AUT - Process Modelling, Assessment and Improvement

AUT

Process Modelling, Assessment and Improvement

Process Modelling, Assessment and Improvement at Software Engineering Research LaboratoryOur work in this theme considers the ‘who, what, when, why and how’ of software development and management. We are especially interested in considering how software processes fit organisational contexts, the degree to which practices can or should match process principles, and developing models and methods to enable software organisations and individuals to improve their work.

Some of this work is quite speculative, considering metaphors and models from other disciplines that could help us to better understand the complex nature of software systems development. Other projects are more contemporary, considering the impact of specific methods or tools on the effectiveness of developer teams and individuals. In terms of research method, work ranges from the conceptual – proposing new models – through to the constructive – building new tools.

Contact Prof. Stephen MacDonell for more information on work in this theme.

Example Projects

Process Support Using Variables of Interest
Existing software process models are characterised by unstated assumptions, which means that we cannot easily compare models or transfer data from one model to another. As a result, software planners have no mechanism for selecting process activities that are best suited to individual projects. Dr Diana Kirk is leading the development of a framework for modelling software processes that supports representation and comparison of different kinds of software process. Our framework is based on a lift in focus from ‘choosing activities’ to ‘identifying project objectives and selecting activities to meet those objectives’.

Related publication:
Kirk, D.C, MacDonell, S.G., & Tempero, E. (2009) Modelling software processes - a focus on objectives, in Proceedings of the Onward!2009 Conference. Orlando FL, USA, ACM Press, pp.941-948.

Supporting Agile Projects
MCIS student Sherlock Licorish designed and developed a tool to assist managers working on agile software projects to more effectively  allocate individuals to roles and teams based on their personal strengths and characteristics, and to engage the customer as an active member of the team even if they were not actually on site at all times.

Download the thesis

Related publication:
Licorish, S., Philpott, A., & MacDonell, S.G. (2009) Supporting agile team composition: a prototype tool for identifying personality (in)compatibilities, in Proceedings of the ICSE Workshop on Cooperative and Human Aspects of Software Engineering (CHASE). Vancouver BC, Canada, IEEE Computer Society Press, pp.66-73.

Other Current Projects

Building a fuzzy logic toolset for software project management. Prof. Stephen MacDonell, Dr Diana Kirk, Jim Buchan, Rob Fallwell, Lois Dai

New metaphors suitable for considering the development, deployment and management of future software systems. Prof. Stephen MacDonell, Dr Diana Kirk

Observing and predicting the evolution of software systems. Prof. Stephen MacDonell, Dr Tony Clear, Dr Andy Connor, Dr Diana Kirk, Jim Buchan

Projects Available

Projects at Software Engineering Research LaboratoryLean principles and practices in software development

Portfolio risk management for smaller software projects

Project manager knowledge codification

Manager/developer influence on project planning and execution

Modelling processes and systems using system dynamics and simulation

Theme Papers

McLeod, L., & MacDonell, S.G. (Accepted, In Press) Factors that affect software systems development project outcomes: a survey of research, ACM Computing Surveys, pp.TBC.

Kirk, D., & MacDonell, S. (2009) A simulation framework to support software project (re)planning, in Proceedings of the 35th Euromicro Software Engineering and Advanced Applications (SEAA) Conference. Patras, Greece, IEEE Computer Society Press, pp.285-292.

Kirk, D., & MacDonell, S. (2009) A systems approach to software process improvement in small organisations, in Proceedings of the 16th European Software Process Improvement and Innovation (EuroSPI) Conference. Alcala, Spain, Delta/Publizon, pp.2.21-30.

Licorish, S., Philpott, A., & MacDonell, S.G. (2009) A prototype tool to support extended team collaboration in agile project feature management, in Proceedings of the International Conference on Software Engineering Theory and Practice (SETP-09). Orlando FL, USA, ISRST, pp.105-112.

McLeod, L., MacDonell, S.G., & Doolin, B. (2009) IS development practice in New Zealand organisations, Journal of Research and Practice in Information Technology 41(1), pp.29-50.

MacDonell, S.G., Kirk, D., & McLeod, L. (2008) Raising healthy software systems, in Proceedings of the Fourth International ERCIM Workshop on Software Evolution and Evolvability at the 23rd IEEE/ACM International Conference on Automated Software Engineering. L'Aquila, Italy, IEEE Computer Society Press, pp.21-24.

McLeod, L., MacDonell, S.G., & Doolin, B. (2007) User participation in contemporary IS development: an IS management perspective, Australasian Journal of Information Systems 15(1), pp.113-136.

McLeod, L., MacDonell, S.G., & Doolin, B. (2007) Standard method use in contemporary IS development: an empirical investigation, Journal of Systems and Information Technology 9(1), pp.6-29.

MacDonell, S.G., & Gray, A.R. (2005) The viability of fuzzy logic modeling in software development effort estimation: opinions and expectations of project managers, International Journal of Software Engineering and Knowledge Engineering 15(5), pp.893-918.

McLeod, L., MacDonell, S.G., & Doolin, B. (2004) An empirical investigation into IS development practice in New Zealand, in Proceedings of the 15th Australasian Conference on Information Systems (ACIS 2004). Hobart, Australia, ACIS, pp. on CD-ROM.

MacDonell, S.G., Fletcher, T., & Wong, B.L.W. (1999) Industry practices in project management for multimedia information systems, International Journal of Software Engineering and Knowledge Engineering 9(6), pp.801-815.

Gray, A.R., & MacDonell, S.G. (1999) Two surveys of software development project managers' use of and attitudes towards modeling techniques, in Proceedings of the ICONIP'99/ANZIIS'99/ANNES'99/ACNN'99 International Workshop on Future Directions for Intelligent Systems and Information Sciences. Dunedin, New Zealand, University of Otago, pp.229-234.

Gray, A.R., & MacDonell, S.G. (1999) Membership function extraction from software development project managers, in Proceedings of the ICONIP'99/ANZIIS'99/ANNES'99/ACNN'99 International Workshop on Future Directions for Intelligent Systems and Information Sciences. Dunedin, New Zealand, University of Otago, pp.235-240.

Gray, A.R., & MacDonell, S.G. (1999) Fuzzy logic for software metric models throughout the development life-cycle, in Proceedings of the Annual Meeting of the North American Fuzzy Information Processing Society (NAFIPS'99). New York NY, IEEE Computer Society Press, pp.258-262.

MacDonell, S.G., Gray, A.R., & Calvert, J.M. (1999) FULSOME: Fuzzy logic for software metric practitioners and researchers, in Proceedings of the Sixth International Conference on Neural Information Processing (ICONIP'99/ANZIIS'99/ANNES'99/ACNN'99). Perth, Australia, IEEE Computer Society Press, pp.308-313.

MacDonell, S.G., Gray, A.R., & Calvert, J.M. (1999) FUZZYMANAGER: a teaching and introductory environment for fuzzy logic and fuzzy clustering, in Proceedings of the ICONIP'99/ANZIIS'99/ANNES'99/ACNN'99 International Workshop on Future Directions for Intelligent Systems and Information Sciences. Dunedin, New Zealand, University of Otago, pp.197-202.

MacDonell, S.G., Gray, A.R., & Calvert, J.M. (1999) FULSOME: a fuzzy logic modeling tool for software metricians, in Proceedings of the Annual Meeting of the North American Fuzzy Information Processing Society (NAFIPS'99). New York NY, IEEE Computer Society Press, pp.263-267.

Last updated: 14-Feb-2014 7.01pm

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