OMG to create new specification for pedigree and provenance within BPM family

by Joseph K. Clark

The Object Management Group (OMG) has requested proposals for the pedigree and provenance model and notation (PPMN) specification. The PPMN specification will be part of the BPM family of modeling and notation standards and will support tracking the pedigree and provenance of physical and abstract things.

OMG’s BPM+ provides a set of standards for defining the P&P of models and elements. It also includes Business Process Model and Notation, Case Management Model and Notation, and Decision Model and Notation.

“We identified a need for a P&P specification nearly five years ago and have been discussing requirements for a standard for several years. There’s a great opportunity for P&P in healthcare. Still, its application and potential use cross-industries ranging from farm to table, manufacturing, data mining to contact tracing in healthcare,” said Robert Lario, University of Utah & Veterans Administration, and co-chair of the OMG Healthcare Task Force and BPM+ Methodology Initiative. “There is also an opportunity for P&P to become an open standard for expressing ledger entries in a Blockchain.”


According to the organization, the PPMN specification will help provide the ownership history of an entity that can help users decide whether or not to purchase that entity from a seller and legitimate transfer of ownership. In addition, the custodial account will ensure the safety and the handling of the entity. “For example, the temperature, humidity, and other factors of food storage can affect whether and how long the items may be safely consumed. In the healthcare industry, P&P ensures that the calibration of equipment and staff training is included with patient data. In military application, P&P can be applied to how intelligence was gathered and how mutual allies can share information. PPMN will standardize how disparate organizations and industries express their P&P, opening the door for pooling, deep analysis, and learning,” OMG wrote in its announcement.

Additionally, the specification will provide a standard and interoperable solution for exchanging and displaying lineage, ownership, and custody of the information.

“In many industries, organizations, individuals, and other interested parties depending on the ability to assess the trustworthiness or authenticity of the things or entities they use and/or produce. This requires an understanding of the full history of that entity, including its lineage, or how it came to be, its ownership history, and its custodial industry,” said John Butler, CEO of Auxilium Technology Group and co-chair of the OMG Pedigree and Provenance Working Group. More information is available here.

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