Semantic Discovery and Selection of Data Connectors in International Data Spaces

Danniar Firdausy, Patrício De Alencar Silva, Marten J. van Sinderen, Maria Eugenia Iacob

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Data sovereignty is the right that individuals and organizations own to control the access to and the disclosure of their private and sensitive data. In Europe, the International Data Spaces Association (IDSA) aims to promote this right by proposing technical and organizational guidelines to help companies build trusted data exchange ecosystems. The IDSA suggests the IDS Connectors as software components necessary to enforce data sovereignty on the technical level. Among many possible functionalities, an IDS Connector could enable (1) data exchange between data owners' and data user's Enterprise systems in a standardized communication protocol; (2) data access policy enforcement; and (3) internal data transformation operations, e.g., integration, mapping, or merging. However, software and service providers may start soon offering IDS Connectors with different configurations through multiple platforms on the Web, making the practical adoption of the IDS architectural guidelines more difficult, especially for small and medium enterprises. We propose developing an IDS Connector Store to discover and select IDS Connectors in IDS ecosystems to cope with this issue. The store will operate as a metadata repository to describe the connectors according to contextual information, e.g., the business domain, pricing model, and data access policies enforced. This paper reports on the current state of this research endeavor by providing a threefold contribution. First, it elaborates on research questions, methods, and goals to address the design problem on hand. Second, it presents an ontology requirements specification document highlighting competency questions related to discovering and selecting IDS Connectors in an IDS ecosystem. Last, it provides the first conceptual draft of an ontology for IDS Connectors described in OntoUML posed for discussion among the conceptual modeling community and to guide meaningful and further specification in Web Ontology Language (OWL).
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2022
EventInteroperability for Enterprise Systems and Applications, I-ESA 2022 - Valencia, Spain
Duration: 23 Mar 202225 Mar 2022


ConferenceInteroperability for Enterprise Systems and Applications, I-ESA 2022
Abbreviated titleI-ESA 2022


  • International data spaces
  • IDS
  • Ontology
  • Semantic Web
  • Discoverability
  • Data Sovereignty


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