Corresponding author: Artur Freitas, Postal Code 90619-900, Av. Ipiranga, 6681 - Porto Alegre, Brazil. Tel.: +55-51-3320-3500; E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Note:  Accepted by: Roberta Ferrario
Abstract: Model-driven engineering provides abstractions and notations to improve the understanding and to support modeling, coding, and verification of applications for specific domains. Ontologies, on the other hand, provide formal and explicit definitions of shared conceptualizations and enable the use of semantic reasoning. Although these areas have been developed by different communities, significant synergy can be achieved when both are combined. These advantages can be explored in the development of multi-agent systems, given their complexity and the need for integrating several components that are often addressed from different angles. This work investigates how to apply ontologies for agent-oriented software engineering. Initially, we present a new modeling approach where multi-agent systems are designed by instantiating our proposed ontology. An additional contribution is a tool that uses instantiated ontological designs to generate programming code for such systems. Several advantages can be obtained from the application of our ontology-based approach, in terms of specification, development, and verification of agent-oriented software, as indicated by the experiments we have carried out.