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International Semantic Web Working Symposium (SWWS)
July 30 - August 1, 2001, Stanford, CA

Symposium Organizers

Isabel F. Cruz
University Illinois at Chicago
Stefan Decker
Stanford University
Jérôme Euzenat
INRIA, France
Deborah L. McGuinness
Stanford University

The Semantic Web is a vision: the idea of having data on the Web defined and linked in a way that it can be used by machines not just for display purposes, but for automation, integration and reuse of data across various applications. In order to make this vision a reality for the Web, supporting standards, technologies and policies must be designed to enable machines to make more sense of the Web, with the result of making the Web more useful for humans.

The technical program of the International Semantic Web Working Symposium (SWWS) presented the state of the art in the development of the principles and technology that will allow for the Semantic Web to become a reality. There were two invited talks, one by Eric Miller (W3C Semantic Web activity lead) and the other one by Michel Biezunski and Steven Newcomb (co-editors of the ISO Topic Map norm), and one panel chaired by Vipul Kashyap of Telcordia on Emerging Semantics. There were also 35 full papers selected from 58 submissions, by a Program Committee of 36 people. The papers were organised in three tracks: "Ontology and Ontology Maintenance", chaired by Deborah McGuinness and Mark Tuttle, "Interoperability, Integration, and Composition", chaired by Vipul Kashyap, and "Services and Applications", chaired by Jim Hendler and Sheila McIlraith. A tutorial track was chaired by Charles Petrie, which featured tutorials by Natalya Friedman-Noy (on Ontology Engineering), Christoph Bussler (on Semantic B2B Integration), Fabio Casati and Ming-Chien Shan (on Models and Languages for Describing and Discovering E-services). The track chairs have summarized in reports the lessons learned from the various presentations and from the discussions among the participants of the various tracks, thus demonstrating that the symposium was a rich working forum. In addition, there were about 50 position papers that have also been included in the proceedings.

While originally SWWS was planned for an attendance of 100, it actually gathered more than 245 participants from all over the world, encompassing a wide range of scientific backgrounds. The interest that was demonstrated from a highly technical participation from academia and industry demonstrates the emergence of a dynamic and vital community centered on the idea of a Semantic Web.

During the symposium, a steering committee was established for monitoring future editions. A second edition has been planned for Europe next year, under the name International Semantic Web Conference (Sardinia, June 10-12, 2002).

For further information: See the working symposium web site at and the final report web site, which includes the reports by the chairs of the working tracks, at

* This working symposium was supported by the National Science Foundation under grant IIS-0120811 (Information and Data Management Program). Additional support was provided by the European IST OntoWeb network, by the DARPA (DAML program), and by several corporate sponsors. All opinions, findings, conclusions, and recommendations in any material resulting from this symposium are those of its participants, and do not necessarily reflect the view of the sponsoring agencies.