Contradictory business rules occur in normal business situations, and maintaining rules with exceptions is a very typical example of rule conflicts. Is it possible to automatically resolve such conflicts?
In real-world of complex decision modeling, business analysts frequently face issues related to diagnostic and resolution of business rule conflicts. To avoid conflicts, business analysts have to add more and more rules making their maintenance a real problem. Today enterprise-level rule repositories achieved such a high level of maturity and internal complexity that absence of automatic conflict resolution tools will lead to unnecessary growth of rules and may potentially convert rule repositories into non-maintainable “monsters”.
At the recent BR conferences this topic was addressed by major open source BR vendors. At the DecisionCAMP-2014, Mark Proctor explained how natural rule conflicts could be addressed using the Defeasible Logic implemented within the Red Hat Drools product. At the BBC-2014 I presented a similar OpenRules approach but more oriented to business analysts – see http://www.buildingbusinesscapability.com/presentations/2014/1654.pdf.
I expect that all major BR vendors will gradually add an automatic ability to solve rule conflicts to their product offerings.