Standardization of Product Ontologies in B2B Relationships - On the Role of ISO 13584
Product ontologies in B2B relationships establish a shared and common understanding of a product domain by building hierarchies of product classes enriched by attributes. This is especially true for standardized product ontologies which enable efficient catalog navigation and product search as well as product comparison across suppliers. While much research work has been carried out on the classification process, business practice has to cope with heterogeneities regarding data exchange, formal specifications and semantic richness that hinder the proliferation of product ontologies. One solution may be the standard ISO 13584, routed in product data management. This paper aims at analyzing the potential of ISO 13584 as a reference model for product ontologies. The paper will assess its capabilities by deriving requirements. This will be complemented by an empirical analysis of a selected product ontology in order to determine both the current relevance of ISO 13584 and needs for enhancements or modifications.
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