Our paper “PG-Triggers: Triggers for Property Graphs” accepted at SIGMOD 2024, industrial Track

Authors: Stefano Ceri, Anna Bernasconi, Alessia Gagliardi, Davide Martinenghi, Luigi Bellomarini, Davide Magnanimi

Collaboration between Politecnico di Milano and Banca d’Italia

Funding: This paper was supported by the PNRR-PE-AI FAIR project, funded by the NextGenerationEU

Abstract: Graph databases are emerging as the leading data management technology for storing large knowledge graphs; significant efforts are ongoing to produce new standards (such as the Graph Query Language, GQL), as well as enrich them with properties, types, schemas, and keys. In this article, we introduce PG-Triggers, a complete proposal for adding triggers to Property Graphs, along the direction marked by the SQL3 Standard.
We define the syntax and semantics of PG-Triggers and then illustrate how they can be implemented on top of Neo4j, one of the most popular graph databases. In particular, we introduce a syntax-directed translation from PG-Triggers into Neo4j, which makes use of the so-called APOC triggers; APOC is a community-contributed library for augmenting the Cypher query language supported by Neo4j. We also cover Memgraph, and show that our approach applies to this system in a similar way. We illustrate the use of PG-Triggers through a life science application inspired by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The main objective of this article is to introduce an active database standard for graph databases as a first-class citizen at a time when reactive graph management is in its infancy, so as to minimize the conversion efforts towards a full-fledged standard proposal.

See our preprint at https://doi.org/10.48550/arXiv.2307.07354.