Agent and Goal-Oriented Software Engineering

... where agent and goal concepts are used as fundamental concepts to model, analyse and design autonomous software systems. Tropos is a methodology which covers all the phases of software development, from requirements analysis, architectural design to the implementation. Tropos is one of the most cited and used agent-oriented methodologies.   The key ideas of the Tropos modelling language have been used in many projects funded at provincial, national and European level, such us IT-PAT-STAMPS, IT-MIUR-FIRB-ASTRO, IT-MIUR-PRINMENSA, EU-FP7-IP-ANIKETOS and EU-ERC-Lucretius ( The Tropos methodology proposes also SAT-based techniques and probabilistic methods to reason about requirements and design models. Extensions of the basic Tropos reasoning framework has been used to reason about risk  and contexts , to choose among di erent design alternatives and, more recently, to reason about commitments and protocols . The Tropos methodology is currently used to the development of serious games to simulate realistic scenarios, such as emergency situations in smart cities and hospitals . Since 2010, Tropos has been adopted as main framework for the development of multi-agent systems within the lab activities of the Agent-Oriented Software Engineering course at the master program in Computer Science of the Department of Engineering and Computer Science.

Security Engineering

... where the goal-oriented approach is applied to model and analyze requirements concerning security (Secure Tropos). Concepts like actor, goal, task, social dependency, trust, ownership and delegation are used to model and analyze security issues. He is the leader of the team that has developed the Socio-Technical Security Modeling Language tool (STS -, which has been used in several research and industrial projects funded at provincial, national and European level, such as IT-PAT-MOSTRO, EU-FP7-IP-ANIKETOS, EU-FP6-IP-SERENITY, and more recently EU-H2020-IA-VISION. The STS method supports the security and privacy-by-design principle where security and privacy requirements are elicited starting from stakeholders needs and international and national laws (e.g., the EU GDPR) and then, following a model driven approach, refi ned in a set of properties to be satis ed by the system-to-be. SecBPM is an extension of BPMN 2.0 with security annotations; fully integrated with STS, it allows analysts to map security and privacy requirements in a set of policies to be satis fied during the execution of business processes. SecBPMN is currently experimented in an industrial project in collaboration with the Province of Trento and the Italian authority for privacy in e-health services (IT-IND-STSPrivacy). STS proposes also modeling techniques for information security risk management, where information are handled as assets of an organization, and security risks and countermeasures are assessed against their economical value.

Multi-view modeling and cross-view reasoning support

... where meta-model based approaches are used to build representations of complex organizational environments from different perspectives (views). Each perspective shows a view of the overall model through a specifi c modeling language and allows experts of different domains to interact one another using their own concepts and modeling abstractions. The approach has been initially adopted within the STS method and then applied to other contexts, such as for the problem of the architectural change management of Air Traffic Management Systems in the European project EU-H2020-RIA-PACAS where cross-view reasoning techniques and gami fication elements  have been used to support users interaction and to allow for an e ffective participation to the change management processes. Similarly, the multi-view modeling is currently experimented in an industrial project IT-IND-DIGICOM where di fferent experts have to explore complex environments from di fferent perspectives in order to find e ffective solutions to the problem of costs management.

Past activities

Other research activities include: Design Patterns , where the Tropos methodology is combined with more traditional software engineering and organizational theories for the de finition, speci fication and management of design patterns; Multi-agent systems for knowledge management, where agent-based technologies are combined with data mining and collaborative filtering techniques (Implicit Culture project); multi-agent systems for mobile devices focusing on negotiation mechanisms for multi-agent systems (e.g., auction) and on wireless infrastructures for ambient Ambient Intelligence applications; Agent-based technology and Service-Oriented System, that is the development of agent-based techniques and methodologies to support the design and the run-time execution of service-oriented systems; and, goal-oriented methodologies for data warehouse design.

Earlier research activities, mainly related to the years of the PhD and PostDoc, include: (2001-2003) Goal driven Knowledge Management; (1999-2003) Agents' Mental State Recognition and Revision; (1998-2003) Belief Revision; (2000-2002) XML and data integration; (1999-2002) Arti cial Intelligence and Law; (1997-1999) Revision of BDI mental states; (1996-1997) BDI Agents; (1998-1999) Distributed Monitoring Systems and Arti cial Intelligence.

More on the publications page.