SOCIALITE - Social-Oriented Internet of Things Architecture, Solutions and Environment. PTDC/EEI-SCR/2072/2014


Although considerable work has been done in the recent past regarding the so-called Internet of Things (IoT), most technologies and solutions for accessing real-world information are either closed, platform-specific, or application-specific. Recent efforts to define IoT reference architectures, such as IoT-A, OpenIoT, SENSEI, or FI-WARE, are important steps in the right direction, but still they lack features that are important for people-centric applications. Existing architectures can be classified as device-centric, technology-centric, service-centric or entity-centric, the latter dealing with entities such as goods, cars or people exactly in the same way. So, on one side, there is the need to define a people-centric IoT architecture that, building on existing architectures, goes beyond devices, technology, services and entities and, on the other side, develop a set of common building blocks, middleware and/or services that can be used to construct people-oriented Cyber-Physical Systems (CPS) applications, in domains including but not restricted to mHealth, social networks enhancement, and Ambient-Assisted Living (AAL), in an open and more effective way. One of the main objectives of the project is to define a first generic version of an IoT architecture that can be used for building specific solutions for each particular people-centric application domain. For instance, the instantiation of this generic architecture for the specific case of people with disabilities will comprise several components for communication, ability to add differentiated services for interfacing with different types of users (e.g., patient, caregiver, medical staff), ability to solve heterogeneity in computational capabilities, quality of service, security and privacy. Naturally, this will require the study of existing, general IoT architectures, identification of specific needs or classes of needs, and identification of challenges regarding several key aspects, such as interoperability, reliable communications, self-management, human-machine interaction, security and privacy, among other. A distinguishing aspect concerning this project is the focus on People. In this respect, the project aims to develop and explore a generic CPS/IoT architecture that can be used to support both People2People interaction and People2Thing interaction. The idea is that communication between People2People and People2Thing will be smarter, more intelligent, transparent and unobtrusive to the user, and adapted to the context of the users. This proposal will contribute to bridge the gap between IoT/CPS, in what the devices integration and management is concerned, and the beneficiaries of technologies. Furthermore, in addition to the architecture definition, the project goal is to subsequently develop middleware and services on which people-centric applications can be built. These will explore innovative technological solutions, namely those based on WSNs, mobility, and ubiquity, along with cognitive services and context-awareness, for supporting People2People interaction. Finally, the project plans to explore the developed middleware and services in people-centric contexts, with the aim of demonstrating their use in enhancing the autonomy and quality of life of citizens. In these contexts, the project aims at identifying the needs and means towards general monitoring, safety, assistance, ubiquitous location, context-awareness, autonomy, security and privacy, communication, and interaction with several target user types. These requirements will be the basis for ICT technological developments that seek to efficiently support several services and applications, adapted to and taking into account the users’ needs. For this, a set of service components offering clear APIs will be developed, on which application can be built. These include basic service components, cognitive services, and context awareness. Moreover, a set of application profiles will be identified, with the objective of allowing flexible service compositions that can be used in a variety of people-centric scenarios for quickly developing applications. A distinguishing aspect of the SOCIALITE project is that it adopts a comprehensive view of Smart Cyber-Physical Systems and their use in the context of people to people interactions. This means that the project will explore three complementary lines of research - concept, platform and applications – taking advantage of the expertise of the involved CISUC groups. With respect to the former, the resulting architecture will represent a clear advancement of the state-of-the-art, as it will enable the development of a middleware and services platform with high potential impact in terms of target user communities and developers. In what concerns applications, it is expected that they will make technology use as intuitive, transparent and invisible as possible, allowing users to focus on the applications themselves, thus improving acceptance. ACKNOWLEDGEMENT: SOCIALITE is co-financed by COMPETE 2020, Portugal 2020 - Operational Program for Competitiveness and Internationalization (POCI), European Union’s ERDF (European Regional Development Fund), and the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT).


Funded by

FCT - project PTDC/EEI-SCR/2072/2014



Total budget

194 836,00 €

Local budget

194 836,00 €


Internet of Things, cyber-physical systems, people-centric solutions, context awareness, cognitive systems

Start Date


End Date


Journal Articles


(4 publications)


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(1 publication)

Conference Articles


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(7 publications)


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Tech Report