Overall Objectives
Scientific Foundations
Application Domains
New Results
Contracts and Grants with Industry
Other Grants and Activities

Section: Overall Objectives


Context and Objectives

Actors and interaction devices are becoming more and more mobile while knowledge sources, services and their networks are becoming ubiquitous. In this context we witness the emergence of communities of interest and/or practice, very light and agile structures that can be ephemeral and virtual. To assist the life-cycle of such communities we are interested in providing tools and methodologies supporting the interactions and the memories of these focused groups. Throughout its life time, a community uses, produces, exchanges, and shares resources materializing knowledge through various types of documents (that may be structured or not, textual, multimedia, etc.). A community may also rely on some services or programs available inside the community or outside. To ensure mutual understanding between community members, the exchanges inside a community rely on a common terminology and common concepts that may evolve throughout the life of the community. These exchanges can also use various media.

The context of the emergence of such virtual communities (inside organizations, across organizations or independently of any organization) is the use of the Web not only for information sharing but also for support to cooperation, the use of new interaction channels, the evolution of Web technologies (Semantic Web, social Web, Web services, mobile Web, ubiquitous Web).

Edelweiss aims at offering models, methods and techniques for supporting ergonomic, web-based, knowledge management and collaboration in virtual communities interacting with information resources through the Web. Edelweiss will thus perform research on graph-based, ontology-based, web-based knowledge representation and inferences for interacting with or through information resources.

Research Topics

The support to such a virtual community can be studied according to several viewpoints:

Therefore, we will study thoroughly three complementary research directions, corresponding to these three viewpoints:

Our research topics can be decomposed as follows:

International and industrial relations

We collaborate or collaborated with industrialists in the following fields: aeronautics (Aerospace, Dassault-Aviation, EADS), car industry (Renault, ItalDesign), telecommunications (CSELT, T-NOVA, Telecom Valley, France Telecom), service integration (Atos Origin), semi-conductors (Philips Semi-Conductors, now NXP), manufacturing (Estanda) and earth sciences (BRGM, IFP), and in biology (IPMC, Immunosearch). We also had collaborations with researchers in accidentology (INRETS) and in the field of healthcare (Nautilus), in civil engineering sector (CSTB)and in software engineering (ILOG). We had international relations with Griffith University and CSIRO (Australia), Parma University (Italia), and T-Systems Nova (Germany).

Our work was applied in the context of the IST project CoMMA and we took part in the OntoWeb thematic network. We take part in the Knowledge Web Network of Excellence, in the Integrated Project Palette and in the STREPS projects SeaLife and SevenPro.


Logo Inria