Academic Positions

  • Present 2014

    Lecturer

    University of Quebec at Montreal,
    Department of Computer Sciences

  • 2014 2011

    Teaching Assistant

    University of Quebec at Montreal,
    Department of Computer Sciences

Education

  • Ph.D. 2010-2015 (expected)

    Ph.D. in Computer Sciences

    University of Quebec at Montreal, Canada

  • Masters2003

    Masters degree in Compter Sciences

    Université Paris-IX Dauphine, France

  • B.A.2001

    Bachelor degree in Computer Sciences

    Université Paris-IX Dauphine, France

Honors, Awards and Grants

  • May 2014
    Letter of recognition for teaching excellency
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    Letter from the computer sciences department recognizing teaching excellency. Received in May 2015.
  • Sept. 2013
    Best Workshop Paper Award
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    Received at the 17th IEEE International Enterprise Distributed Object Computing Conference (EDOC) in 2013 for our paper entitled "Methodology and Tool for Business Process Compensation Design".
    This paper was recognized as the best paper amongst all conference workshops.
  • 2010-2012
    Academic Excellency Grant FARE
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    Grant based on academic excellency awarded by the faculty of sciences of the University of Quebec at Montreal. I received this grant twice (2010 and 2011) for a total of 12.000$.
  • 2000 - 2003
    Région Île-de-France Student Mobility Grant
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    This grant is awarded to students pursuing overseas studies by the great region of Paris (France) and is based on academic excellency (20.000FrF).

Research Projects

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    Doctoral Thesis

    BOCOMA: Business Oriented COmpensation Modeling Approach

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    BPMN2REA

    Inferring Business Models from Business Process Models

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    Business Process Specialization

    Specializing business process models to meet company requirements.

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    DeclareCheck

    Raising the understandability of declarative business process models.

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A context-aware customer experience management development framework based on ontologies and computational intelligence

Hafedh Mili, Imen Benzarti, Marie-jean Meurs, Abdellatif Obaid, Gonzales-huerta, Narjes Haj-Salem and Anis Boubaker
Book Chapter Sentiment Analysis and Ontology Engineering: An Environment of Computational Intelligence, Springer, 2016 (accepted on Nov. 19th 2015)

Abstract

Customer experience management (CEM) denotes a set of practices, processes, and tools, that aim at personalizing a customer's interactions with a company around the customer's needs and desires (Weijters et al., 2007). E-business specialists have long realized the potential of ubiquitous computing to develop con- text-aware CEM applications (CA-CEM), and have been imagining CA-CEM scenarios that exploit a rich combination of sensor data, customer profile data, and historical data about the customer interactions with his environment. However, to realize this potential, e-commerce tool vendors need to figure out which soft- ware functionalities to incorporate into their products that their customers (e.g. retailers) could use/configure to build CA-CEM solutions. We propose to provide such functionalities in the form of an application framework within which CA-CEM functionalities can be specified, designed, and implemented. Our framework relies on, 1) a cognitive modeling of the purchasing process, identifying the potential touch- points between the seller and the buyer, and the relevant influence factors, 2) an ontology to represent rele- vant information about consumer categories, property types, products, and promotional material, 3) computational intelligence techniques to compute consumer- or category-specific property values, and 4) approximate reasoning algorithms to implement some of the CEM functionalities. In this paper, we present the principles underlying our framework and outline steps for using the framework for particular purchase scenarios. We conclude by discussing directions for future research.

Towards Automating Business Process Compensation Scoping Logic

Anis Boubaker, Hafedh Mili, Abderrahmane Leshob, Yasmine Charif
Conference Paper MCETECH Conference on e-technologies, 6th International | 2015 | DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-17957-5_2

Abstract

Business process compensation is an error recovery strategy aiming at semantically reversing the effects of an interrupted business process execution and restoring it to a valid state. Studies have shown that modeling error handling in general, and compensation in particular, represents the bulk of process design efforts. To that end, we proposed in a previous work an approach to model semi-automatically compensation processes based on a business analysis within the REA framework, restoring it to its initial state. However, we argue that it is neither practical nor desirable to cancel the whole process in some situations. Instead, the process should be reversed to an intermediate state from which it could resume its execution. This work aims at solving this compensation scoping problem by inferring the possible "rollback points". Our approach relies on a resource flow analysis within the context of an OCL-based behavioral specification of business process activities. In this paper, we present our slicing algorithm and lay our ground ideas on how we could identify possible candidates as process’ rollback activities.

Value-Chain Discovery from Business Process Models

Anis Boubaker, Dhouha Cherif, Abderrahmane Leshob and Hafedh Mili
Conference Paper The Practice of Enterprise Modeling(PoEM) | 2014

Abstract

Companies model their business processes either for documentation, analysis, re-engineering or automation purposes; usually using normalized business process modeling languages such as EPC or BPMN. Although these models explain how the processes should be per- formed and by whom,they abstract away their business rationale ( i.e. what is offered and why). Business modeling aims to answer the latter and different frameworks have been proposed to express the process in terms of value-chains. Ensuring alignment between both of these views manually is error prone and labor intensive. In this paper, we present a novel approach to derive a value-chain - expressed in REA - from a business process model expressed in BPMN. At the heart of our approach and our main contribution lies a set of eight general business patterns we have defined and classified as structural and behavioral patterns.

How important are paper copies of questionnaires? Testing invitations modes when studying social inequalities in smoking among young adults.

Thierry Gagné, Rowena Agouri, Michael Cantinotti, Anis Boubaker and Katherine L Frohlich
Journal Paper International journal of public health | 2014 |DOI: 10.1007/s00038-013-0469-y

Abstract

In this paper, we report results from a study in which we test whether adding a paper version of a questionnaire to a mailed invitation (a Mixed-mode invitation) will leads to a sample with different modes of response (i.e. telephone, mail or web), rates of response and socio-demographic characteristics when compared with a Web-only mailed invitation. This study was undertaken within the purview of a larger study entitled the Interdisciplinary Study of Inequalities in Smoking (ISIS), whose goal is to better understand the effects of neighbourhood and individual characteristics in the inequitable socio-economic distribution of smoking across Montreal neighbourhoods.

A Pattern Based Approach for Automatic Business Process Specialization

Abderrahmane Leshob, Hafedh Mili and Anis Boubaker
Conference PaperIEEE 38th Annual Computer Software and Applications Conference | 2014

Abstract

Organizations build information systems to support their business processes. Some of these business processes are industry or organization-specific, but most are common to many industries and are used as is, modulo a few modifications. Our work tries to capitalize on these similarities to develop a methodology and tools that help business analysts generate organization-specific process models from a catalog of generic business processes. We developed a framework for representing and classifying business processes that supports process variability management by, 1) navigating a repository of generic processes, and 2) automatically generating new process variants around key process variation points. We use business patterns from the Resource Event Agent ontology to identify variation points, and to codify the model transformations inherent in the generation of the process variants. We developed a prototype, showing the computational feasibility of the approach, and validated the relevance of the variation points, and the correctness of corresponding transformations in the context of ERP key processes, showing the conceptual soundness of the approach.

REA-based Business Process Adaptation

Abderrahmane Leshob, Hafedh Mili and Anis Boubaker
Conference Paper 11th IEEE International Conference on e-Business Engineering | 2014

Abstract

Business process modeling is an important activity for both organizational design and for the planning and analysis of information systems that support an organization’s business processes. Our goal is to help business analysts produce detailed models of the business processes that best reflect the needs of their organizations. To this end, we propose to, a) leverage the best practices in terms of a catalog of generic business processes, and b) provide analysts with tools to customize those processes by generating new process variants around automatically identified process variants. We use business patterns from the Resource Event Agent ontology to identify variation points, and to codify the model transformations inherent in the generation of the process variants. We developed a prototype, showing the computational feasibility of the approach, and validated the relevance of the variation points, and the correctness of corresponding transformations in the context of ERP key processes, showing the conceptual soundness of the approach.

Towards a Framework for Modeling Business Compensation Processes

Anis Boubaker, Hafedh Mili, Yasmine Charif and Abderrahmane Leshob
Conference Paper 14th Conference on Business Process Modeling, Development, and Support | 2013 | DOI: 10.1007/978-3-642-38484-4_11

Abstract

A typical e-business transaction takes hours or days to complete, involves a number of partners, and comprises many failure points. With short-lived transactions, database systems ensure atomicity by either committing all of the elements of the transaction, or by canceling all of them in case of a failure. With typical e-business transactions, strict atomicity is not practical, and we need a way of reversing the effects of those activities that cannot be rolled back: that is compensation. For a given business process, identifying the various failure points, and designing the appropriate compensation processes represents the bulk of process design effort. Yet, business analysts have little or no guidance, as for a given failure point, there appears to be an infinite variety of ways to compensate for it.We recognize that compensation is a business issue, but we argue that it can be explained in terms of a handful of parameters within the context of REA ontology, including things such as the type of activity, the type of resource, and organizational policies. We propose a three-step process compensation design approach that 1) starts by abstracting a business process to focus on those activities that create/modify value, 2) compensates for those activities, individually, based on values of the compensation parameters, and 3) composes those compensations using a Saga-like approach. In this paper, we present our approach, and discuss issues for future research.

Methodology and Tool for Business Process Compensation Design

Anis Boubaker, Hafedh Mili, Yasmine Charif, Abderrahmane Leshob
Workshop Paper EDOC Workshops (MRI-BP) | 2013 | DOI: 10.1109/EDOCW.2013.23

Abstract

A typical e-business transaction takes hours or days to complete, involves a number of partners, and comprises many failure points. With short-lived transactions, database systems ensure atomicity by either committing all of the elements of the transaction, or by canceling all of them in case of a failure. With typical e-business transactions, strict atomicity is not practical, and we need a way of reversing the effects of those activities that cannot be rolled back: that is compensation. For a given business process, identifying the various failure points, and designing the appropriate compensation processes represents the bulk of process design effort[8]. Yet, business analysts have little or no guidance. For a given failure point, there appears to be an infinite variety of ways to compensate for it. We recognize that compensation is a business issue, but we argue that it can be explained in terms of a handful of parameters within the context of the REA ontology, including things such as the type of activity, the type of resource, and organizational policies. We propose a three-step compensation design approach that 1) starts by abstracting a business process to focus on those activities that create/modify value, 2) compensates for those activities, individually, based on values of the compensation parameters, and 3) composes those compensations using a Saga-like approach. In this paper, we present our approach along with an implementation algorithm and propose a business ontology for compensation design.

A Value-Oriented Approach to Business Process Compensation Design

Anis Boubaker, Hafedh Mili, Abderrahmane Leshob and Yasmine Charif
Conference Paper 2nd IEEE International Conference on Information Technology and e-Services| 2012 | DOI: 10.1109/ICITeS.2012.6216671

Abstract

Service oriented paradigm offers a way to leverage business agility and reactivity by shortening time-to-market and increasing reusability. However, we argue that in order to offer robust software the business process designer has to account for numerous error paths with little or no guidance. Many studies have shown that this activity represents the bulk of the design process. In this paper, we propose an approach at assisting the process designer in assessing the compensatory activities based on business objectives that we model through a value chain.

Method and system for geothermal design, analysis and installation certification

Denis Tanguay, Anis Boubaker and Benjamin Hénault
Patent Application 2012 | Publication number: WO2012/061929

E-Tourism Portal : A Case Study in Ontology-Driven Development

Hafedh Mili, Petko Valtchev, Yasmine Charif, Laszlo Szathmary, Anis Boubaker, Louis Martin
Conference Papers 5th International Conference on eTechnologies, MCETECH | 2011

Abstract

Software development is a fairly complex activity, that is both labour-intensive and knowledge-rich, and systematically delivering high-quality software that addresses the users’ needs, on-time, and within budget, remains an elusive goal. This is even more true for internet applications presents additional challenges, including, 1) a predominance of the highly volatile interaction logic, and 2) stronger time-to-market pressures. Model-driven development purports to alleviate the problem by slicing the development process into a sequence of semantics-preserving transformations that start with a computation-independent model, through to an architecture-neutral platform independent model (PIM), all the way to platform-specific model or code at the other end. That is the idea(l). In general, however, the semantic gap between the CIM and PIM is such that the transition between them is hard to formalize. In this paper, we present a case study where we used an ontology to drive the development of an e-tourism portal. Our project showed that it is possible to drive the development of an internet application from a semantic description of the business entities, and illustrated the effectiveness of this approach during maintenance. It also highlighted the kinds of trade-offs we needed tomake to reconcile somewhat lofty design principles with the imperative of pro- ducing a product with reasonable quality.

Currently Teaching

  • Present 2015

    Lecturer: Java Programming for Management Programs (INF1256)

    University of Quebec at Montreal (UQÀM)
    This course is an introductory course in software programming. Students were introduced to basic structural programming aspects (variables, operators, functions) and object oriented programming. The main objectives of this course were to introduce

Teaching History

  • 2015 2014

    Lecturer: Software Engineering - Design (INF5153)

    University of Quebec at Montreal (UQÀM)
    This course introduced the students to the software design task as an important step in the software engineering lifecycle. At the end of this lecture, students recognized the benefits of a well designed software and were able to model a software problem at different abstraction levels using industry best practices (GoF patterns, architectural styles, etc.).

  • 2014 2012

    Teaching Assistant: Database Design (INF5180)

    University of Quebec at Montreal (UQÀM)
    In this course, students were taught main database design methodologies (semantic modeling, integrity constraints, normalisation and schema modeling) and transaction optimisations (transaction analysis and request evaluation methods). As a teachning assistant, I was in charge of a weekly two hours laboratory session. My main responsibilities were preparing laboratory material in accordance with the teachning objectives, conducting laboratory sessions, helping students working on their session assignment and grading assignments.

  • 2014

    Teaching Assistant: Web Programming (INF2005)

    University of Quebec at Montreal (UQÀM)
    This course focused on the basics of client-side web programming. Students were introduced to main standards and languages related to web programming (XHTML, CSS3, Javascript) as well as current frameworks (jQuery, jquery-ui, boostrap). As a teachning assistant, I was in charge of a weekly two hours laboratory session. My main responsibilities were preparing laboratory material, conducting laboratory sessions, helping students working on their session assignment and grading assignments.

  • 2014 2012

    Teaching Assistant: Software Engineering - Design (INF5153)

    University of Quebec at Montreal (UQÀM)
    This course introduced the students to the software design task as an important step in the software engineering lifecycle. At the end of this lecture, students recognized the benefits of a well designed software and were able to model a software problem at different abstraction levels using industry best practices (GoF patterns, architectural styles, etc.). As a teachning assistant, I was in charge of preparing laboratory material, conducting laboratory sessions, helping students working on their session assignment and grading assignments.

  • 2001

    Teaching Assistant: Advanced Excel

    University Paris-IX Dauphine
    This course taught management students how to use Microsoft Excel as data analysis tool focusing on advanced aspects as macro programming, cross-document references and importing external data anylisis libraries. As a teaching assitant, I was in charge of providing support to the students during practical problem solving sessions.

At My Lab

During relular business hours (and more :-) I am usually working at the LATECE laboratory located in the science campus of the university of Qubec at Montreal.

LATECE Laboratory
Département d’informatique
Université du Québec à Montréal
201 Président Kennedy Montréal (Québec) H2X 3Y7

Mailing Address

You can find me at my Work located at Stanford University Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.

I am at my office every day from 7:00 until 10:00 am, but you may consider a call to fix an appointment.

At My Office

I share a lecturer office with other department lecturers. I use this office mainly to meet students during office hours. As I am not usually at this office, please consider sending me an email to fix an appointment.