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A study and comparison of industrial vs. academic software product line research published at SPLC

: Rabiser, Rick; Schmid, Klaus; Becker, Martin; Botterweck, Götz; Galster, Matthias; Groher, Iris; Weyns, Danny


Berger, T.; Borba, P.; Botterweck, G. la; Männistö, T.; Benavides, D.; Nadi, S.; Kehrer, T.; Rabiser, R.; Elsner, C.; Mukelabai, M.:
SPLC '18, Proceedings of the 22nd International Software Product Line Conference. Vol.1 : Gothenburg, Sweden, September 10 - 14, 2018
New York: ACM, 2018
ISBN: 978-1-4503-6464-5
International Systems and Software Product Line Conference (SPLC) <22, 2018, Gothenburg>
Fraunhofer IESE ()

The study presented in this paper aims to provide evidence for the hypothesis that software product line research has been changing and that the works in industry and academia have diverged over time. We analysed a subset (140) of all (593) papers published at the Software Product Line Conference (SPLC) until 2017. The subset was randomly selected to cover all years as well as types of papers. We assessed the research type of the papers (academic or industry), the kind of evaluation (application example, empirical, etc.), and the application domain. Also, we assessed which product line life-cycle phases, development practices, and topics the papers address. We present an analysis of the topics covered by academic vs. industry research and discuss the evolution of these topics and their relation over the years. We also discuss implications for researchers and practitioners. We conclude that even though several topics have received more attention than others, academic and industry research on software product lines are actually rather in line with each other.