Title: Towards a repository for scientific theory: development of a technical framework and prototype based on TheoryML

Authors: Marc N. Haines, Mujtaba Ahsan

Addresses: Innograte LLC, 5049 N. Diversey Blvd., Milwaukee, WI 53217, USA. ' Kelce College of Business, Pittsburg State University, 110 Kelce, 1701 S. Broadway, Pittsburg, KS 66762, USA

Abstract: This paper proposes a markup language based on XML for the domain of scientific theory, called Theory Markup Language (TheoryML). We argue that this markup language allows structured representations of theories; has the potential to make the search for and analysis of relevant theory more effective. In the first part of the paper, the role of theory and its basic elements are discussed. This paper presents the foundations of TheoryML, the key elements of the current version and discusses recent changes, challenges and future developments. The paper further addresses the development of a prototype repository and tools that are used to capture and analyse information about scientific theories using TheoryML. Finally, issues beyond the technical definition of the markup language are addressed; including issues that are relevant for making a theory repository based on TheoryML documents a useful resource for researchers in management and other disciplines. The specification of this XML-based markup language is an essential step towards the larger goal of creating a repository for scientific theory. While the effort is initially focused on theories frequently used in management research, the framework is designed with the intention to also serve researchers in other scientific disciplines.

Keywords: extensible markup language; XML; theory markup language; TheoryML; theory development; scientific theory; data storage; data retrieval; data mining.

DOI: 10.1504/IJDMMM.2010.033539

International Journal of Data Mining, Modelling and Management, 2010 Vol.2 No.3, pp.300 - 314

Available online: 04 Jun 2010 *

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