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Wil van der Aalst

It is the Process and the Data Stupid!

If you are interested in process mining, Business Process Management (BPM), data science, workflow management, business process intelligence, Petri nets, business process simulation, concurrency theory, process modeling, or anything else related to processes and data, then my website may be useful for you. Please check out my publications on these topics and use our software tools (ProM, CPN Tools, YAWL, RapidProM, Declare, etc.) to analyze, model, and enact processes.

Data science is the profession of the future, because organizations that are unable to use (big) data in a smart way will not survive. However, it is not sufficient to focus on data storage and data analysis. The data scientist also needs to relate data to process analysis. Process mining bridges the gap between traditional model-based process analysis (e.g., simulation and other business process management techniques) and data-centric analysis techniques such as machine learning and data mining. Process mining seeks the confrontation between event data (i.e., observed behavior) and process models (hand-made or discovered automatically). This technology has become available only recently, but it can be applied to any type of operational processes (organizations and systems). Example applications include: analyzing treatment processes in hospitals, improving customer service processes in a multinational, understanding the browsing behavior of customers using a booking site, analyzing failures of a baggage handling system, and improving the user interface of an X-ray machine. All of these applications have in common that dynamic behavior needs to be related to process models. Hence, it is no longer acceptable to just look at processes and data in isolation. This website points to work that is essential to bridge the gap between process-centric approaches (BPM, Petri nets, BPMN, concurrency theory, etc.) and data-centric approaches (data mining, BI, machine learning, knowledge discovery, etc.).

About Wil van der Aalst

Prof.dr.ir. Wil van der Aalst is a full professor of Information Systems at the Technische Universiteit Eindhoven (TU/e). He is currently a visiting researcher at Fondazione Bruno Kessler (FBK) in Trento. Since 2003 he has a part-time appointment at Queensland University of Technology (QUT). He was also the Academic Supervisor of the International Laboratory of Process-Aware Information Systems of the National Research University, Higher School of Economics in Moscow. At TU/e he is also the scientific director of the Data Science Center Eindhoven (DSC/e).

His personal research interests include workflow management, process mining, Petri nets, business process management, process modeling, and process analysis. Wil van der Aalst has published 200 journal papers, 20 books (as author or editor), 450 refereed conference/workshop publications, and 65 book chapters.

Many of his papers are highly cited (he one of the most cited computer scientists in the world -over 75.000 citations- and has an H-index of more than 130 according to Google Scholar) and his ideas have influenced researchers, software developers, and standardization committees working on process support. He has been a co-chair of many conferences including the Business Process Management conference, the International Conference on Cooperative Information Systems, the International conference on the Application and Theory of Petri Nets, and the IEEE International Conference on Services Computing. He is also editor/member of the editorial board of several journals, including Computing, Distributed and Parallel Databases, Business & Information Systems Engineering, Software and Systems Modeling, the International Journal of Business Process Integration and Management, Computer Supported Cooperative Work, the International Journal on Software and Systems Modeling, the International Journal on Enterprise Modelling and Information Systems Architectures, Computers in Industry, IEEE Transactions on Services Computing, Lecture Notes in Business Information Processing, and Transactions on Petri Nets and Other Models of Concurrency.

In 2012, he received the degree of doctor honoris causa from Hasselt University. In 2013, he was appointed as Distinguished University Professor of TU/e and was awarded an honorary guest professorship at Tsinghua University. In 2015, he was appointed as honorary professor at the National Research University, Higher School of Economics in Moscow. He is also a member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (Koninklijke Nederlandse Akademie van Wetenschappen), Royal Holland Society of Sciences and Humanities (Koninklijke Hollandsche Maatschappij der Wetenschappen) and the Academy of Europe (Academia Europaea).