FIBO in SHACL: The Next Step in Data Validation and Interoperability
  Irene Polikoff   Irene Polikoff


Wednesday, April 25, 2018
12:00 PM - 01:00 PM

Level:  Intermediate

FIBO standardizes the language of financial contracts and promotes unambiguous shared meaning among all participants in the financial industry. The “golden source” of FIBO’s unambiguous semantics is currently FIBO OWL, with automated translations into SKOS and UML. However, RDFS and OWL semantics use something called "open world assumption” (OWA). Simply put, OWA means that, for example, while a contract may be described in FIBO as an agreement between at least two parties, data about a contract with only one party would not be considered invalid. OWA strongly aligns with the inherently open-ended nature of the web. As a result, OWA prevents us from identifying data errors. This limitation (as well as certain other fundamental design principles of OWL) limits the potential of FIBO OWL for data validation and for ensuring data consistency and interoperability. 

The new modeling language from W3C called SHACL (Shapes and Constraints Language), unlike RDFS and OWL, uses “closed world assumption.” This means that under SHACL’s semantics, a contract with only one known party will be identified as incomplete. SHACL also goes beyond OWL by implementing support for business rules with practically unlimited expressivity that, in many cases, is needed by FIBO. In fact, FIBO requirements were used as key inputs to SHACL design. Automated translation of FIBO OWL to SHACL is possible and has been implemented.

In this talk, we will:

  • Demonstrate FIBO in SHACL
  • Show how FIBO SHACL can be used for data validation
  • Show how SHACL can be used to auto-connect data sources to shared financial concepts
  • Discuss how SHACL Rules could be used to enrich FIBO with additional machine processable semantics

Irene Polikoff, the CEO and co-founder of TopQuadrant, was a co-chair of the W3C SHACL Working Group and is now a co-chair of the W3C SHACL Community Group. She has more than two decades of experience in software development, management, consulting, and strategic planning. Since co-founding TopQuadrant in 2001, Irene has been involved in more than a dozen projects in government and commercial sectors. She has written strategy papers, trained customers on the use of the Semantic Web standards, developed ontology models, designed solution architectures, and defined deployment processes and guidance. Before co-founding TopQuadrant, Irene was a Principal in the national Knowledge, Content Management, and Portals Practice at IBM Global Services. Prior to that, she was a Senior Development Manager and a Project Executive for IBM Worldwide Consultant's tools and methods. Irene has a master's degree in Operations Research from Columbia University.