PhD defense Jan Claes

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Lately, the focus of organizations is changing fundamentally. Where they used to spend almost exclusively attention to results, in terms of goods, services, revenue and costs, they are now concerned about the efficiency of their business processes. Each step of the business processes needs to be known, controlled and optimized. This explains the huge effort that many organizations currently put into the mapping of their processes in so-called (business) process models.

Unfortunately, sometimes these models do not (completely) reflect the business reality or the reader of the model does not interpret the represented information as intended. Hence, whereas on the one hand we observe how organizations are attaching increasing importance to these models, on the other hand we notice how the quality of process models in companies often proves to be insufficient.

The doctoral research makes a significant contribution in this context. This work investigates in detail how people create process models and why and when this goes wrong. A better understanding of current process modeling practice will form the basis for the development of concrete guidelines that result in the construction of better process models in the future.  The first study investigated how we can represent the approach of different modelers in a cognitive effective way, in order to facilitate knowledge building. For this purpose the PPMChart was developed. It represents the different operations of a modeler in a modeling tool in such a way that patterns in their way of working can be detected easily. Through the collection of 704 unique modeling executions (a joint contribution of several authors in the research domain), and through the development of a concrete implementation of the visualization, it became possible to gather a great amount of insights about how different people work in different situations while modeling a concrete process.

The second study explored, based on the discovered modeling patterns of the first study, the potential relations between how process models were being constructed and which quality was delivered. To be precise, three modeling patterns from the previous study were investigated further in their relation with the understandability of the produced process model. By comparing the PPMCharts that show these patterns with corresponding process models, a connection was found in each case. It was noticed that when a process model was constructed in consecutive blocks (i.e., in a structured way), a better understandable process model was produced. A second relation stated that modelers who (frequently) moved (many) model elements during modeling usually created a less understandable model. The third connection was found between the amount of time spent at constructing the model and a declining understandability of the resulting model. These relations were established graphically on paper, but were also confirmed by a simple statistical analysis.

The third study selected one of the relations from the previous study, i.e., the relation between structured modeling and model quality, and investigated this relation in more detail. Again, the PPMChart was used, which has lead to the identification of different ways of structured process modeling. When a task is difficult, people will spontaneously split up this task in sub-tasks that are executed consecutively (instead of simultaneously). Structuring is the way in which the splitting of tasks is handled. It was found that when this happens consistently and according to certain logic, modeling became more effective and more efficient. Effective because a process model was created with less syntactic and semantic errors and efficient because it took less time and modeling operations. Still, we noticed that splitting up the modeling in sub-tasks in a structured way, did not always lead to a positive result. This can be explained by some people structuring the modeling in the wrong way. Our brain has cognitive preferences that cause certain ways of working not to fit. The study identified three important cognitive preferences: does one have a sequential or a global learning style, how context-dependent one is and how big one”s desire and need for structure is. The Structured Process Modeling Theory was developed, which captures these relations and which can form the basis for the development of an optimal individual approach to process modeling. In our opinion the theory has the potential to also be applicable in a broader context and to help solving various types of problems effectively and efficiently.

New Employee: Jonnro Erasmus

JErasmus_I was born and raised in Pretoria, South Africa. I’ve unfortunately never had a lion or a giraffe for a pet though. In 2008 I earned a Bachelor of industrial engineering from the University of Pretoria and in 2012 I completed a Master of Engineering Management from the University of Johannesburg. I’ve spent about six years as an industrial engineer in the electricity and manufacturing industry sectors. My recent research looked into the way Product Lifecycle Management technology can be used to enable collaboration across the product value chain. I’m interested in anything related to business processes, systems engineering and complexity theory. I now aim to make use of my experience and knowledge to contribute as much as possible to the HORSE project (I still don’t know what the acronym is for).

As a PhD student at the Technische Universiteit Eindhoven I have two primary objectives: learning as much as possible and making a meaningful contribution. Oh, perhaps a third objective is also in order: earning a PhD from this wonderful institution. Additionally, I wish to experience the various cultures to be found in and around the university and I want to learn to speak Dutch properly. I look forward to the many interesting discussions we are bound to have here and perhaps even working together in the not too distant future.

Presentation Mohammad Rasouli

Mohammad Rasouli

Information quality in dynamic networked business process management


The competition in globalized markets forces organizations to provide mass-customized integrated solutions for customers. Mass-customization of integrated solutions by business network requires adaptive interactions between parties to address emerging requirements of customers. These adaptive interactions need to be enabled by dynamic networked business processes (DNBP) that are supported by high quality information. However, the dynamic collaboration between parties can result in information quality (IQ) issues such as information syntactic and semantic misalignment,information leakage, and unclear information ownership. To counter negative consequences of poor IQ on the performance, the orchestrator of business network needs to clearly recognize these IQ issues. In this paper, we develop and evaluate a framework to address potential IQ issues related to DNBP. The development of the framework is based on a three step methodology that includes the characterization of dynamism of networked business processes, the characterization of IQ dimensions, and the exploration of IQ issues. To evaluate the practical significance of the explored IQ issues, we conduct a case study in a service ecosystem that is formed by a car leasing organization to provide integrated mobility solutions for customers.

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Presentation Uzay Kaymak: A Discussion on Process Mining in Healthcare

Uzay Kaymak

A Discussion on Process Mining in Healthcare

In recent years, process mining has been studied for a number of applications in the healthcare domain. With the increasing need to bring healthcare processes better under control, such applications have significant potential to increase the share of process-oriented care delivery. Despite the potential, the usability of the method has been limited, mainly due to the overly complex models, which have been obtained in the healthcare settings. The complexity of these models is often attributed to the complexity of the health care domain. In this presentation, we will discuss whether this is sufficient explanation and argue that many process mining methods fail to identify good process models, even for well-defined clinical environments. We identify a number of reasons for this shortcoming and discuss a few challenges for future research in process mining in healthcare.

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New Employee: Rodrigo Gonçalves

RodrigoI will have my Integrated Master’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering at ‘Instituto Superior Técnico’ in Lisbon (Portugal) by the end of September, 2015. The Master is specialized in the fields of optimization, automation and control of mechanical systems thus I have a strong background in areas such as artificial intelligence, neural networks, fuzzy systems and optimal control. I also did a one-semester international exchange with Aarhus University (Denmark) from August 2013 until February 2014, where I gained an education in a new and different way.

The aim of my MSc thesis was to provide an analysis and methodology on how to proceed when facing transportation logistic problems with high complexity. During my thesis, I faced the current huge breakdown that exists in between transportation execution and planning. At Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e), I will continue my research in the filed that I have been developing during my Master thesis. I will work as an employee of research & education in the Industrial & Innovation Sciences department.

New Employee: Bambang Suratno

bambangI took Industrial Engineering major for my bachelor degree in 2007 from Telkom University, Indonesia. After experiencing working as lead researcher in NGO and consulting firm for 4 years, I continued my study and did my master degree in 2013 majoring Industrial Engineering and Management at Bandung Institute of Technology, Indonesia. My research is in the utilization of enterprise information system for managerial benefit and explore its potential for developing knowledge management.

Currently, I am a pursuing my PhD in the Information Systems subdepartment of the School of Industrial Engineering, department of Industrial Engineering and Innovation Science, TU Eindhoven, Netherland. The general research domain of my PhD project will be ‘Support for Virtual Enterprises’, possibly covering elements from Information System Engineering, Business Process management, and Business Engineering.

Process modeling and analysis for interventional procedures in health care @Philips

The Information Systems group is often contacted by industrial organizations with assignments that could lead to student projects at various levels (master thesis project, bachelor completion project, etc.) Through this website we make these topics available to our students. In this post, we announce one such project, involving company: Philips

Process modeling and analysis for interventional procedures in health care

Primary Contacts within TU/e: Pieter Van Gorp and Uzay Kaymak

The organization

Philips is a diversified technology company, focused on improving people’s lives through meaningful innovation in the areas of Healthcare, Consumer Lifestyle and Lighting. The company is a leader in cardiac care, acute care and home healthcare, energy efficient lighting solutions and new lighting applications, as well as male shaving and grooming and oral healthcare.

This thesis relates specifically to the business unit on Interventional Cardiology solutions. Minimally invasive treatment is increasingly common in hospitals, driven by the aspiration to lower the cost for the overall healthcare system, reduce patient trauma and realize better outcomes.  Minimally invasive procedures are performed through tiny incisions instead of one large opening. Because the incisions are small, patients tend to have quicker recovery times and less discomfort than with conventional surgery.

Philips is a world leading supplier of interventional X-ray equipment in the world. With this equipment, many different types of minimally invasive procedures are supported, such as stent placement for coronary diseases, heart valve replacements, neurology and oncology procedures. For examples, see


Standardizing minimally invasive interventional procedures to improve quality of care and reduce cost becomes more and more important. To support this, Philips is innovating in gathering information on interventional procedure flows, defining standardized flows and checking compliance to standardized flows. Big data analytics techniques are also investigated for process mining such flows.

The objective for this assignment is to investigate solutions for modeling and analyzing the compliance of real-life processes for a number of minimally invasive procedures, to effectively support the health care professionals to perform such procedures. Building a (extension of an existing) prototype and evaluating it with knowledgeable stakeholders will be part of the assignment. It is expected that the main direction of the assignment will be to

  • investigate tooling to author workflow processes, also taking into account ongoing developments in Philips,
  • gain hands on expertise in state-of-the-art BPMN 2.0 compliance checking tools developed by researchers from the Information Systems group at TU/e,
  • observe real-life workflows, define process models and evaluate these with stakeholders,
  • check process compliance against available interventional procedure data,
  • improve the tool infrastructure where appropriate,
  • perform interviews with stakeholders to check usefulness of the proposed solution.


This project offers great opportunities both for a future job in industry as well as in academia. Specifically, the project is based on ongoing large scale collaborations between Philips Netherlands, Philips China, and TU Eindhoven.

Presentation Lonneke Vermeulen: Developments of Tracebook

Lonneke Vermeulen

Developments of Tracebook

Atul Gawandas’ Checklist Manifesto made the medical world realize the high potential of clinical safety checklists in reducing medical errors and improving patient safety. As the current computerized checklist support systems were too static, the Brainbridge II program (a collaboration between the Eindhoven University of Technology, Zhejiang University, Philips Research and Catharina Hospital Eindhoven) developed a system that can individualize checklists based on information from the patient’s medical record while also considering the context of the clinical workflows. In this presentation I will elaborate the developments within and around this system over the past year.

After a short introduction of the Tracebook system, I will discuss four dynamic checklists we developed in the system. During the second part of the presentation, I will discuss the first results we made within the DARTS-CSI project towards forward compliance analysis and safety managing deviations from pathways in the system.


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Several possibilities for an internship Medical Experience For Healthcare @ MEDIFY

The Information Systems group is often contacted by industrial organizations with assignments that could lead to student projects at various levels (master thesis project, bachelor completion project, etc.) Through this website we make these topics available to our students. In this post, we announce one such project, involving company:

Medify aims to improve communication standards in the medical sector by generating insight through visualization. We focus on visual engagement solutions for the healthcare, pharmaceutical and medical devices markets. We deliver in all kind of computer generated imagery (CGI) solutions, from high resolution stills and animations up to augmented reality and interactive experience solutions.


Due to the combination of our in-house developed ‘Medical Experience framework’, 3D visualization expertise and your participation, we are able to bring patient understanding to the next level. With the framework’s flexibility and toolset we are able to easily create specific interactive ‘experiences’ by changing the content (textual and audio-visual information).

The Medical Experience:

  • Improves the standard in patient communication
  • Gives insight at almost any intellectual level
  • Support patients upfront, during and after patient counselling
  • Patients can review and recall information at home
  • Patient can share information with relatives

Medical Experience set-ups are developed with patients and HCPs, generates unique link per patient for communication with the hospital, can be presented in different languages and is easy accessible as it works on all devices and browsers (HTML).


Explorative Cardiology & Urology Medical Experience screenshots

Currently we help hospitals with explorative and step-wise applications, to inform patients upfront, during and after counselling about conditions and procedures. In practice use of step-wise procedural applications resulted in:

  1. Improved patient understanding
  2. 50% up to 80% counselling time reduction

Each specific procedural experience is a patient journey to experience a treatment upfront.


Please check out our digital patient counselling experiences and the way it is used in hospitals on:

Currently our applications are used in the following hospitals:

  •  Amsterdam Academisch medisch centrum (AMC)
  • Vrije universiteit Amsterdam medisch Centrum (VUmc)
  • Medisch Centrum Alkmaar (MCA)
  • Jeroen Bosch ziekenhuis (JBZ)
  • Radboud medisch mentrum
  • Universitair medisch centrum Groningen (UMCG)
  • Onze lieve vrouwen gasthuis (OLVG)
  • Ziekenhuis Oost-Limburg (ZOL, Belgium)

The Medical Experience is seen as a successfully implemented e-health solution. We won several awards and do research continuously to improve digital counselling solutions for patients. Despite these successes we have to fight every day. Actually we just made our first steps…. It would be great if you can participate!


We do have several possibilities for an internship

  • Process optimization regarding overall application implementation process
  • Time reduction analysis for hospitals
  • Make us a NEN 7510 company

Next to your research you ask you help us with our daily business activities.


If it seems interesting for you please apply for an internship, and bring us yourself, your knowledge and ideas. Please let us know what your interest would be. Contact for more information: Rik Eshuis

De Vreelandgroep is per 1 juni op zoek naar een afstudeerder!

The Information Systems group is often contacted by industrial organizations with assignments that could lead to student projects at various levels (master thesis project, bachelor completion project, etc.) Through this website we make these topics available to our students. In this post, we announce one such project, involving company Vreelandgroep


De Vreelandgroep is per 1 juni op zoek naar een afstudeerder!


De Vreelandgroep, dat zijn 10 enthousiaste organisatieadviseurs, die zich inzetten om professionals en organisaties in de zorg beter te laten presteren. Dat doen wij op het gebied van strategie, het coachen van teams en zorglogistiek. Voorbeelden van onze logistieke projecten zijn simulatiemodellen van acute opname afdelingen, nieuwbouwtrajecten van ziekenhuizen en capaciteitsvraagstukken op poliklinieken. Voor meer informatie bekijk ons filmpje over simulatiemodellen<> of kijk op onze website<>

-       je studeert Technische Bedrijfskunde, Technische Wiskunde of een vergelijkbare studie,
-       je kunt programmeren en vindt het leuk om logistieke modellen te ontwerpen,
-       kennis van R en Plant Simulation is een pre,
-       je hebt affiniteit met de gezondheidszorg en de logistieke uitdagingen die daarmee verbonden zijn
-       je kunt zelfstandig werken en hebt goede communicatieve en sociale vaardigheden.

Je zult de opdracht (gedeeltelijk) uitvoeren bij ons op kantoor in Bilthoven. Uiteraard bieden we ook een stagevergoeding.
Ben je geïnteresseerd? Stuur dan een motivatiebrief naar ons. We zullen een kennismakingsgesprek met je voeren en samen met jou kijken naar een geschikte opdracht, afhankelijk van jouw interesses en ideeën.

Contact for more information: Rik Eshuis