Applied Ontology

An Interdisciplinary Journal of Ontological Analysis and Conceptual Modeling

Impact Factor


18, 4 issues

Latest issue

18:2 online 13 August 2023

Next issue

18:3 scheduled for November 2023

Back volumes

From volume 1, 2005

ISSN print


ISSN online


Aims & Scope

In recent years, the dramatic growth of information and communication technologies has led to an increasingly interdisciplinary approach to research and development activities in these fields. To exploit the immense opportunities of widespread networks effectively, designers of modern information systems need to combine the precision of formal semantics with the needs of cognitive transparency, as they incorporate increasingly sophisticated and heterogeneous information content. The recent explosion of interest on ontologies is an important component of this trend. Researchers in disciplines such as knowledge engineering, information systems modeling, artificial intelligence, formal and computational linguistics, information retrieval, library science, and knowledge management have come to realize that a solid foundation for their research calls for serious work in ontology, understood as a general theory of the types of entities and relations that make up their respective domains of inquiry. In all these areas, attention has started to focus squarely on the content of information, rather than on just the formats and languages used to represent that content.

Applied Ontology focuses on information content in its broadest sense. As the subtitle makes clear, two broad kinds of content-based research activities are envisioned: ontological analysis and conceptual modeling. The former includes any attempt to investigate the nature and structure of a domain of interest using rigorous philosophical or logical tools; the latter concerns the cognitive and linguistic structures we use to model the world, as well as the various analysis tools and methodologies we adopt for producing useful computational models, such as information systems schemes or knowledge structures. Applied Ontology is the first journal with explicit and exclusive focus on ontological analysis and conceptual modeling under an interdisciplinary view. It aims to establish a unique niche in the realm of scientific journals by carefully avoiding unnecessary duplication with discipline-oriented journals. For this reason, authors will be encouraged to use language that will be intelligible also to those outside their specific sector of expertise, and the review process will be tailored to this end. For example, authors of theoretical contributions will be encouraged to show the relevance of their theory for applications, while authors of more technological papers will be encouraged to show the relevance of a well-founded theoretical perspective. Moreover, the journal will publish papers focusing on representation languages or algorithms only where these address relevant content issues, whether at the level of practical application or of theoretical understanding. Similarly, it will publish descriptions of tools or implemented systems only where a contribution to the practice of ontological analysis and conceptual modeling is clearly established.

Applied Ontology aims at being a major publication forum for theoretical and applied research in a variety of topics, tentatively grouped together in research areas, examples of which are indicated in the list below.

  • Foundational issues • Philosophical foundations of ontology • Basic ontological categories and relations • Ontology, epistemology, and semiotics
  • Specialized ontologies • Ontology of time, events and processes • Ontology of space and geography • Ontology of physics and physical objects • Ontology of biomedicine • Ontology of mental entities • Ontology of agents and actions • Ontology of organizations and social reality • Ontology of the information society • Ontology of business and e-commerce • Ontology of law • Ontology of history, culture and evolution
  • Ontology development and ontology-driven conceptual modeling • Methodologies for ontology development • Impact of ontological analysis on current modeling practices • Best-practice examples and case studies
  • Ontology management • Tools for ontology development, analysis and comparison • Comparison and evaluation of ontologies • Ontology management, maintenance, versioning • Methodologies for ontology merging, alignment, and integration • Semantic Web
  • Ontology and language • Ontology and natural-language semantics • Ontology and lexical resources • Ontology and terminology • Ontology learning techniques and their evaluation • Role of ontology in natural-language systems
  • Ontology, cognition, perception • Conceptual schemas, perceptual invariances and ontological categorization • Psychological experiments evaluating the cognitive adequacy of ontological categories
  • Ontology and content standards • Library science • Knowledge organization • Museums and cultural repositories • Multimedia content • Product descriptions • Process and service descriptions • Biomedical and other scientific terminologies
  • Innovative ontology-based applications

Editorial Board


John Bateman
Faculty of Linguistics and Literary Sciences
Bremen University, Bremen, Germany

Janna Hastings
Medical Knowledge and Decision Support
Institute for Implementation Science in Health Care
Faculty of Medicine, University of Zurich
and School of Medicine, University of St. Gallen, Switzerland

Founding Editors

Nicola Guarino
National Research Council Institute for Cognitive Sciences and Technologies
(ISTC-CNR), Italy

Mark A. Musen
Stanford University

Associate Editors

Philipp Cimiano
University of Bielefeld, Germany

Giancarlo Guizzardi
University of Bolzano

Robert Hoehndorf
Thuwal, Saudi Arabia

Leo Obrst
The MITRE Corporation

Barry Smith
State University of New York at Buffalo

Michael F. Uschold
Reinvent Technology

Laure Vieu
Toulouse, France

Editorial Board

João Paulo Almeida
Federal University of Espírito Santo

Mauricio Almeida
Federal University of Minas Gerais
Belo Horizonte, Brazil

Nathalie Aussenac-Gilles
Université Paul Sabatier
Toulouse, France

Adrien Barton
Toulouse, France

Brandon Bennett
University of Leeds
United Kingdom

John Beverley
University at Buffalo
Buffalo, NY, USA

Thomas Bittner
State University of New York at Buffalo

Alex Borgida
Rutgers University

Stefano Borgo
Trento, Italy

Mathias Brochhausen
University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences
Little Rock, AR, USA

Boyan Brodaric
Natural Resources Canada
Ontario, Canada

Vinay Chaudhri
SRI International

Christiane Fellbaum
Princeton University

Roberta Ferrario
Institute for Cognitive Sciences and Technologies, National Research Council
Trento, Italy

Aldo Gangemi
Rome, Italy

Pawel Garbacz
The John Paul II Catholic University of Lublin

Yolanda Gil
University of Southern California
Marina del Rey, USA

Dagmar Gromann
University of Wien

Michael Gruninger
University of Toronto
Toronto, Canada

Torsten Hahmann
University of Maine

Yongqun (Oliver) He
CCMB Affiliate Faculty, University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, MI, USA

Maria Hedblom
Jönköping University

Heinrich Herre
University of Leipzig

Pascal Hitzler
Kansas State University
Manhattan, KS, USA

Krzysztof Janowicz
University of California
Santa Barbara, USA

Ludger Jansen
Ruhr University of Bochum and University of Rostock

Paul Johannesson
Stockholm University

Gilles Kassel
MIS Laboratory, Jules Verne University of Picardie
Amiens, France

Megan Katsumi
University of Toronto

Maria Keet
University of Cape Town
South Africa

Werner Kuhn
University of California
Santa Barbara, USA

Oliver Kutz
Free University of Bozen-Bolzano

Doug B. Lenat
Austin, USA

Claudio Masolo
Trento, Italy

William E. McCarthy
Michigan State University

Riichiro Mizoguchi
Japan Advanced Institute of Science and Technology

Fabian Neuhaus
University of Magdeburg

Neil Otte
Johns Hopkins University
Baltimore, MA, USA

Chris Partridge
BORO Solutions
London, United Kingdom

Maria Teresa Pazienza
University of Rome Tor Vergata

Daniele Porello
Trento, Italy

Robert Porzel
University of Bremen
Bremen, Germany

Florian Probst
SAP Research
Darmstadt, Germany

Daniele Radicioni
University of Torino

Emilio Sanfilippo
Institute for Cognitive Sciences and Technologies (ISTC)
National Research Council (CNR)

Marco Schorlemmer
Artificial Intelligence Research Institute, IIIA-CSIC
Catalonia, Spain

Selja Seppälä
University College Cork

Amit P. Sheth
Wright State University
Dayton, USA

Elena Simperl
University of Southampton
United Kingdom

Veda Storey
Georgia State University
Atlanta, USA

Walter Terkaj
Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (CNR)
Istituto di Sistemi e Tecnologie Industriali Intelligenti per il Manifatturiero Avanzato (STIIMA)
Milan, Italy

Hans Weigand
Tilburg University
The Netherlands

Bob Young
Loughborough University
United Kingdom

Assistant Editor

Mihai Pomarlan
Bremen University
Bremen, Germany

Author Guidelines

Submission of Manuscripts

All correspondence concerning editorial matters as well as information regarding submissions should be sent to the Assistant Editor:
Mihai Pomarlan
Faculty of Linguistics
University of Bremen
Bibliothek Strasse 1
28259 Bremen
Tel.: +49 17627951142
Email: pomarlan at

Authors are requested to submit their manuscript electronically through the journal’s editorial management system accessible by this website ("Submit Manuscript").
Note that the manuscript should be uploaded as one .pdf file with tables and figures included within the text.

Required files (after the acceptance of the paper)
After the article has been accepted, the following electronic files are required:
a word processor file of the text, such as Word or LateX. If using LaTex please use our
LaTeX template and also send a pdf version of the LaTeX file separate files of all figures (if any); see "Preparation of manuscripts" for the required file formats. If using Word please use our Word template.

Colour figures
It is possible to have figures printed in colour, provided the cost of their reproduction is paid for by the author. See Preparation of Manuscripts for the required file formats.

Open Access option
The IOS Press Open Library® offers authors an Open Access (OA) option. By selecting the OA option, the article will be freely available from the moment it is published, also in the pre-press module. In the Open Library® the article processing charges are paid in the form of an Open Access Fee. Authors will receive an Open Access Order Form upon acceptance of their article. Open Access is entirely optional.
See also our website for more information about this option
IOS Press Open Library®

IOS Pre-press
This journal publishes all its articles in the IOS Press Pre-Press module. By publishing articles ahead of print the latest research can be accessed much quicker. The pre-press articles are the corrected proof versions of the article and are published online shortly after the proof is created and author corrections implemented. Pre-press articles are fully citable by using the DOI number.
As soon as the pre-press article is assigned to an issue, the final bibliographic information will be added. The pre-press version will then be replaced by the updated, final version


Organization of the paper and style of presentation
Manuscripts must be written in English and American spelling should be used consistently throughout the manuscript. Authors whose native language is not English are recommended to seek the advice of a native English speaker, if possible, before submitting their manuscripts.

International Science Editing offers a language and copyediting service to all scientists who want to publish their manuscript in scientific peer-reviewed periodicals and books.

Manuscripts should be prepared with wide margins and double spacing throughout, including the abstract, footnotes and references. Every page of the manuscript, including the title page, references, tables, etc., should be numbered. However, in the text no reference should be made to page numbers; if necessary, one may refer to sections. Try to avoid the excessive use of italics and bold face.

Manuscripts should be organized in the following order:
- Title page
- Body of text (divided by subheadings)
- Acknowledgements
- References
- Tables
- Figure captions
- Figures

Headings and subheadings should be numbered and typed on a separate line, without indentation.

SI units should be used, i.e., the units based on the metre, kilogramme, second, etc.

Title page
The title page should provide the following information:
- Title (should be clear, descriptive and not too long)
- Name(s) of author(s); please indicate who is the corresponding author
- Full affiliation(s)
- Present address of author(s), if different from affiliation
- Complete address of corresponding author, including tel. no., fax no. and e-mail address
- Abstract; should be clear, descriptive, self-explanatory and not longer than 200 words, it should also be suitable for publication in abstracting services
- Keywords.

Number as Table 1, Table 2 etc, and refer to all of them in the text.
All tables should be contained within the manuscript itself, and embedded in the text.
Each table should have a brief and self-explanatory title.
Column headings should be brief, but sufficiently explanatory. Standard abbreviations of units of measurement should be added between parentheses.
Vertical lines should not be used to separate columns. Leave some extra space between the columns instead.
Any explanations essential to the understanding of the table should be given in footnotes at the bottom of the table.

Number figures as Fig. 1, Fig. 2, etc and refer to all of them in the text.
All figures and other graphics should be contained within the manuscript itself, and embedded in the text.
Colour figures can be included, provided the cost of their reproduction is paid for by the author.
For the file formats of the figures please take the following into account:
- line art should be have a minimum resolution of 600 dpi, save as EPS or TIFF
- grayscales (incl photos) should have a minimum resolution of 300 dpi (no lettering), or 500 dpi (when there is lettering); save as tiff
- do not save figures as JPEG, this format may lose information in the process
- do not use figures taken from the Internet, the resolution will be too low for printing
- do not use colour in your figures if they are to be printed in black & white, as this will reduce the print quality (note that in software often the default is colour, you should change the settings)
- for figures that should be printed in colour, please send a CMYK encoded EPS or TIFF

Figures should be designed with the format of the page of the journal in mind. They should be of such a size as to allow a reduction of 50%.
On maps and other figures where a scale is needed, use bar scales rather than numerical ones, i.e., do not use scales of the type 1:10,000. This avoids problems if the figures need to be reduced.
Each figure should have a self-explanatory caption. The captions to all figures should be typed on a separate sheet of the manuscript.
Photographs are only acceptable if they have good contrast and intensity.

Authors are requested to use the APA (American Psychological Association) citation style. APA in-text citations should include the author's last name followed by the year of publication. There are are two possibilities for in-text citations, as in the following examples:

-Name (year), as in: "Author(2017) claims that..." (command in latex: \cite{name});

-(Name, year), as in "Such theory has been proven correct (Author, 2017)" (command in latex: \citep{name}).

We encourage authors to use the former format whenever possible.

All publications cited in the text should be presented in an alphabetical list of references at the end of the manuscript. Submitted articles can be listed as (author(s), unpublished data). See their website for more information. Authors are responsible for checking the accuracy of all references. Manuscripts will not be considered if they do not conform to the APA citation guidelines.

References must be listed alphabetically in APA style:

Anderson, A. K. (2005). Affective influences on the attentional dynamics supporting awareness. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 154, 258–281.

Anderson, A. K., Christoff, K., Panitz, D., De Rosa, E., & Gabrieli, J. D. E. (2003). Neural correlates of the automatic processing of threat facial signals.Journal of Neuroscience, 23, 5627–5633.

Armony, J. L., & Dolan, R. J. (2002). Modulation of spatial attention by fear-conditioned stimuli: An event-related fMRI study. Neuropsychologia, 40, 817–826.

Beck, A. T., Epstein, N., Brown, G., & Steer, R. A. (1988). An inventory for measuring clinical anxiety: Psychometric properties.Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 56,893–897.

Calvo, M. G., & Lang, P. J. (2004). Gaze patterns when looking at emotional pictures: Motivationally biased attention.Motivation and Emotion, 28, 221–243.

Carretie, L., Hinojosa, J. A., Martin-Loeches, M., Mecado, F., & Tapia, M. (2004). Automatic attention to emotional stimuli: Neural correlates.Human Brain Mapping, 22, 290–299.


Copyright of your article
Authors submitting a manuscript do so on the understanding that they have read and agreed to the terms of the IOS Press Author Copyright Agreement.

Quoting from other publications
An author, when quoting from someone else's work or when considering reproducing figures or table from a book or journal article, should make sure that he is not infringing a copyright. Although in general an author may quote from other published works, he should obtain permission from the holder of the copyright if he wishes to make substantial extracts or to reproduce tables, plates or other figures. If the copyright holder is not the author of the quoted or reproduced material, it is recommended that the permission of the author should also be sought. Material in unpublished letters and manuscripts is also protected and must not be published unless permission has been obtained. Submission of a paper will be interpreted as a statement that the author has obtained all the necessary permission. A suitable acknowledgement of any borrowed material must always be made.


The corresponding author will receive a PDF proof and is asked to check this proof carefully (the publisher will execute a cursory check only). Corrections other than printer's errors, however, should be avoided. Costs arising from such corrections will be charged to the authors.


How to order reprints, a PDF file, journals, or IOS Press books
The corresponding author of a contribution to the journal will receive a complimentary PDF Author’s Copy of the article, unless otherwise stated. This PDF copy is watermarked and for personal use only. A free PDF copy will not be provided for conference proceedings and abstract issues. An order form for a PDF file without watermark, reprints or additional journal copies will be provided along with the PDF proof.

If you wish to order reprints of an earlier published article, please contact the publisher for a quotation. IOS Press, Fax: +31 20 687 0019. Email:

An author is entitled to 25 % discount on IOS Press books. See Author's discount (25%) on all IOS Press book publications.

Please visit the IOS Press Authors page for further information

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Open access

By default, articles published in Applied Ontology are available only to institutions and individuals with access rights. However, the journal offers all authors the option to purchase open access publication for their article as part of the IOS Press Open Library. This means that the final published version will be freely available to anyone worldwide, indefinitely, under a Creative Commons license and without the need to purchase access to the article. This is also referred to as “gold” open access.

Gold open access pricing
Authors who choose gold open access publication will be subject to an article publication charge of € 1500 / US$ 1500 for publication under the CC BY-NC 4.0 license or € 2150 / US$ 2150 for publication under the CC BY 4.0 license. Pricing is exclusive of possible taxes. After an article is accepted for publication, the corresponding author will be informed regarding the open access option during the production stages, and will have the opportunity to purchase open access for their article. It could be that the open access fee of an article is waived completely due an institutional agreement IOS Press has with the corresponding authors' institution. Please check the institutional agreements page for details.

Green open access
Authors who do not make use of the gold open access option may still make their article freely available using self-archiving, also referred to as green open access. Authors may make their final accepted manuscript available for free download from their personal or institutional website or institutional archive. This model is free for the author.


Applied Ontology is affiliated with the International Association for Ontology and its Applications (IAOA).

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