An Ontology Driven Question Answering System for fatawa retrieval

Keltoum Benlaharche, Zakaria Laboudi, Nabila Nouaouria, Djamel Eddine Zegour


This work aims to propose a system for the Algerian Fatawa House in order to facilitate the task of the Expert Mufti who is responsible of giving fatawa for Algerian people inquiries. In fact, as this house is recent and does not have sufficient human resources, it is difficult to satisfy all inquiries coming daily; this leads the asker to wait for a long time before getting answers. The proposed system allows the asker to express concerns they may have. By using a case-based reasoning mechanism combined with ontology domain, the system tries to retrieve similar cases from the knowledge base. In the case where the response already exists, the system immediately provides the answer to the asker. Otherwise, an inquery is automatically formulated and sent to the Expert Mufti – which is a certified scholar – in order either to validate the generated response by the system or give a new answer. Such a question-answering system may be very helpful for asker to get their answers faster since it allows both the storage of previous fatawas and their retrieval for processing coming inquiries. To validate our proposal, we rely on fatawas concerning the Islamic finance and banking transactions domain. Overall, the results are encouraging and satisfactory.


Question answering systems; Fatwa support; Information retrieval; Case Based- Reasoning; Domain Ontology; Expert Mufti


A. H. Ghazali, al-Moustasfâ min ’Ilm al-OUssoul, Dar El Koutoub El Ilmia. 2000.

R. G. C. Rocha, R. R. Azevedo, Y. C. Sousa, E. de A. Tavares, and S. Meira, “A Case-based Reasoning System to Support the Global Software Development,” Procedia Computer Science, vol. 35, pp. 194–202, 2014, doi: 10.1016/j.procs.2014.08.099.

S. A. Diwan, “Proposed study on evaluating and forecasting the resident property value based on specific determinants by case base reasoning and artificial neural network approach,” Indonesian Journal of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, vol. 17, no. 3, Art. no. 3, Mar. 2020, doi: 10.11591/ijeecs.v17.i3.pp1467-1473.

H. Amari, F. Atil, N. Bounour, and N. Nouaouria, “intelligent tool for mufti assistance 2015.pdf,” International Journal on Islamic Applications in Computer Science And Technology, vol. 3, no. 2, pp. 1–9, Jun. 2015.

I. Elhalwany, A. Mohammed, K. Wassif, and H. Hefny, “using textual case based reasoning in intelligent fatawa QA system.pdf.” The International Arab Journal of Information Technology, Vol. 12, No. 5, Sep. 2015.

S. Tongphu, B. Suntisrivaraporn, and P. Aimmanee, “Toward Semantic Similarity Measure Between Concepts in An Ontology,” Indonesian Journal of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, vol. 14, no. 3, pp. 1356–1372, 2019.

A. Ansari, M. Maknojia, and A. Shaikh, “Intelligent question answering system based on Artificial Neural Network,” 2016 IEEE International Conference on Engineering and Technology (ICETECH), 2016, doi: 10.1109/ICETECH.2016.7569350.

A. C. O. Reddy and K. Madhavi, “Hierarchy based firefly optimized K-means clustering for complex question answering,” Indonesian Journal of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, vol. 17, no. 1, Art. no. 1, Jan. 2020, doi: 10.11591/ijeecs.v17.i1.pp264-272.

M. A. Calijorne Soares and F. S. Parreiras, “A literature review on question answering techniques, paradigms and systems,” Journal of King Saud University - Computer and Information Sciences, vol. 32, no. 6, pp. 635–646, Jul. 2020, doi: 10.1016/j.jksuci.2018.08.005.

N. Alam, Islamic finance, 1st edition. New York, NY: Springer Berlin Heidelberg, 2017.

D. B. Leake, Case-based reasoning. John Wiley and Sons Ltd., 2003.

M. C. Suárez-Figueroa, “NeOn Methodology for Building Ontology Networks: Specification, Scheduling and Reuse,” phd, Facultad de Informática (UPM), 2010.

D. Gaševic, D. Djuric, and V. Devedžic, Model Driven Engineering and Ontology Development. Springer Science & Business Media, 2009.

F. S. Utomo, N. Suryana, and M. S. Azmi, “New instances classification framework on Quran ontology applied to question answering system,” TELKOMNIKA (Telecommunication Computing Electronics and Control), vol. 17, no. 1, Art. no. 1, Feb. 2019, doi: 10.12928/telkomnika.v17i1.9794.

D. Patterson, N. Rooney, M. Galushka, V. Dobrynin, and E. Smirnova, “SOPHIA-TCBR: A knowledge discovery framework for textual case-based reasoning,” Knowledge-Based Systems, vol. 21, no. 5, pp. 404–414, Jul. 2008, doi: 10.1016/j.knosys.2008.02.006.

K. Benlaharche and N. Nouaouria, “Ontology based Similarity for Case Based Reasoning in Islamic Banking,” International Journal on Islamic Applications in Computer Science And Technology, vol. 6, no. 2, Oct. 2019, Accessed: Jan. 22, 2020. [Online]. Available:

V. K and K. Nk, “Effective Feature Set Selection and Centroid Classifier Algorithm for Web Services Discovery,” Indonesian Journal of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, vol. 5, no. 2, Art. no. 2, Feb. 2017, doi: 10.11591/ijeecs.v5.i2.pp441-450.

A. Mamadolimova et al., “Semantic-based Multilingual Islamic Finance Thesaurus,” Barcelona, Spain, Jan. 2014, pp. 44–50.

M. C. Suárez-Figueroa, A. Gómez-Pérez, and M. Fernández-López, “The NeOn Methodology framework: A scenario-based methodology for ontology development,” Applied Ontology, vol. 10, no. 2, pp. 107–145, Jan. 2015, doi: 10.3233/AO-150145.

K. Benlaharche and N. Nouaouria, “towards reference ontology for islamic finance and banking,” presented at the International Conference On Information & Communication Technology for the Muslim world 2018, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Jul. 2018.

I. Watson, Applying Case-Based Reasoning: Techniques for Enterprise Systems, 1 edition. San Francisco, Calif: Morgan Kaufmann, 1997.

J. Kolodner, Case-based reasoning. San Francisco, CA, USA: Morgan Kaufmann Publishers Inc., 1993.

N. Nouaouria, F. Atil, M. T. Laskri, D. Bouyaya, and A. H. Amari, “A CASE BASED TOOL AS INTELLIGENT ASSISTANCE TO MUFTI,” The Arabian Journal for Science and Engineering, vol. 31, no. 1B, pp. 75–87, 2006.

I. Elhalwany, A. Mohammed, K. T. Wassif, and H. A. Hefny, “Enhancements to knowledge discovery framework of SOPHIA textual case-based reasoning,” Egyptian Informatics Journal, vol. 15, no. 3, pp. 211–220, Nov. 2014, doi: 10.1016/j.eij.2014.10.002.




  • There are currently no refbacks.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

shopify stats IJEECS visitor statistics