The scope of the IOF is quite large and there will be many ontologies needed to meet the goals of the IOF. In order to facilitate a coherent and consistent development it is expected that there will be multiple ‘layers’ of ontologies where the ‘upper layers’ make use of the ‘lower layers’.  

The roles of the Top-down Working Group are

  1. To control the development of different ontologies in the architecture.  The IOF architecture is shown below.
  2. Formalize common core concepts and their notation.
  3. Ensure application of best practices for ontology development.

Hierarchy of ontologies in the IOF architecture