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The secret life of a process description: A look into the evolution of a large process model

: Soto, Martin; Ocampo, Alexis; Münch, Jürgen


Wang, Q.:
Making globally distributed software development a success story. International Conference on Software Process, ICSP 2008 : Leipzig, Germany, May 10-11, 2008; Proceedings; Colocated with ICSE 2008, the 30th International Conference on Software Engineering
Berlin: Springer, 2008 (Lecture Notes in Computer Science 5007)
ISBN: 3-540-79587-1
ISBN: 978-3-540-79587-2
International Conference on Software Process (ICSP) <2008, Leipzig>
International Conference on Software Engineering (ICSE) <30, 2008, Leipzig>
Conference Paper
Fraunhofer IESE ()
process modeling; process model change; process model evolution; model comparison; V-Modell XT

Software process models must change continuously in order to remain consistent over time with the reality they represent, as well as relevant to the task they are intended for. Performing these changes in a sound and disciplined fashion requires software process model evolution to be understood and controlled. The current situation can be characterized by a lack of understanding of software process model evolution and, in consequence, by a lack of systematic support for evolving software process models in organizations. This paper presents an analysis of the evolution of a large software process standard, namely, the process standard for the German Federal Government (V-Modell® XT). The analysis was performed with the Evolyzer tool suite, and is based on the complete history of over 600 versions that have been created during the development and maintenance of the standard. The analysis reveals similarities and differences between process evolution and empirical findings in the area of software system evolution. These findings provide hints on how to better manage process model evolution in the future.