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Open Energy Family - Open Energy Ontology (OEO)

Developing a common ontology for energy system analysis and scenarios.


The Open Energy Ontology (OEO) is a domain ontology of the energy-system modelling context. It is developed as part of the Open Energy Family. The OEO is published on github as open source software. The language used is the Manchester OWL Syntax, which was chosen because it is user-friendly for editing and viewing diffs of edited files. The OEO is constantly being extended. The first version of the Open Energy Ontology (OEO) has been released on June 11th 2020. A steering committee was created to accompany the development, increase awareness of the ontology and include it in current projects.

Scope of this ontology

This domain ontology is a joint effort to represent the energy-system modelling context based on standard terminologies used by human experts in this field of research. It is designed to improve transparency and facilitate comparability & transferability within the energy system modelling context. This ontology makes use of the Basic Formal Ontology (BFO) and its principles. It re-uses several other ontologies as described in the wiki.

License / Copyright

This repository is licensed under CC0 1.0 Universal (CC0 1.0) Public Domain Dedication License: CC0-1.0


The released version of the ontology can be downloaded from or directly from github.

The currently developed version is available on GitHub:

To open the ontology the program Protégé is recommended.

The complete ontology is found under src/ontology/oeo.omn. The OEO-owned modules can be seen in the src/ontology/edits folder, and imported modules are under src/ontology/imports.

Contributing and developing

This is an interdisciplinary, open source project, help is always appreciated!

The development of the ontology happens mainly on GitHub and is supplemented by (online) developer meetings to review the progress and discuss more complicated topics.

If you're new to GitHub or ontologies check out our how-to-help article for some first advice and helpful links.

Please read the wiki for information about the ontology, its standards, its best practice principles and on BFO classification.

The workflow is described in the file. Please check it out before you start working on this project. Points that are not clear in the file can be discussed in a GitHub issue.


Experts in ontology engineering, economy and energy-system modelling work together collaboratively. We combine domain knowledge with knowledge about how an ontology should be designed.

If you have a specific question about ontology design, energy system modelling or economy (in context of this ontology), you can tag one of these teams (or persons) to notify its members that you need their feedback or help.

The OEO is organised in an general team:

and several subteams: