Curriculum - Collaborative Networks

editor: Mitja Jermol, Centre for knowledge transfer in IT, Jožef Stefan Institute
editor: Davor Orlič, Knowledge 4 All Foundation Ltd.
published: June 17, 2008,  

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Collaborative Networked Organisations


A reference course on CNs has the following generic objectives:

  • Provide an intuitive introduction to the paradigm of CN, with illustration based on case studies, and discuss why collaboration is becoming a key competence.
  • Provide a good understanding of the various technical and scientific components involved in CNs.
  • Develop systems integration competencies (holistic perspective).
  • Contribute to help the student develop planning and problem solving capabilities in the context of integrated and distributed collaborative systems.
  • Develop the capacity to attack problems whose specification is incomplete, leading to focus on creativity and search for new systems and solutions.
  • Clarify and exemplify the multi-disciplinarity of the CN paradigm
  • Develop an understanding and a critical perspective regarding the impacts of ICT in modern society. As specific objectives the course shall help the student understand the various underlying topics in CN and the way they are inter-related, which includes:
  • Acquisition of (business) process modeling skills and familiarization with related tools, such as workflow tools.
  • Understand the basic functionalities of an interoperable infrastructure for collaborative networks.
  • Acquisition of a capability to plan a CN infrastructure fitted to target scenarios.
  • Understand the issues of integration / interoperability among different technologies.
  • Acquisition of skills to specify coordination mechanisms.
  • Understand the role and limitations of standards in supporting collaboration.
  • Distinguish the basic focus of the most typical manifestations of collaborative networks.
  • Understand the main strategies and mechanisms for safe communications and distributed information and knowledge management.
  • Understand the socio-economic impacts of the introduction of new technologies and new paradigms in the companies.
  • Acquisition of a general perspective of the trends and expectations in CNs.

Clearly many of these objectives are not achievable if only presented through the material included in the curriculum. Their achievement also depends on many other factors such as the practical work (lab experiments), the support materials and case studies, and even the pedagogic approach. As the survey work has shown, there is a lack of support materials for teaching CNs. At least in terms of materials available through the web, only a few support texts and slides could be found (in several cases, even in languages other than English). In our study, direct enquiries to the persons that have organized courses, also did not produce more information either. One of the major difficulties observed so far is the lack of well prepared examples / case studies and laboratory experiments that could provide some practical experience and, at the same time, fit within the time limits of a single course.


Collaborative networked organisations, collaboration, Virtual Organisations Breeding Environment, Virtual enterprise, Virtual Organization, Dynamic Virtual Organization, Extended Enterprise, VO Breeding environment, Professional virtual community, e-Science, Virtual laboratory, Collaborative Networks


In this course the learner will get basic knowledge on the emerging scientific discipline – Collaborative Networked Organisations. You will learn basic concepts, historical context and rationales for the new discipline. The primary focus for a curriculum development will be on engineers and engineering students with a reasonable background in computer science. The secondary focus will in fact require the opposite background, namely computer science students with a reasonable background in engineering. In the case of engineering students, students at their final part of the engineering course or MS in Computer Science) are envisaged.


Course is composed of:

  1. reading the document – this document
  2. watching the video lecture on-line in VLC
  3. studying additional materials and presentations
  4. asking questions and debating in VLC

User type

researchers, business decision makers, engineers, students, scholars and general public

Background knowledge

Basic knowledge on CNO go to ALL COURSES page

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