system designs. Each iteration increases the formality of the design, gradually improving and validating the theory. The research is finally synthesised in a set of criteria for assessing customisable method support environments.

Reference: Koskinen, M. 2000. Process Metamodelling: Conceptual Foundations and Application. Jyväskylä Studies in Computing 7. University of Jyväskylä, Finland.

Not available online.

Towards Customization of Process Modelling Languages in Computer-Aided Process Engineering

Abstract: Computer-Aided Process Engineering (CAPE) technology is used for supporting methodical process engineering. PML customization for CAPE technology is an emerging area of research that focuses on the specification of process modeling languages and the use of such specifications in process modeling and process enactment. This study investigates PML customization and outlines its direction in process engineering and related technological support. We find that PML customization is almost ignored in current research on process engineering. However, there are some empirical studies that consider such customization essential in local process improvement efforts, since it allows process modeling languages be adapted and evolved according to the local conditions and requirements. Beyond mere linguistic adaptation, PML customization is almost ignored also in technological research. Instead, we find that current technologies are a major obstacle in the application of PML customization. In the future, we expect customizable PCSE and CAPE environments to emerge that give organizations more flexibility in process engineering and process improvement.

Reference: Koskinen, M. 2000. Towards Customization of Process Modelling Languages in Computer-Aided Process Engineering. MetaPHOR Research Group, Unpublished Articles, 14.9.2000. University of Jyväskylä, Finland.

Available online: 2000-Report-3.pdf

Note: The article is an adapted extract from: Koskinen, M. (2000) Process Metamodelling: Conceptual Foundations and Application, see for detailshttp://minnaweb.net/publib/2000/36.

Comparing Two Traditions: Towards an Integrated View of Method Engineering and Process Engineering

Abstract: Method Engineering and Process Engineering are overlapping and complementary approches to methodical development of information and sofware systems, yet there is little research on their relationships. In this study, we aim at specifying how the traditions are related. The traditions can help each other to reshape and better understand themselves and each other. Consequently, this study aims at a more comprehensive and balanced view and contributes to the further integration of the traditions.

Reference: Koskinen, M. 2000. Comparing Two Traditions: Towards an Integrated View of Method Engineering and Process Engineering. MetaPHOR Research Group, Unpublished Articles, 7.9.2000. University of Jyväskylä, Finland.

Available online: 2000-Report-2.pdf

Note: The article is an adapted extract from: Koskinen, M. (2000) Process Metamodelling: Conceptual Foundations and Application, see for detailshttp://minnaweb.net/publib/2000/36.

Organisational Perspective to the Variation of Process Modelling Languages

Abstract: Process modelling languages are based on different philosophical and conceptual foundations and, therefore, are suitable for different systems development contexts and situations. The need for variation can be explained by organisational and cultural issues. Process research has widely investigated the technical issues of process modelling languages but mostly forgot social ones. Therefore, we want to draw attention on their importance. In this paper we discuss organisational and cultural issues of process thinking and introduce a framework to classify process modelling languages on the basis of these social concerns.

Reference: Koskinen, M. 2000. Organisational Perspective to the Variation of Process Modelling Languages. MetaPHOR Research Group, Unpublished Articles, 31.7.2000. University of Jyväskylä, Finland.

Available online: 2000-Report-1.pdf

Note: The article is an adapted extract from: Koskinen, M. (1999) A Metamodelling Approach to Process Concept Customisation and Enactability in MetaCASEs, see for details: http://minnaweb.net/publib/1999/33.

A Metamodelling Approach to Process Concept Customisation and Enactability in MetaCASE

Koskinen, M. 1999. A Metamodelling Approach to Process Concept Customisation and Enactability in MetaCASE. Computer Science and Information Systems Reports, Technical Reports TR-20. Licentiate Thesis. Department of Computer Science and Information Systems, University of Jyväskylä.

Not available online.

Developing a Customisable Process Modelling Environment: Lessons Learnt and Future Prospects

Abstract: MetaCASE environments are design environments with customisable method support. Currently these environments are shifting from individual production support towards multi-user design environments. When adapting such an environment, the organisational context becomes important. We must focus on and improve the infrastructure (procedures and policies) and support (guidelines, help). Part of organisational support in design environments is process modelling: process models facilitate understanding and communication, process support gives guidance and helps enforcing procedures and policies. In a customisable design environment improvement is seen as a shift, a relatively gradual change that the environment should be able to support. For such evolution of technology, we stress the adaptability to local practices and problems, capability for gradual improvement, and low time and cost risk in adoption. In this paper we discuss evolution of process modelling support in metaCASE and present Customisable Process Modelling Environment (CPME), which gives process support for a metaCASE environment.

Reference: Koskinen, M. & Marttiin, P. (1998). Developing a Customisable Process Modelling Environment: Lessons Learnt and Future Prospects. In V. Gruhn (Eds.) Proceedings of the 6th European Workshop on Software Process Technology, EWSPT’98, LNCS 1487. Springer-Verlag, 13-27.

DOI: 10.1007/3-540-64956-5_2

Available online: https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/3-540-64956-5_2

Similarities and Differences of Method Engineering and Process Engineering Approaches

Abstract: A number of studies have been concerned with situational aspects of methods and process models. Various method engineering (ME) and process engineering (PE) strategies have been proposed. These two disciplines have been studied separately concentrating either quality of products by the means of ME or quality of process by the means of PE. However, their products (methods and process models) overlap, and similarities can also be found in the forms of engineering. In this paper we shortly examine ME/PE approaches by distinguishing whether the problem is technical: How to engineer a method or a process definition to be used in an automated environment? or organisational: How to engineer a better method or a process model for an organisation?

Reference: Marttiin, P. & Koskinen, M. 1998. Similarities and Differences of Method Engineering and Process Engineering Approaches. In Khosrowpour, M. (Eds.) Effective Utilization and Management of Emerging Information Technologies. Harrisburg: Idea Group Publishing, 420-424.

Available online: 1998-IRMA98.pdf

A Metamodelling Approach to Process Concept Customization and Enactability in MetaCASE

Abstract: MetaCASE environments are emerging with support for method engineering and methods’ use. In this scope, also the importance of process engineering has been recognized and the research on methodical process support has started to seek appropriate forms. One of the problems faced in process support customization is the increasing variety of process modelling techniques and methods with different philosophical and conceptual approaches. Yet none of these approaches may be claimed superior or inferior to others in general. Since metaCASE environments should be designed to support a wide range of arbitrary methods, the conceptual coverage of process modelling language (PML) supported by a metaCASE environment needs to be exceptionally wide. Thus, mechanisms for defining and modifying PMLs with different underlying orientations and conceptual foundations need to be developed in metaCASE environments.

The main objective of the thesis is to investigate the possibility to apply metamodelling principles in defining situational PMLs for automated process support in metaCASE. The research searches for general principles and alternatives in process support customization, develops concepts and tools to define customizable PMLs by metamodelling, and introduces the relevant process enaction mechanisms implemented in a metaCASE environment MetaEdit+. Finally, the tools will be used to define a variety of PMLs to evaluate the PMLs and the proposed approach. The research method is constructive and the questions are addressed through an incremental and iterative cycle of theory building, system development, and experimentation.

Reference: Koskinen, M. 1997. A Metamodelling Approach to Process Concept Customization and Enactability in MetaCASE. ICIS Doctoral Consortium. December 1997, Atlanta, USA.

Available online: 1997-ICISDC.pdf

Beyond Process Modelling Languages: A Metamodelling Approach to Customizable Concepts and Enactability in MetaCASE

Abstract: MetaCASE environments are emerging with support for method engineering and methods’ use. In this scope, also the importance of process engineering has been recognized and the research on methodical process support has started to seek appropriate forms. One of the problems faced in process support customization is the increasing variety of process modelling techniques and methods with extremely varying philosophical and conceptual approaches. Yet none of these approaches may be claimed superior of inferior to others in general. Since metaCASE environments should be designed to support a wide range of arbitrary methods, the conceptual coverage of process modelling language (PML) supported by a metaCASE environment needs to be exceptionally wide. In the thesis we claim that mechanisms for defining and modifying PMLs with different underlying orientations and conceptual foundations need to be developed in metaCASE environments.

The main objective of the thesis is to investigate the possibility to apply metamodelling principles in defining situational process modelling languages for automated process support in metaCASE. The research questions addressed are

  1. what alternatives there are for process support customization in existing process support environments and to what extend the solutions could be applied in metaCASE,
  2. what concepts and tools are needed to define customizable PMLs and how they can be implemented in MetaEdit+, and
  3. what kind of process enaction mechanisms are needed for the concepts and how they can be implemented in MetaEdit+.

The proposed approach is further evaluated through defining an example PML. The research method is therefore constructive and the questions are addressed through an incremental and iterative cycle of theory building, system development, and experimentation.

Reference: Koskinen, M. (1997). Beyond Process Modelling Languages: A Metamodelling Approach to Customizable Concepts and Enactability in MetaCASE. Proceedings of the 4th Doctoral Consortium on Advanced Information Systems Engineering, Barcelonia, Catalonia.

Available online: 1997-CAiSEDC.pdf