Sustaining interoperability of networked liquid-sensing enterprises: A complex systems perspective

Carlos Agostinho, Ricardo Jardim-Goncalves

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)


The emerging Liquid-Sensing Enterprise (LSE) concept provides manufacturing industrial networks with the required enablers to seamless interoperate and sustain its interoperability along the operational life cycle. Actually, the actual domain of enterprise information systems interoperability prospects the need for a new paradigm able to manage the network dynamics, facilitating adaptation along the lifecycle of an enterprise and the LSE network. The theory of complex systems provides a set of heuristics that can be applied to support the formalization of the LSE industrial network and its dynamics, demonstrating how they can be enabled and at the same time controlled to keep the overall level of interoperability stable. Hence, today there is technology suitable to implement such systems, capable to realize the LSE real, digital and virtual worlds. However, isolated, this technology cannot deliver the requirements for a self-sustainable LSE network. The authors propose a novel metaphor from complexity as a framework to model and implement the mechanism for sustaining interoperability in such networked environments. They identify the motivations for sustaining interoperability of networked liquid-sensing enterprises, having complex and adaptive systems as a vehicle to model and understand the relationships between enterprises and enterprise information systems in networked environments. Then, existing technology such as model-driven interoperability, agent-based or service oriented architectures, and knowledge management, is proposed to detail the conceptual solution for the sustainability of interoperability. An instantiation of the concept proposed is presented, which details the prototypal application elaborated in a real manufacturing scenario, implemented and validated during the European Project Factories of the Future IMAGINE.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)128-143
Number of pages16
JournalAnnual Reviews In Control
Publication statusPublished - 2015




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