Abstract : High quality business workflow definitions play an important role in the organization. An incorrectly defined workflow may lead to unexpected results. Therefore, each business workflow definition should be carefully analyzed before it is put into use. In this paper, we propose an ontological approach which is suitable for ensuring the syntactic correct-ness of business workflows. In details, to represent CPNs with OWL DL, we first introduce the CPN Ontology. Then, we define axioms, which are added to the CPN Ontology to provide automated support for establishing the correctness of business workflows. Finally, by relying on the CORESE semantic engine, SPARQL queries are implemented to detect shortcomings in concrete workflows. To the best of our knowledge, this is a novel approach for the representation and verification of business workflows based on ontologies.