A PhD position open at DISP Lab, Lyon, France

At DISP Lab, at Lyon, France, there is a PhD opening on « Ensuring Interoperability for “smart” information systems”. More information below.

What is important is that all the development will be done using Pharo/

If you are interested, please contact Jannik Laval <jannik.laval@gmail.com> 

Ph.D. thesis (CIFRE)
Berger Levrault and DISP Lab, Lyon, France

Title: Ensuring Interoperability for “smart” information systems

Enterprise: Berger Levrault
Research Laboratory: DISP Lab
Where: Lyon, France
Recruitment date: As soon as possible
Application deadline: As soon as possible
Function: 3 years PhD candidate position in Berger Levrault (CDI). The
position will be part time between Berger Levrault and DISP Lab.
Research topic : data interoperability, application exchange protocols,
service-oriented architecture, event architecture, semantics, monitoring.


The need for sharing, exchanging and promoting information from information
systems is constantly increasing and now represents a major concern in the
various reforms of the local public sector (consolidation of local
authorities, implementation of in place in 2016 Hospital Group Territory,
Digital Republic). It is therefore essential to design “platforms” capable
of providing answers to the rationalisation and simplification of data
exchanges between software applications and with the outside world to
promote and simplify the application of all these reforms.

In addition, service-oriented architectures and event architectures (SOA,
EDA) are mature and widely used. At Berger-Levrault, their implementation
ensures the scalability and maintainability of solutions. These
architectures are characterised by the flexibility and the loose coupling
of the subsystems that compose them (ie services, applications, IS …) and
rely on several means (Hohpe & Woolf, 2004) to route the data within this
network of systems communicating. At this stage of maturity, we observe
that these data exchanges are operational and meet the requirements of
interoperability between heterogeneous systems (Leal, 2019).

Nevertheless, the number of standards recognised and used by the French
public sector, the privileged sector of Berger-Levrault, increases the
level of interconnection difficulties (Kurniawan & Ashari, 2015) of the
different solutions developed by Berger-Levrault. This is all the more
remarkable when it comes to communicating with external solutions or
platforms (partners and / or competitors). This multiplicity of exchanges
and types of exchanges generates a great deal of complexity and highlights
the need to master the exchange system as effectively as possible. Berger
Levraut today lacks visibility on existing exchanges and mechanisms to
evaluate them (Leal, Guédria, & Panetto, 2019) which complicates the
detection of dysfunctions and the discovery of their origins.

Moreover, it is essential for the Berger-Levrault applications to be able
to adapt to the new rules and standards while continuing to integrate the
dematerialization of the public service. The evolution of these modalities
has an almost systematic impact on the exchange of data put in place to
ensure interoperability. Hence the need to build flexible and scalable
exchange architectures and to follow the evolution of these exchanges.

These transformations imply a large volume of data exchanged and subject to
variations that can be strong during periods of “high attendance” such as
elections by electronic vote. The very nature of exchanges can be affected
especially with the multiplicity of connected objects (Buyya & Dastjerdi,
2016). These are increasingly used by public institutions for the benefit
of the management of city facilities or user services. The increase in
volumes of data exchanged therefore implies the implementation of exchange
architectures that are able to support the load but also the great
variability of the types and frequencies of data production. This requires
distributed architectures (in infrastructure and flow), adaptable or even
self-adaptable (Gascon-Samson et al 2015) to promote the system’s
resistance to faults while avoiding potential congestion phenomena.

Based on this reflection, a research project was conducted in partnership
by Berger-Levrault and the DISP laboratory (Amokrane et al., 2018). These
early works have identified a set of scientific and technical barriers:
• Lack of visibility on existing interoperability exchanges. Indeed, the
current exchanges are not traced and the existing monitoring mechanisms
focus mainly on low level information, such as the performance of the
infrastructure or the use of the memory, without correlation with business
information. In addition, few methods for evaluating interoperability are
concerned with the effective evaluation (a posteriori of the
implementation) of the interoperability of the data, and few of them are
tooled (Leal, Guédria, & Panetto, 2019).
• The complexity of trade maintenance. This is due to the lack of
traceability of the exchanges, on the one hand, and that of the evolution
of the exchange architecture configurations on the other hand. This
complicates the identification of failures or dysfunctions and the analysis
of their causes, and poses difficulties for the setting up of mechanisms of
alerts or significant notifications. In addition, the lack of
capitalisation of information relating to trade does not allow to consider
a forecast maintenance.
• The development of the different modules of the exchange system is manual
and the remediation of malfunctions is done in an ad hoc manner. In
addition to the cost of development and correction that this implies, this
does not meet the responsiveness requirements of some business areas. Hence
the need to build adaptable exchange systems using dynamic interoperability
hubs (Agostinho, et al., 2016).

The objective of this thesis proposal is to produce an approach to the
implementation cycle of application exchanges, from design to maintenance,
which will enhance the reliability and resilience of the interoperability
exchange system. The solution will ultimately orchestrate all the
application and service exchanges to ensure optimisation of the use of
software and infrastructure resources of public institutions.

To meet the needs in terms of interoperability, the work to be carried out
is articulated in two axes that we structure as follows:
– A flexible architecture for the implementation of interoperability. Here
we consider the basic functionalities reflecting the activities necessary
for the establishment of the means of interoperability.
– A reflexive architecture for managing interoperability at a meta-level.
This axis relates to setting up means of administration, monitoring and
maintenance of the exchange network set up for interoperability.
The work must also incorporate the concepts of security, scalability and
usability. Requirements to be met when developing any solution to lift the
locks and meet the objectives of this thesis work.

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~~Jannik Laval~~
Responsable Pédagogique Licence Coordonnateur de Projet
IUT Lumière, Université Lumière Lyon 2
laboratoire DISP
+33 4 78 77 43 06