Merging workflows: A new perspective on connecting business processes

Shuang Sun, Akhil Kumar, John Yen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

56 Scopus citations


This paper describes the concept of workflow merge and methods for merging business processes. We grouped merges in four categories according to the type of merge: sequential, parallel, conditional, and iterative, and describe the corresponding algorithms for performing these operations. We give results that allow us to determine whether a merge operation is sound. It is shown that to avoid invalid merges, one should choose merge points between which a sub-workflow, called a merge region, is well structured. These findings can provide useful guidance for future workflow merge research. We also raise issues of more complex merge problems, such as merge conflicts, semantic ambiguities and workflow splits.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)844-858
Number of pages15
JournalDecision Support Systems
Issue number2
StatePublished - Nov 1 2006

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Management Information Systems
  • Information Systems
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Information Systems and Management


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