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White Paper for an Interoperability Process

The approach to interoperability for all sectors derived from the Technical Report
ISO TR 28380 is available on this page.

Interoperability of ICT systems is a key factor for the successful transition to online business

Digital tools are becoming increasingly important in our society and economy. Successful online business (e-business) depends on data that flows seamlessly within and between organizations. The ICT systems must be scalable, both in terms of additional functions and the number of transactions and business partners and suppliers involved. The integration profiles and integration processes described here support the definition, implementation, testing and deployment of interoperable ICT systems for different business domains. This enables communities and businesses to develop cost-efficient and scalable integrated ICT-Infrastructures and applications that can support our society and economy.


Available communication standards allow a large degree of flexibility. When integrating software solutions for specific business transactions, developers must agree among all manufacturers on coordinated restrictions on the standards used. SDOs, goverments, Interest groups, vendors and users can together record these agreements in interoperability profiles. The basis of the methodology is to ensure acceptance and technical feasibility. This approach to interoperability covers the steps from the description of the business domain, the specification of the interoperability profiles to interoperability testing and deployment in real-world ICT systems.


The approach provides a common understanding and framework to develop and reuse solutions for data exchange: interoperability profiles instead of proprietary solutions. The transparency of the process ensures a sustainable investment protection for vendors and fosters competition, increases product quality and performance at lower costs.

The approach to interoperability has been developed on the basis of established processes in the healthcare sector and was adopted for the energy and railway sector but can be used for any type of data exchange of ICT systems and also for other sectors.


The greater vision: From an initiative to a European organisation

It is important that harmonization processes take place on an international level to ease implementation and facilitate the required communication of the future digitalized systems. The cooperation between this initiative and relevant actors, further European initiatives and relevant EU projects should be encouraged. This initiative offers collaboration with interested stakeholders in other EU Member States and provides expertise such as process support, training, provision of test systems and tools to support a growing community in Europe.


The paper is a result of the project IRS Cargo funded by the Austrian Research Promotion Agency (FFG) under project number 891459.The research leading to these results has received funding from the Mobility of the Future programme. Mobility of the Future is a research, technology and innovation funding programme of the Republic of Austria, Ministry of Climate Action. The Austrian Research Promotion Agency (FFG) has been authorised for the programme management.