›› 2015, Vol. 30 ›› Issue (1): 214-224.doi: 10.1007/s11390-015-1514-5

Special Issue: Data Management and Data Mining

• Data Management and Data Mining • Previous Articles    

A Clustering Algorithm for Planning the Integration Process of a Large Number of Conceptual Schemas

Carlo Batini1, Paola Bonizzoni1, Marco Comerio1, Riccardo Dondi2, Yuri Pirola1, Francesco Salandra1   

  1. 1 Department of Informatics, Systems and Communication, University of Milano-Bicocca, Milan 20126, Italy;
    2 Department of Human and Social Sciences, University of Bergamo, Bergamo 24129, Italy
  • Received:2013-12-19 Revised:2014-07-29 Online:2015-01-05 Published:2015-01-05
  • About author:Carlo Batini is a full professor of computer engineering at the Department of Informatics, Systems and Communication (DISCo) of the University of Milano-Bicocca. He received his M.S. degree in engineering from the University of Roma. From 1983 to 1986, he was an associate professor, and from 1986 to 2001, he was a full professor at University of Roma La Sapienza. Since 2001 he has been a full professor at University of Milano-Bicocca. From 1993 to August 2003, he was on leave from university, being a member of the executive board of the Italian Authority for Information Technology in Public Administration, where he leaded significant projects in Italian Central Public Administration related to e-Government initiatives. His research interests include cooperative information systems, information systems, database modeling and design, data and information quality, web services design, eGovernment planning methodologies, and services and data repositories.
  • Supported by:

    The work was partially supported by the Italian Project PON01 00861 SMART (Services and Meta-services for smART eGovernment) and by the Project (CUP E41l13000220009) SPAC3 (Smart services of the new Public Administration for the Citizen-Centricity in the Cloud) co-financed by the Lombardy region.

When tens and even hundreds of schemas are involved in the integration process, criteria are needed for choosing clusters of schemas to be integrated, so as to deal with the integration problem through an efficient iterative process. Schemas in clusters should be chosen according to cohesion and coupling criteria that are based on similarities and dissimilarities among schemas. In this paper, we propose an algorithm for a novel variant of the correlation clustering approach that addresses the problem of assisting a designer in integrating a large number of conceptual schemas. The novel variant introduces upper and lower bounds to the number of schemas in each cluster, in order to avoid too complex and too simple integration contexts respectively. We give a heuristic for solving the problem, being an NP hard combinatorial problem. An experimental activity demonstrates an appreciable increment in the effectiveness of the schema integration process when clusters are computed by means of the proposed algorithm w.r.t. the ones manually defined by an expert.

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