Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

The AI Department of the Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam hosts a world-leading Semantic Web research group. The group initiated and coordinated the EU's first Semantic Web project (On-To-Knowledge) in 1999, and has since participated in key EU-funded projects such as Knowledge Web, SEKT and SWAP. The group played a significant role in the EU contribution to the definition of OWL, the W3C standard Semantic Web representation language.

For the past ten years, the group has also been active in the area of medical guidelines and protocols, with an emphasis on constructing formal and semi-formal models of guidelines (using the Proforma and Asbru languages), and on using such models for validation and verification. Much of this expertise was built up in previous EU-funded FET- open projects (Protocure-I, Protocure-II).


VUA will contribute to the following topics of the EURECA project: semantic interoperability between health-care record systems and clinical trial systems, matching patient records to eligibility criteria of clinical trials, support for development of eligibility criteria of clinical trials by approximate reasoning, reuse health-care records for clinical research and medical logic representation based on experience on representation of ontologies and guidelines. The partner brings key expertise in the area of Semantic Web technology. Through leadership in research on Semantic Web, it has significant expertise in the area of ontologies, their use in modelling biomedical knowledge (e.g the OpenPhacts project), and their use as key tools in achieving interoperability. VUA will lead WP6 Applications, semantic reasoning and decision support, and contribute to the definition, implementation and validation of the EURECA semantic interoperability environment and of several software services, such as patient recruitment and contextualization of information to a patient case.