Noé Wysshaar and Nathalie Spicher, two students from the Master program Information Management (Wirtschaftsinformatik) from the University of Fribourg, participated in the NEMO Summer School in July 2019.  This article describes what NEMO is, talks about the content, the participants and about the experience of the two students.

NEMO Summer School

Participants from the University of Fribourg - f.l. H.-G. Fill, J. Pasquier-Rocha, N. Wysshaar, N. Spicher.

What is NEMO

NEMO Summer school is a yearly conference in Vienna organized by the Open Models Laboratory (OMiLAB) of University of Vienna, Austria since 2014 [1]. It focuses on the conceptualization, design, and implementation of Next Generation Enterprise Modelling Methods.

One way to conceptually manage complex ecosystems is by means of modelling, both in the form of theory and practice. How to define and combine modelling methods with the right level of abstraction and how to engineer corresponding modelling tools is at the centre of conceptual modelling education. The NEMO Summer School Series brings together renowned researchers and academics together with students to explore current research challenges and future development of conceptual modelling with special focus on the digital age. NEMO exposes students to a wide diversity of lectures, covering manifold aspects of conceptual modelling. It facilitates peer exchange in working groups. Besides, it supports networking in an international environment with colleagues and professors. And last but not least it encourages participants to enjoy the culture and the beautiful city of Vienna [2].

In today’s enterprises, modelling methods are widely used on every level and they are mostly supported by modelling tools. These tools ease the design of machine-processable models and provide facility services, e.g. for accessing, exchanging and persistently storing metamodels and models, for applying algorithms and querying model contents. Additionally, they enhance the value of models as organisational knowledge platforms [3].

Conceptual modelling, ADOxx
The generic modelling method framework proposed by Karagiannis and Kühn [4] comprises all the necessary ingredients for the conceptualization, i.e. early development and prototyping phases of modelling tools for domain specific modelling methods. Prototypical tool implementations applying the framework are available in the book „Domain-Specific Conceptual Modelling: Concepts, Methods and Tools“ [5].

The framework addresses

  • modelling languages - syntax, semantic and notation,
  • modelling procedures, and
  • processing based on their mechanisms and algorithms.

ADOxx is a freely available meta-modelling development and configuration platform for implementing modelling methods. It is an open infrastructure that everyone in the academia can use in order to contribute their modelling method and modelling tool.

Content of NEMO Summer School 2019
The Summer School was organized in 40 talks with many current topics such as digital transformation, blockchain, design thinking etc., 7 practical sessions, one full day with lab work and one day with student presentations. Many researchers used ADOxx as a metamodeling platform and presented their conceptual modelling language. Other talks presented robotic applications - e.g. “collaborative and well-behaved outdoor robots in harsh environment” or “Japanese creative service as a next generation enterprise modelling” [6].

NEMO Summer School

The participants of NEMO are listening to one of the conferences.


In the practical sessions, the students completed exercises using these conceptual modelling tools from the talks. For the lab work, the students were introduced to storyboards as a Design Thinking tool, where they had to model different scenes of a given Smart City problem. The next step was meant to cover the modelling language part and focus on the question “How to model concepts in a Smart City? Then, further on, the students were provided with a well-defined Smart City modelling language and had to answer the question “How to analyse Smart City models using query techniques? In the last block of the day, the students focused on “How to process Smart City models using simulation? Through the whole lab work, the students used the ADOxx platform with the built-in functionalities for Smart Cities.

Participants of NEMO 2019
Each year there are about 50 presentations from different Professors and academic staff from all around the world taking place. About 60 master students and PhD students have participated in the NEMO Summer School 2019, where 70% were PhD students and the remaining 30% were master students. NEMO has a community of more than 280 alumni and more than 80 teachers from 55 countries and 4 continents have contributed to the NEMO experience [2].

NEMO Summer School

Get-Together BBQ

Closing Words

We recommend NEMO Summer School for any students in Business Informatics and Information ystems who are interested in Modelling, Metamodeling, IS design and Enterprise Architecture. The broad variety of topics presented and the exchange of ideas after and in between lectures generates ideas for research topics, and the exchange with current students and professors can spark more ideas. NEMO gives an opportunity to meet many new people from all over the world, to discuss and to exchange ideas, to learn educationally and culturally from each other. Even after the lectures, the students explore together the city until late in the evening and during the weekend.

Thanks to this experience, new friendships can emerge from it that can last a lifetime.

N. Spicher, N. Wysshaar, October 2019

NEMO Summer School

Participants of NEMO Summer School 2019.





OMiLAB, "Next Generation Enterprise Modelling in the Digital Tranformation Age," 2019. [Online]. Available:


OMiLAB, "NEMO Summer School," 2019. [Online]. Available: [Accessed October 2019].


H.-G. Fill and D. Karagiannis, "On the Conceptualisation of Modelling Methods Using the ADOxx Meta Modelling Platform, Enterprise Modelling and Information Systems Architectures," An International Journal, vol. 8, no. Issue 1, pp. 4-25, 2013.


D. Karagiannis and H. Kühn, "Metamodelling Platform," LNCS, pp. 2455. 182. 10.1007/3-540-45705-4_19, 2002.


D. Karagiannis, H. C. Mayr and J. Mylopoulos, Domain-Specific Conceptual Modeling, Springer, 2016.


OMiLAB, "Topics and Program," 2019. [Online]. Available: [Accessed October 2019].



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