Business & Information Systems Engineering

Document Type

Research Paper


Conceptual schemas are the basis to build well-grounded Information Systems, by representing the main concepts of a domain of knowledge, as well as the relationships among them. Since conceptual schemas focus on the concepts, they are independent of the specific technological platform used to implement them. This allows a single conceptual schema to be transformed into different platform-specific models according to the implementation requirements. This is a non-trivial process that is crucial for the performance and maintainability of the system, as well as for the accomplishment of the domain data requirements. Much research has been done on transforming conceptual schemas into relational data models. Nevertheless, less work has been done on transforming conceptual schemas into property graphs, a data structure indispensable to building appropriate and efficient systems based on graph databases. The work proposes a systematic approach to transform conceptual schemas, represented as UML class diagrams, into property graphs by using a set of transformation rules and patterns applied in a systematic way. Besides a practical example used to help the presentation of the proposed approach, the evaluation has been done by measuring different quality dimensions such as semantic equivalence, readability, maintainability, complexity, size, and performance.