Title: Global Software Development: Criteria for Intelligent Choices

Large software systems are frequently developed in a distributed fashion.
Buzz-words include global software development, out-sourcing, or off-shoring.
Mostly the sole criterion for choosing remote development sites is minimal cost per developer hour. It is long been known that this sole criterion leads to many project failures, and that a multiplicity of factors needs to be optimized.
Minimizing development costs does neither imply minimal overall life-time costs nor customer satisfaction.

In this presentation, I motivate the need for using multiple criteria for making remote development site decisions, present the results from an international survey regarding enabling and prohibiting factors for global software development projects, outline a first prototype decision making tool, and provide visions regarding its use.


(H. Dieter Rombach)

Dr. H. Dieter Rombach is a Full Professor in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Kaiserslautern, Germany. He holds a chair in software engineering, is executive and founding director of the Fraunhofer Institute for Experimental Software Engineering (IESE), and chairs the Fraunhofer ICT group, which aims at shortening the time needed for transferring research technologies into industrial practice. IESE employs about 180 scientists, operates a sister institute at the University of Maryland, USA (about 25 scientists), and finances about 75% of its operating budget via industry projects. His research interests are in software methodologies, modeling and measurement of the software process and resulting products, software reuse, and distributed systems. Results are documented in more than 180 publications in international journals and conference proceedings. He is co-author of the book entitled “A Handbook of Software and Systems Engineering: Empirical Observations, Laws and Theories” published by Addison Wesley in 2003.

Prior to his current position, Dr. Rombach held faculty positions with the Computer Science Department and UMIACS (University of Maryland Institute for Advanced Computer Studies) at the University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland [1984-1991] and was a member of the SEL (Software Engineering Laboratory, a joint venture between NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, Computer Sciences Corporation, and the University of Maryland) [1986-1991]. In 2003, he received the Distinguished Postdoctoral Award from the University of Maryland, College Park, MD, USA.

He received his B.S. degree in mathematics from the University of Karlsruhe, Germany, in 1975, his M.S. degrees in mathematics and computer science from the University of Karlsruhe, Germany in 1978, and his Ph.D. degree in computer science from the University of Kaiserslautern, Germany, in 1984. In 1990, he received the prestigious Presidential Young Investigator Award (US$ 500,000.00) from the National Science Foundation, USA, in recognition of his research accomplishments in software engineering. In 2000, he was awarded the Service Medal of the State of Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany, for his accomplishments in software engineering research and his contributions to the economic development of the state through the establishment of a Fraunhofer institute. Since 2003, he has been serving as a member of the Software Process Achievement (SPA) Awards Committee of Carnegie Mellon University’s Software Engineering Institute.

Dr. Rombach heads several research projects funded by the German government, the European Union, and industry. He currently is the lead principal of a federally funded project (ViSEK) aimed at building up a German repository of knowledge about innovative software engineering technologies. He provides consulting to numerous companies on issues including quality improvement, software measurement, software reuse, process modeling, and software technology in general, and he is an advisor to the federal and state governments on ICT issues. He frequently gives industrial executive seminars on software quality improvement, software measurement, software reuse, and process modeling. He was Co-Guest-Editor of two Special Issues in IEEE Software, on Software Quality Assurance in September 1987 and Measurement-Based Process Improvement in July 1994, respectively, and organized the International Workshop on Experimental Software Engineering Issues in Dagstuhl, Germany, in September 1992. He served as General Chair of the 18th International Conference on Software Engineering in Berlin in 1996, and as program co-chair for ICSE 2006 in Shanghai, China. He is an associate editor for both the Kluwer Journal "Empirical Software Engineering" and “ACM TOSEM” and serves on the editorial boards of numerous other journals and magazines (e.g., IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering, ACM Transactions on Software Engineering Methods, and IEE International Journal on Software Process). He serves on several international advisory boards for international research centers, e.g., Lero in Ireland, Simula Research Lab in Norway, CESE in USA, and NICTA in Australia. He is a member of GI and ACM, and a Fellow of IEEE.                          

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Page last updated: 18/11/2009