Keynote Speakers

We are thrilled to be hosting the following three keynotes at this year's conference:

Requirements engineering and safety

Speaker: Nancy Leveson, Massachusetts Institute of Technology


While reliability has been a concern for software and engineering for a long time, the increasing use of software in the control of complex, safety-critical systems is creating new problems that require new solutions. New models and understanding of the role that software plays in accidents is needed to make progress. In this talk, I will describe my view of the new problems that need to be solved and some potential paths to the solution.

Speaker Bio:

Dr. Nancy Leveson has worked in the field of system safety for 30 years. Currently she is Professor of Aeronautics and Astronautics and also Professor of Engineering Systems at MIT. She is an elected member of the National Academy of Engineering (NAE) and has received many awards such as the ACM Allen Newell Award for outstanding computer science research, the AIAA Information Systems Award for "developing the field of software safety and for promoting responsible software and system engineering practices where life and property are at stake," and the ACM Sigsoft Outstanding Research Award. She has published over 200 research papers and is author of a book, Safeware: System Safety and Computers, published by Addison-Wesley and recently translated into Japanese and a new book Engineering a Safer World published by MIT Press in January 2012.

Mobile and Agile: Why can't they get along?

Speaker: Steve Fickas, University of Oregon
Recording of the talk


My group has had success using requirements elicitation methods as part of an agile process. For us, incremental requirements engineering fits well with incremental design. However, we have hit a roadblock when the focus turns to mobile applications; it is unrealistic to attempt frequent incremental field-tests. So it would seem that mobile and agile are at odds.

In this talk I will discuss an attempt to break out of the field-test bind for mobile applications. We have begun to look at simulation technology that has potential to support frequent and incremental changes without the headache of going to the field. Our simulation starting-point is relatively cheap and simple game engines. We have made some progress that I will report on. I will also place this work in the larger context of past research on specification and requirements simulation.

Speaker Bio:

Stephen Fickas is a Full Professor of Computer and Information Science at the University of Oregon. He has held visiting faculty positions at the Oregon Health Sciences University and Cambridge University. He was awarded a Fulbright Fellowship to support collaboration with faculty at the Hungarian Academy of Sciences.

His research interests include Personal and Contextual Requirements Engineering (PCRE). His co-authored paper on PCRE won best paper award at RE05. His paper with Martin Feather on requirements monitoring at RE95 was recognized as most influential at RE05.

Professor Fickas was General Chair of both RE93 and ICSE09. He is co- founder with Anthony Finkelstein of the International Federation for Information Processing (IFIP) Working Group 2.9 on Software Requirements Engineering.

Is the industry just getting rid of requirements?

Speaker: Chris Rupp, SOPHIST


If one takes a look at the hype about agile process models like Scrum and the minimal share of RE contained in these process models, one could get the impression that RE will soon cease to exist.

Is this impression correct?

On the contrary, our practical experience from industry shows a picture that is completely different!

The conditions that speak for a well thought-out RE are perpetually increasing:
  • Systems become more and more extensive (more complex and more complicated)
  • The number of systems in companies and their networking abilities increase continuously
  • The share of software and its integration into products is also continuously increasing
  • The network of contractual relationships increases (client/contractor/sub- contractor)
  • Systems become more and more critical and proceed farther and farther into safety-critical areas
  • The globalization in system development increases (Nearshoring/ Offshoring)
  • Domain-specific knowledge is hidden in existing predecessor systems (only)
  • Existing systems without documentation are meant to be expanded
  • Release cycles keep getting shorter
  • Using product lines and product families as well as the utilization of reuse are gaining in significance.

To become aware of these fundamental conditions and to use the right methods and techniques is the key to project success.

The lecture shows approaches that have become part of the industrial practice of companies. Furthermore it presents the subject areas in which new solution attempts from the scientific community would be more than welcome.

Speaker Bio:

Head SOPHIST (officially: founder and CEO), chief consultant, coach and trainer. After 20 years of active involvement in the field of systems engineering I have gathered quite a nice collection: a company ... 6 books ... 40 employees ... innumerable articles and lectures ... and a lot of experience. This is presumably due to my passion for consulting - I've not only been managing personnel, challenging them and helping them develop their strengths, but I have also actively stayed in touch with the customer by working in and leading projects. It might also be due to a talent to gather the right team members around me. The vision that drives me is to put good ideas into practice in a way that gives developers, contract partners and users the certainty that they are dealing with a valuable, elaborate and beneficial product.

Personal interests:

As a private person, the following three areas of interest fascinate me most:
  • Arts: I'm into photography and painting. I work as a conceptual artist and exhibit together with others and visit a lot of art exhibitions. You will get a closer impression by visiting my website
  • People: I love to have a chat with friends or do something together.
  • Sports: I mainly like to indulge in going jogging, snowboarding and kiteboarding.