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This project proposes a new paradigm for next generation distributed systems. The new paradigm will be structured around the concept of agreement between computational agents. These agreements must be consistent with the normative context where they are established and will permit, once accepted, that the agents call for mutual services and honour them.
An entity, by the fact of being autonomous, may choose whether to fulfil an agreement or not, and it should fulfil them when there is an obligation to do so derived from the standing agreements. Autonomy, interaction, mobility and openness are the characteristics that the paradigm will cover from a theoretical and practical perspective. Semantic alignment, negotiation, argumentation, virtual organizations, learning, real time, and several other technologies will be in the sandbox to define, specify and verify such systems. Both functional and non-functional properties will be studied. Security on execution will be based on trust and reputation measures. These measures will help in the decision making of the agents to determine with whom to interact and what terms and conditions to accept. Virtual worlds technology will be explored to give high usability to the tools. Scalability will be guaranteed by the design of new algorithms for semantic alignment and through the use of electronic institutions.
The project will also build algorithms, software platforms and three demonstrators on electronic procurement, mobile health and water conflict resolution.