BPI Challenge 2015 — Winners and Submissions

Ube Wins BPI Challenge Award 2015

As a process miner, you need access to the process manager, or another subject matter expert, to ask questions, validate, and prioritize the analysis results that are coming up.

However, the very first step of any analysis is to explore the data and develop a first understanding of the process. Hypotheses are formed based on the questions that were defined together with the process owner in the scoping phase of the project.

This is exactly the step in a process mining project that the annual BPI Challenge allows you to practice:

  • You receive anonymized but real-life data for a process
  • You get a description of the process and some questions the process owners have about it
  • The data set is public and anyone can analyze it. In the end a winner will be chosen by the jury
  • You get feedback from the reviewers in the jury about your analysis

Even after the BPI Challenge competition is over, you can still use the data sets to practice exactly that initial analysis step in a project — And to compare your approach with the other submissions.1

But of course participating in the actual competition is much more fun. And last week, the winners of this year’s BPI Challenge were announced.

The Winners!

First of all, Irene Teinemaa, Anna Leontjeva and Karl-Oskar Masing from the University of Tartu, Estonia, won the prize for the best student submission. One of the noteworthy aspects of their work was that they used a lot of different tools. They were awarded a certificate.

Winners of the BPI Challenge 2015 Student competition

In the overall competition, Ube van der Ham from Meijer & Van der Ham Management Consultants in the Netherlands won the BPI Challenge trophy.

Trophy 2015 BPI Challenge awarded to Ube van der Ham

The jury found that Ube brought many interesting insights to light that will help the municipalities in their process improvement and collaborations.

The Trophy

Like in the past two years, the trophy was developed after an original design by the artist Felix Günther. Hand-crafted from a single piece of wood, this “log” represents the log data to be mined. The shiny rectangle represents the gold that is mined from the data and this year has the shape of the famous roof of Innsbruck, where the award ceremony for the BPI Challenge took place.

BPI Challenge Trophy 2015 (artwork by Felix Günther)

The back of the trophy still features the bark of the tree, giving the whole piece a gorgeous feel and a heavy weight.

Back side of the BPI Challenge 2015 trophy

We thank Felix for this amazing work and know that Ube was very happy about not just receiving the BPI Challenge award but the trophy itself.

All Submissions

What is great about the BPI Challenge is that you can read the different reports of all participants and compare their approaches. This is a great way to learn more about process mining in practice.

Keep in mind that nobody of the participants had the chance to ask the actual process owners questions during their analysis. So, not every result or assumption that they make was correct. Also the winner, Ube van der Ham, warns that not all observations are necessarily correct, and one of the jury members who knows the process noted some misinterpretations. And inevitably they get stuck at points, where they can only hypothesize and not make a definite statement.

However, your role as a process mining analyst in a real project is to collect your assumptions and hypotheses and then validate them with the process experts in the following process mining sessions and workshops. And you can learn a lot be looking at how other people approached this data set.

Here are all the submissions:

  1. Ube van der Ham. Benchmarking of Five Dutch Municipalities with Process Mining Techniques Reveals Opportunities for Improvement
  2. Irene Teinemaa, Anna Leontjeva and Karl-Oskar Masing. BPIC 2015: Diagnostics of Building Permit Application Process in Dutch Municipalities
  3. Liese Blevi and Peter Van den Spiegel. Discovery and analysis of the Dutch permitting process
  4. Scott Buffett and Bruno Emond. Using Sequential Pattern Mining and Social Network Analysis to Identify Similarities, Differences and Evolving Behaviour in Event Logs
  5. Prabhakar M. Dixit, Bart F.A. Hompes, Niek Tax and Sebastiaan J. van Zelst. Handling of Building Permit Applications in The Netherlands: A Multi-Dimensional Analysis
  6. Niels Martin, Gert Janssenswillen, Toon Jouck, Marijke Swennen, Mehrnush Hosseinpour and Farahnaz Masoumigoudarzi. An Exploration and Analysis of The Building Permit Application Process in Five Dutch Municipalities
  7. Josef Martens and Paul Verheul. Social Performance Review of 5 Dutch Municipalities: Future Fit Cases for Outsourcing?
  8. Jan Suchy and Milan Suchy. Process Mining techniques in complex Administrative Processes
  9. Hyeong Seok Choi, Won Min Lee, Ye Ji Kim, Jung Hoon Lee, Chun Hoe Kim, Yu Lim Kang, Na Rae Jung, Seung Yun Kim, Eui Jin Jung and Na Hyeon Kim. Process Mining of Five Dutch Municipalities’ Building Permit Application Process: The Value Added in E-Government

If you have little time, I recommend to read the winning report by Ube and the work by Liese Blevi and Peter Van den Spiegel from KPMG – a close second place. Liese and Peter take a very careful and systematic approach in understanding the log data and the process that is behind it.


  1. Take also a look at the previous years, where you can find data sets from a hospital process (2011), a loan application process (2012), an IT Service Management process from Volvo IT (2013), and a data set from the Rabobank (2014).