Research Perspective

Research Interests

  • Business process modelling and automation
  • Workflow management system
  • Service-oriented computing
  • Modelling and analysis using formal methods

Research Projects

Rapidly Locating Items in Distribution Networks with Process-Driven Nodes

    This is an ARC Discovery Grant led by Prof Colin Fidge and Prof Arthur ter Hofstede at QUT and Prof Marlon Dumas at University of Tartu in Estonia. This project aims to develop novel techniques for locating items in large-scale distribution networks driven by complex logistic processes. The outcomes of the project will make it easier to rapidly and accurately pinpoint product locations outside controlled facilities, thus contributing to both cost savings and public safety. I recently joined and am currently working on this project.

BPM for the Creative Industries

    This project is part of the ARC Center of Excellence for Creative Industries and Innovations and is led by Prof Arthur ter Hofstede and Prof Michael Rosemann at QUT. In this project, I undertook research in investigating how the application of BPM technology can deliver benefits to the field of screen business. In particular, I was in charge of the development of a workflow system-based prototype for automating film productions. The system known as YAWL4Film was successfully deployed in two pilot projects at the Australian Film, Television, and Radio School (AFTRS) during October 2007. It then inspired the development of Genie Workbench which is a suite of film and television production software that assist filmmakers in many production tasks.

Expressiveness Comparison and Interchange Facilitation between Business Process Execution Languages

    This refers to an ARC Discovery Grant (BABEL as the short name) led by Prof Arthur ter Hofstede and A/Prof Marlon Dumas at QUT and Prof Wil van der Aalst at Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e) in The Netherlands. In this project, I undertook research in the areas of workflow foundations, inter-workflow mappings and business process modelling and execution. In particular, I defined mappings from Business Process Execution Language for Web Services (WS-BPEL) and Business Process Modeling Notation (BPMN) to Petri nets for detecting semantic errors in BPMN and BPEL process models, and a mapping from BPMN to WS-BPEL so that a process modelled in BPMN can be automated using an existing BPEL engine such as Oracle BPEL Process Manager. These are showcased in BPMN and BPEL transformation tools, a collection of open-source tools to transform process models between BPMN and BPEL and to detect semantic errors in BPMN and BPEL process models by transforming them into Petri nets.

Development of Advanced State Space Reduction Techniques

    This was a joint project between University of South Australia, Adelaide University and University of Arhus in Denmark, and was supported by an ARC Discovery Grant. In this project, I closely worked with Prof Jonathan Billington, Dr Lars Michael Kristensen, and Guy Gallasch on applying an advanced sweep-line state space reduction technique for analysis of an e-commerce protocol proposed by the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF).

Modeling and Analysis of Avionics Mission Systems

    This was a joint project between the Computer Systems Engineering Centre at UniSA and the Australian Defence Science and Technology Organisation (DSTO). In this project, I closely worked with Prof Jonathan Billington and Dr Jörn Freiheit on modelling and analysis of Ada structure graphs and process structure charts using Coloured Petri nets.

The YAWL Initiative

    I am a member of The YAWL Initiative headed by Prof Arthur ter Hofstede and Prof Wil van der Aalst. The YAWL Initiative reflects a long-running collaborative research effort between Eindhoven University of Technology and QUT’s BPM Group. I mainly work on real applications and case studies of YAWL.

PhD Research

    My PhD research was carried out on formal specification and verification of the Internet Open Trading Protocol (IOTP). IOTP aims to provide reliable common transaction services to multiple trading parties over the Internet. It was developed by IETF as the Request for Comments (RFC) 2801. The RFC contains an informal narrative description of IOTP. During my PhD research, I applied a protocol engineering methodology using Coloured Petri nets to develop models of IOTP at different levels of abstraction in order to check if the protocol works correctly as specified in the RFC.