*** UPDATE: Registration for the virtual ICBO 2020 is now open: https://summerofknowledge.inf.unibz.it/registration/ ***

*** Due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, some parts of ICBO 2020 will take place virtually, but the major part of the conference will be *postponed* to September 2021. Proceedings will still be published in 2020 as usual.***

The International Conference on Biomedical Ontologies (ICBO) is a premier annual conference series that brings together researchers, students and professionals involved in the development and application of ontologies in all areas of biology, medicine, diseases, human health, genome biology, environment, biomes, nutrition, food, plants, agriculture and others.

This year, ICBO will be run jointly with Ontologies and Data for the Life Sciences (ODLS), an annual workshop series that focuses on data management and data processing in the life sciences and in health care, covering the overall spectrum of biomedical information management, from experimental data acquisition and preprocessing across analysis, structuring and interpretation of data, up to developing structured representations of knowledge, in particular in the form of ontologies, with their various applications.

The virtual event of ICBO 2020 will be held as a part of the Bolzano Summer of Knowledge 2020, together with EKAW 2020.


The theme for ICBO|ODLS 2020 is Ontology across Boundaries. This includes the topics of:

  • Ontologies at the practical interfaces between different yet interrelated disciplines and communities of practice (e.g. biology–chemistry, immunology–epidemiology etc.)
  • Ontologies overcoming boundaries between basic research and translation
  • Ontologies and the socioeconomic boundaries that can lead to differences in health outcomes across different population groups
  • Ontology as a tool for open science to reduce segregation of research results and improve access to the full body of knowledge across scientific disciplines, especially as applied to urgent topics such as the climate crisis
  • Ontologies in practice across national boundaries, e.g. medical ontologies needing to serve international contexts
  • Ontology in translation: ontologies supporting knowledge, data and applications in multiple languages
  • Overcoming the practical boundaries of ontologies in integrated applications including data annotation, data integration, data science, machine learning and other artificial intelligence technologies


ICBO|ODLS 2020 is co-chaired by Frank Loebe and Janna Hastings. The full organising committee is detailed here.

The Bolzano Summer of Knowledge 2020 is being arranged locally by Oliver Kutz and the Research Centre on Knowledge and Data (KRDB), Faculty of Computer Science, Free University of Bozen-Bolzano.

Keynote Speakers

We are delighted to announce that our keynote speakers for ICBO 2020 will be:

Professor Susan Michie, head of the Centre for Behaviour Change, University College London.

Dr Chris Mungall, Department Head, Molecular Ecosystems Biology, Berkeley Lab.


EKAW 2020 will happen 16-20 September 2020 as a virtual event.

Further update for deadline and organisation of EKAW:

Considering the COVID-19 pandemic, the revised submission deadline for abstracts is May 25, full papers are due June 1.

Please note further:

  • The organisation team of EKAW 2020 is committed to publishing the EKAW proceedings with Springer in 2020.
  • EKAW will happen as a virtual conference, physical attendance of authors of accepted papers at EKAW will therefore not be required.
  • Keynote Speakers are confirmed as virtual events.
  • The call for (virtual) Posters & Demos is forthcoming.
  • Participation/Publishing at EKAW will be at a heavily discounted fee (announced soon).


More on the 30+ year history of the EKAW Conference Series can be found here.

The 22nd International Conference on Knowledge Engineering and Knowledge Management is concerned with all aspects about eliciting, acquiring, modeling and managing knowledge, and the construction of knowledge-intensive systems and services for the semantic web, knowledge management, e-business, natural language processing, intelligent information integration, and so on.

EKAW 2020 welcomes papers dealing with theoretical, methodological, experimental, and application-oriented aspects of knowledge engineering and knowledge management. In particular, but not exclusively, we are expecting papers about methods, tools and methodologies relevant to the following topics: knowledge and AI, knowledge discovery, knowledge management, knowledge engineering and acquisition, social and cognitive aspects of knowledge representation, and applications in specific domains.

EKAW 2020 will be part of Bolzano Summer of Knowledge 2020, together with ICBO 2020 and FOIS 2020, and more.


Research Centre on Knowledge and Data (KRDB)
Faculty of Computer Science, Free University of Bozen-Bolzano

FOIS XI (2020 -> 2021) Postponed

11th International Conference on Formal Ontology in Information Systems (FOIS XI)

Unfortunately, because of the Corona situation we had to postpone FOIS XI by one year. Thus, the conference will occur in September 13-16, 2021 in Bozen.

Here is what this means in practical terms:

– FOIS technical papers (main track): The paper submission for the FOIS XI main technical track is now closed and papers are in review. The accepted papers will be published and made available in open access in 2020.  Authors of these papers may present their publications in September 2021, but this is optional.

– Early Career Symposium, Demo and Industry Track, Ontology Show and Tell: The submission to these tracks is closed for now and will be re-opened in Spring 2021.

Given the delay of FOIS XI, it was suggested to organise a second round of submissions for technical papers with a deadline in spring 2021. One challenge is that the proceedings of the first round of submissions will already have been published at that time. We are currently looking for a solution for that issue that will enable a high-quality publication of the second round of submissions.



Arianna Betti, University of Amsterdam
Nicola Guarino, ISTC-CNR, Trento
Stefan Schulz, Medical University of Graz———————————–

The advent of complex information systems that rely on robust, coherent and formal representations of their subject matter, has led to the exploitation of ontological analysis and ontology-based representation. The systematic study of such analysis and representation is at the center of the modern discipline of formal ontology, which is a general theory of the types of entities and relations making up domains of interest.Researchers in many domains engage with formal ontology to provide a solid foundation for their work. Common application areas include conceptual modeling, database design, knowledge engineering and management, software engineering, organizational modeling, artificial intelligence, robotics, computational linguistics, the life sciences, bioinformatics and scientific research in general, geographic information science, information retrieval, library and information science, and the Semantic Web.The FOIS conference is a meeting point for all researchers with an interest in formal ontology. The conference encourages new high quality submissions on both theoretical issues and concrete applications. As in previous years, FOIS 2020 aims to be a nexus of interdisciplinary research and communication.FOIS is the flagship conference of the International Association for Ontology and its Applications (IAOA: http://iaoa.org/), which is a non-profit organization promoting interdisciplinary research and international collaboration in formal ontology.

FOIS 2020 includes a number of activities:
* FOIS conference (single track program)
* workshops
* tutorials
* a young researchers symposium
* a demo and industry track
* an ontology show and tell


Areas of particular interest to FOIS include the following:

Foundational Issues
* Kinds of entities: particulars/universals, continuants/occurrents, abstracta/concreta, dependent entities/independent entities, natural objects/artifacts
* Formal relations: parthood, identity, connection, dependence, constitution, causality, subsumption, instantiation
* Vagueness and granularity
* Space, time, and changeMethodological issues
* Top-level vs. domain-specific ontologies
* Role of reference ontologies
* Ontology similarity, integration and alignment
* Ontology modularity, contextuality, and evolution
* Formal comparison among ontologies
* Relationship with cognition, language, semantics, context
* Ontologies and Knowledge GraphsDomain-specific ontologies
* Ontology of physical reality (matter, space, time, motion etc.)
* Ontology of biological reality (organisms, genes, proteins, cells etc.)
* Ontology of mental reality and agency (beliefs, intentions, emotions, perceptions, cognition,  etc.)
* Ontology of artifacts, functions, capacities and roles
* Ontology of social reality (institutions, organizations, norms, social relationships, artistic expressions etc.)Applications
* Ontology-driven information systems design
* Ontological foundations for conceptual modeling
* Knowledge management
* Qualitative modeling
* Computational linguistics
* Information retrieval
* Semantic Web
* Business modeling
* Ontologies and Machine Learning
* Ontologies and Explainable AI
* Ontologies for particular scientific disciplines (biology, chemistry, geography, physics, geoscience, cognitive sciences, linguistics etc.)
* Ontologies for engineering: shape, form and function, artifacts, manufacturing, design, architecture etc.
* Ontologies for the humanities: arts, cultural studies, history, literature, philosophy, etc.
* Ontologies for the social sciences: economics, law, political science, anthropology, archeology, etc.

General Chair
* Roberta Ferrario (ISTC CNR, Trento, Italy)

Program Chairs
* Boyan Brodaric (Geological Survey of Canada, Canada)
* Fabian Neuhaus (Otto von Guericke University Magdeburg, Germany)

Local Organization
* Oliver Kutz (Free University of Bozen-Bolzano, Italy)
* Nicolas Troquard (Free University of Bozen-Bolzano, Italy)

Publicity Chairs
* Guendalina Righetti (Free University of Bozen-Bolzano, Italy)
* Maria Hedblom (Free University of Bozen-Bolzano, Italy)

Proceedings Chair
* Megan Katsumi (University of Toronto)

Workshop / Tutorial Chairs
* Torsten Hahmann (University of Maine)
* Claudio Masolo (ISTC CNR, Trento, Italy)

Ontology Show and Tell
* Michael Gruninger (University of Toronto)
* Frank Loebe (University of Leipzig)

Early Career Symposium
* Pawel Garbacz (John Paul II Catholic University of Lublin)
* Selja Seppala (University College Cork)

Demo and Industrial Track Chairs
* Robert Hoehndorf (King Abdullah University of Science and Technology)
* Amanda Vizedom (Credit Suisse)


Dear IAOA members,

herewith you receive the July newsletter on events that cover research in ontology (conferences, workshops, etc.) or are associated with IAOA (e.g., meetings of Special Interest Groups (SIGs) and Committees). These newsletters shall inform you about upcoming events and their corresponding deadlines. They may also include short reports of interesting past events, for example, by IAOA members who attended them. The planned frequency of the newsletters ranges from monthly to bi-monthly. This service complements the calendars of events [1] and deadlines [2], which we run for gathering event information. Please notice that such calendars are now easily accessible from the right sidebar of the landing page of the IAOA website [3] and from the Events page [4].

Should you have any further suggestions, comments or questions on this service, please let us know by writing to the Association [5] or publicly to the membership [6].

Should you be aware of events that you wish to be added to the calendar, you may write to [7].

IAOA Executive Council

[1] calendar: “IAOA Check Events”

[2] calendar: “IAOA Check Deadlines”

[3] https://iaoa.org/

[4] https://iaoa.org/index.php/events/

[5] info@iaoa.org

[6] iaoa-member@ovgu.de

[7] calendars@iaoa.org


FOIS 2020 is part of a great wider event, the Bolzano Summer of Knowledge; JOWO and ISAO are also part of it. However, given the coronavirus crisis, the situation is at the moment not completely clear, the latest updates are the following:

*** FOIS 2020: the in-person meeting is postponed to Sept 13-16, 2021, while the proceedings will be made freely available online towards the end of 2020.
*** JOWO 2020: among the workshops originally included in JOWO 2020, some will take place as virtual events, others are postponed to JOWO 2021. Please check the specific websites for more information.
*** ISAO 2020: the in-person summer school is postponed to September 2021
*** EKAW 2020: will be a virtual event in September 2020 with publication of proceedings sticking to the original timeframe.
*** ICBO 2020: will be a virtual event in September 2020 with publication of proceedings sticking to the original timeframe.

Please check the webpages for updates:

*** BoSK 2020: https://summerofknowledge.inf.unibz.it
*** FOIS 2020: https://fois2020.inf.unibz.it
*** JOWO 2020: https://iaoa.org/jowo/
*** ISAO 2020: https://isao2020.inf.unibz.it
*** EKAW 2020: https://ekaw2020.inf.unibz.it/
*** ICBO 2020: https://icbo2020.inf.unibz.it/


* ER Online Summer Seminars (EROSS 2020)
Every Wednesday, next July 22

Website: http://krdb.eu/eross-2020/

* Robophilosophy Conference
August 18-21, Aarhus, Denmark (virtual meeting)

Website: https://conferences.au.dk/robo-philosophy/

* 24th European Conference on Artificial Intelligence (ECAI 2020)
August 29 – September 8, Santiago de Compostela, Spain (virtual meeting)

Website: http://ecai2020.eu/

* 29th IEEE International Conference On Robot and Human Interactive Communication (RO-MAN 2020)
August 31 – September 4, Naples, Italy (virtual meeting)

Website: http://ro-man2020.unina.it/

* 11th International Conference on Computational Creativity (ICCC 2020)
September 7-11, Coimbra, Portugal

Website: http://computationalcreativity.net/iccc20/

* 17th International Conference on Principles of Knowledge Representation and Reasoning (KR 2020)
September 12-18, Rhodes, Greece (in-presence and virtual meeting)

Website: https://kr2020.inf.unibz.it/

* Explainable Logic-Based Knowledge Representation and Reasoning (XLoKR20)
September 12-14, Rhodes, Greece (in-presence and virtual meeting)

Website: https://lat.inf.tu-dresden.de/XLoKR20/

* 22nd International Conference on Knowledge Engineering and Knowledge Management (EKAW 2020)
September 16-20, Bolzano-Bozen, Italy (virtual meeting)

Website: https://ekaw2020.inf.unibz.it/

* 11th International Conference on Biomedical Ontologies (ICBO 2020)
September 16-19, Bolzano-Bozen, Italy (virtual meeting)

Website: https://icbo2020.inf.unibz.it/

* 5th International Workshop on Ontology Modularity (WOMoCoE 2020)
September 16, Bolzano-Bozen, Italy (virtual meeting)

Website: https://womocoe20.fbk.eu/

* Workshop on Scalable Knowledge Graph Engineering (SKALE 2020)
September 16, Bolzano-Bozen, Italy (virtual meeting)

Website: https://skale-workshop.gitlab.io/

* 25th International Conference on Conceptual Structures (ICCS 2020)
September 18-20, Bolzano-Bozen, Italy (virtual meeting)

Website: https://iccs-conference.org/

* 6th Workshop on Formal and Cognitive Reasoning (FCR 2020)
September 21-25, Bamberg, Germany (virtual meeting)

Website: https://www.fernuni-hagen.de/wbs/fcr2020


* 39th International Conference on Conceptual Modeling (ER 2020)
November 3-6, Vienna, Austria (possibility for virtual attendance)

Deadline for submission:
*** Monday, July 27 (workshop papers and tutorial proposals submission)

Website: https://er2020.big.tuwien.ac.at/

* 5th International Workshop on Ontology Modularity (WOMoCoE 2020)
September 16, Bolzano-Bozen, Italy (virtual meeting)

Deadline for submission:
*** Friday, July 31 (abstracts submission)
*** Friday, August 7 (papers submission)

Website: https://womocoe20.fbk.eu/

* Workshop on Scalable Knowledge Graph Engineering (SKALE 2020)
September 16, Bolzano-Bozen, Italy (exploring virtual conference options)

Deadline for submissions:
*** Wednesday, August 5 (abstracts submission)
*** Friday, August 7 (papers submission)

Website: https://skale-workshop.gitlab.io/

* International Workshop on Ontologies for Autonomous Robotics (ROBONTICS 2020)
September 13, Bolzano-Bozen (virtual event)

Deadline for submissions:
*** Friday, August 7 (papers submission)

Website: https://robontics2020.github.io/

* 19th International Semantic Web Conference (ISWC 2020)
November 2-6, Athens, Greece (virtual meeting)

Deadline for submission:
*** Monday, August 10 (poster, demo, industry track submission)
*** Monday, August 17 (workshop papers submission)
*** Wednesday, August 19 (reproducibility track submission)

Website: https://iswc2020.semanticweb.org/

* 10th Joint International Conference on Knowledge Graph (JIST-KG-2020)
November 20-22, Bangkok, Thailand

Deadline for submission:
*** Monday, August 10 (abstracts submission)
*** Monday, August 17 (papers submission)

Website: https://language-semantic.org/jist-kg-2020/

* 15th International Workshop on Ontology Matching (OM 2020)
November 2 or 3, Athens, Greece (virtual meeting)

Deadline for submissions:
*** Monday, August 10 (papers submission)

Website: http://om2020.ontologymatching.org/


* Executive Council (EC) Meeting

next meeting: n.245, August 4, 13:30 UTC
default dates: bi-weekly, on Tuesdays, 13:30 UTC

EC Webpage:

* SWAO SIG Meetings – Semantic Web Applied Ontology SIG

next meeting: n.81, August 3, 14:00 EDT
default dates: 1st Monday of each month, 15:00 EDT

Mailing list archive: https://listserv.ovgu.de/pipermail/iaoa-swao/

SWAO wiki: https://wiki.iaoa.org/index.php/SWAO:Home

Last SWAO Meeting Webpage:

Next SWAO Meeting Webpage:

< end of newsletter >


The Semantic Web Applied Ontology (SWAO) Special Interest Group will be embarking on a new project to develop a guide for ontology development. Though there are existing guides to ontology development we feel there are gaps in the level of detail of ontological analysis. The intent of this project is to create a guide that will be easy enough to use, but still provide a greater measure of analysis. The goal is to provide more robust ontologies.