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RE and Society: A Perspective on RE in Times of Smart Cities and Smart Rural Areas

: Dörr, Jörg; Hess, Anne; Koch, Matthias


Ruhe, G. ; Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers -IEEE-:
IEEE 26th International Requirements Engineering Conference, 2018 : 20-24 August 2018, Banff, Alberta, Canada. Proceedings
Piscataway, NJ: IEEE, 2018
ISBN: 978-1-5386-7418-5
ISBN: 978-1-5386-7419-2
International Requirements Engineering Conference (RE) <26, 2018, Banff>
Fraunhofer IESE ()
society; requirements engineering; rural areas; smart city; experience; challenge; living lab; future; vision

Our requirements engineering (RE) community has known for decades that the success or failure of RE methods heavily depends on the context in which they are applied. Thus, many experiences have been gained and shared in the community that reflect which RE methods are suitable for a specific context, such as embedded systems development (e.g., automotive or military domain) or information systems development (e.g., banking or flight control domain). Nowadays, in times of smart cities and their counterpart smart rural areas, where newly introduced IT systems have a strong effect on our society, a new and challenging context arises for RE, which opens up new research questions. As a contribution to this situation and to foster discussions in our community about whether our RE methods are appropriate in this new "social context", this perspective paper reflects on the state of the art and on our own experiences in applying RE in the context of smart rural areas. These results might also pertain in the context of smart cities that pose similar challenges to RE. In addition, we present a framework comprising both an initial classification of social contexts, particularly their end users, and a classification for RE methods. Example usage scenarios illustrate how this framework helps to reflect on the suitability of our RE methods, and, if necessary, provides the basis for adapting them or creating new ones. Finally, we outline a roadmap with research questions and related activities with which we want to encourage our community to perform the proposed research activities in order to enrich our body of experiences and adapt our methods to this highly relevant context.