Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


School of Computer Science and Software Engineering


This dissertation proposes a methodology to manage business process design in a dynamic organizational context primarily by using i* modeling framework and Business Process Modeling Notation (BPMN). Agent-Oriented Conceptual Modeling (AOCM) notations such as the i* framework have gained considerable currency in the recent past. Such notations model organisational context and offer high-level social/anthropomorphic abstractions (such as goals, tasks, softgoals and dependencies) as modeling constructs. It has been argued that such notations help answer questions such as what goals exist, how key actors depend on each other and what alternatives must be considered. The technical focus of process modeling notations such as BPMN is especially suited for applications in the description, execution and simulation of business processes but is lacking in support for process redesign and improvement. These notations effectively provide a view of the responsibilities and required communications between classes of process participants, but do not provide a view of other social and inten- tional characteristics including the goals of participants and their inter-dependencies. We argue this gap can be minimised by using and correlating organisational models and process models in a complimentary fashion.

Business processes represent the operational capabilities of an organisation. In order to ensure process continuity, the effective management of risk becomes an area of key concern. We argue there is a need for supporting risk identification with the use of higher-level organisational models and business process models.

In this research we have conducted a detailed analysis of the concept that flexibility and combination of notations are required to facilitate the maintenance of the models. We have developed a methodology to support combined use of notations (i* and BPMN) for modeling business processes with a view to facilitate and support change at organisational and process models. We have also presented a methodology to integrate risks in process models through a set of intuitive metrics by extracting measures of actor criticality, and vulnerability from organisational models. This research has been vali- dated through a detailed case study involving a major government agency and through an experiment conducted among participants from industry and academia.



Unless otherwise indicated, the views expressed in this thesis are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the University of Wollongong.