Free University of Bozen-Bolzano
Faculty of Computer Science
European Master in Computational Logic
Home page of the course
Ontology and Database Systems
A draft version of the lecture notes for
Part 6 (ALC) is available.
Official course description
Research on ontologies is focussed on logic-based formalisms providing powerful
deduction services with expressive conceptual languages and with high
computational complexity. In contrast, database research deals with efficient
storage and retrieval of large amounts of documents with simple languages. The
module introduces current logic-based approaches trying to merge the two
disciplines: formalisms and technologies related to problems concerning
Conceptual Data Modelling and Ontology Design, Intelligent Information Access
and Query processing, Database Theory, Information Integration, Peer to Peer
Information Systems. The main objective is that upon completion of this module,
students have a detailed understanding of how knowledge is formalized and
processed in ontology research using description logics, and of problems and
issues that have to be respected. They furthermore will have acquired skills in
designing, formally specifying, and realizing techniques of conceptual design,
database access and integration.
Prerequisites. Notions on first-order logic as taught in an introductory
BSc course on mathematical logic, and on relational databases as taught in an
introductory Bsc course; Java programming and SQL with JDBC Connectivity.
The course is structured in two modules:
- Foundations of Databases (4 CFU); lecturer: Werner Nutt
- Knowledge Representation and Ontologies (8 CFU);
lecturer: Diego Calvanese
A detailed program is available.
Teaching material and Resources
- [M1] Lecture Notes for Ontology and Database
Systems - Foundations of
Databases (including coursework). Werner Nutt. 2015.
- [M2] Lecture Notes for Ontology and Database
Systems - Knowledge Representation and
(including coursework). Diego
- [M3] Lab
Exercises for Ontology and Database Systems. Davide Lanti. 2018.
Databases. Addison Wesley, 1995. S. Abiteboul, R. Hull,
Description Logic Handbook: Theory, Implementation and
Applications (2nd edition). Cambridge University Press, 2007.
Edited by F. Baader, D. Calvanese, D. McGuinness, D. Nardi,
Ontologies and databases:
The DL-Lite approach.
Diego Calvanese, Giuseppe De Giacomo, Domenico Lembo, Maurizio Lenzerini,
Antonella Poggi, Mariano Rodriguez-Muro, and Riccardo Rosati.
In Semantic Technologies for Information Systems - 5th Int. Reasoning
Web Summer School (RW 2009), volume 5689 of Lecture Notes in Computer
Science, pages 255-356. Springer, 2009.
- Additional reading material is available
- Further reading material might also be assigned on an individual basis,
depending on the assigned project.
Teaching format. The course is organized as frontal lectures on the
course topics, possibly complemented by monographic seminars that serve as a
starting point for discussing the techniques involved. During lab sessions the
students will familiarize with the usage and internals of state-of-the-art
tools for managing and querying relational data sources through an ontology,
and will work on a project.
- Schedule: The course is taught in the 2nd semester: from February 28
to June 15, 2017.
- Lectures: Lecture Room E420, Ser
- Tuesday: 10:45-12:45 (Calvanese)
- Thursday: 10:45-12:45 (Calvanese)
- Friday: 8:30-10:30 (Nutt)
- Exercises: Lecture Room E420, Ser E
- Tuesday: 14:00-16:00 (Lanti)
- Friday: 14:00-16:00 - every 2nd week (Nutt)
- Teaching assistant for the Knowledge Representation and Ontologies
part: Davide Lanti
- The projects are assigned in the second part of the course, after the
necessary theoretical notions to work on the project have been presented.
- Projects may be carried out individually or in small groups of 2 to 3
- The projects will build on advanced tools for ontology editing and
management. Specifically, the project will be developed making use of:
- the protege ontology
- the ontop system for
ontology-based data access.
- Please consult the
describing the material to produce and present for the project.
Assessment. The final mark will be based on:
- a final exam (written or oral) [55%-75% of mark]
- a project [25% of mark]
- written coursework [up to 20% of mark]
A mock exam is available:
- In general, the final exam will be written. In the case where only very
few students register for the exam, the lecturers might decide to hold an
oral exam instead of the written one.
- To pass the exam, both the final exam (1) and the project (2) have to be
passed, while the written coursework (3) is optional.
- The final mark is computed as a weighted average of the exam mark
(55%-75%), the project mark (25%), and the coursework mark (up to 20%).
- If the coursework is accomplished, it can substitute the final exam for
up to 20% (the better of the two marks between final exam and coursework is
- In case of a positive mark, project and coursework mark will count for
all 3 regular exam sessions of the Academic Year (i.e., if the student
fails or does not take the final exam, (s)he keeps the coursework and the
project mark and only needs to retake the final exam).
teaching page of Diego Calvanese
Monday, 22-Oct-2018 3:47:03 CEST