Call for Papers

IWPSE'2015 invites high-quality papers presenting experiments, surveys, approaches, techniques and tools related to the evolution of software systems.

4 May 2015
28 May 2015

Abstract Submission

11 May 2015
5 June 2015

Paper Submission

22 June 2015
29 June 2015

Notification of Acceptance

15 July 2015

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The 2015 edition of IWPSE will be held in Bergamo, Italy, as a co-located event of ESEC/FSE 2015, the 10th joint meeting of the European Software Engineering Conference and the ACM SIGSOFT Symposium on the Foundations of Software Engineering.

Main topic: Replication

The acceptance of empirical hypotheses should be supported by several and diverse types of replications. Replication studies make a critical evaluation of previous empirical studies for overlooked factors of the initial studies, for instance:

  • a) initial assumptions have evolved / changed / are not relevant anymore.
  • b) limited generalization, including: aspects that were previously ignored but that may affect the conclusions, conclusions that might only apply to certain types of applications, relations that have only been tested in certain types of applications but there are reasons to believe that it will not hold for other types of applications, etc.
  • c) examples of inconsistent or divergent results across studies about the same phenomena, including alternative hypotheses or differences in the experiment that could explain the divergence of results.

There are different types of replication depending on whether or not the experiment (model, variables and statistical method) and the data are the same. For instance,

  • a) Same experiment & Same data: aimed at evaluating the certainty of current knowledge (i.e., confirming or disputing previous results).
  • b) Different experiment & Same data: aimed at improving the model.
  • c) Same experiment & Different data: aimed at identifying limitations to the generality of the conclusions (or to problems with the data).

The first two types of replication are likely to be underreported due to the low contribution attributed to confirmatory results, and to their obliviousness with issues of the initial studies (either from the data or from missing variables). Nevertheless, they are crucial to understand the sensitivity of the conclusions to the variables analyzed.

We are also interested in meta-studies that analyze the replicability of empirical studies on software evolution, i.e., are all the details needed reported? at sufficient detail? to what extent original data can be reanalyzed? and to what extent the original experiment can be followed?

General call

Research in software evolution and evolvability has been thriving in the past years, with a constant stream of new formalisms, tools, techniques, and development methodologies. Research in software evolution has two goals. The first is to facilitate the way software systems can be changed so they become long-lived; this includes coping with demands from users and with the increasing complexity and volatility of contexts in which such systems may operate. The second goal is to understand and if possible control the processes by which demand for these changes come about.

Topics of interest include, but are not limited to:

  • Application areas: distributed, embedded, real-time, ultra large scale, and self-adaptive systems, web services, mobile computing, information systems, systems of systems, etc.
  • Paradigms: support and barriers to evolution in aspect-oriented, agile, component-based, and model-driven software development, service-oriented architectures,etc.
  • Technical aspects: co-evolution and inconsistency management, impact analysis and change propagation, dynamic reconfiguration and updating; architectures, tools, languages and notations for supporting evolution, etc.
  • Managerial aspects: effort and cost estimation, risk analysis, software quality, productivity, process support, training, awareness, etc.
  • Empirical studies related to software evolution.
  • Mining software repositories approaches and techniques supporting software evolution.
  • Industrial experience on successes and failures related to software evolution.
  • Interdisciplinary approaches: adaptation of evolutionary concepts and measures from other disciplines (biology, geology, etc.) to software evolution.
  • Theories and models to explain and understand software evolution.


Four types of submissions are possible (see panel on the right). All submissions must be in English and must be submitted electronically via the EasyChair submission system.

Papers must not exceed the indicated number of pages, including all text, references, appendices, and figures (submissions exceeding the page limits will be rejected by the PC Chairs without review). All accepted papers will be published by ACM as a companion volume of the ESEC/FSE 2015 conference proceedings, and made available in the ACM Digital Library. Submissions must be original work, and must not have been previously published, nor be under consideration for publication, elsewhere (see also ACM policy and procedures with respect to plagiarism). Papers must be submitted as PDF and strictly adhere to the ACM proceedings format.

Contact address for general queries: Gregorio Robles and Ángela Lozano.

Research papers should describe innovative research. Page limit: 10 pages.
Industrial papers may describe the application or adaptation of known solutions to industrial case studies, and reflect on lessons learnt. Page limit: 10 pages.
Position papers may present wild and speculative ideas, and will be judged on the potential to generate interesting discussions at the workshop. Page limit: 2 pages.
Tool papers may describe tools developed in academia or industry. The workshop will include one or more sessions for tool demos. We are particularly interested on tools that allow replication of software evolution studies. Page limit: 5 pages.

IWPSE'15 Program

Session 1: Keynote

Making Sense out of Software Engineering Data: A Few Do's and Don'ts
by Sandro Morasca (Università degli Studi dell'Insubria)

Session 2: Refactoring and Testing

Localising Faults in Test Execution Traces
Gulsher Laghari, Alessandro Murgia and Serge Demeyer

Circumventing Refactoring Masking Using Fine-Grained Change Recording
Quinten David Soetens, Javier Pérez, Serge Demeyer and Andy Zaidman

Hierarchical Categorization of Edit Operations for Separately Committing Large Refactoring Results
Jumpei Matsuda, Shinpei Hayashi and Motoshi Saeki

Session 3: APIs and Development Teams

The Driving Forces of API Evolution
John Burchell, William Granli, Imed Hammouda and Eric Knauss

The Impact of Developer Team Sizes On Internal Software Quality
Ahmmad Youssef and Andrea Capiluppi

Revisiting the Applicability of the Pareto Principle to Core Development Teams in Open Source Software Projects
Kazuhiro Yamashita, Shane Mcintosh, Yasutaka Kamei, Ahmed E. Hassan and Naoyasu Ubayashi

Session 4: Software Evolution Analysis Techniques

Software Evolution and Time Series Volatility: An Empirical Exploration
Jukka Ruohonen, Sami Hyrynsalmi and Ville Leppänen

Estimating Product Evolution Graph Using Kolmogorov Complexity
Yasuhiro Hayase, Tetsuya Kanda and Takashi Ishio

Using Control Flow Analysis to Improve the Effectiveness of Incremental Mutation Testing
Luke Bajada, Mark Micallef and Christian Colombo

Keynote by Sandro Morasca

Making Sense out of Software Engineering Data: A Few Do's and Don'ts

Using empirical evidence is now a routine part of research activities in Software Engineering. New research needs to be supported not only by proofs-of-concept, but by real empirical studies that show if new techniques are effective and to which degree. So, it is important to carry out empirical studies with some extra care, to avoid drawing the wrong conclusions from the evidence obtained.

The keynote will address the use of measures and data from both the conceptual and the practical point of view. From the conceptual point of view, the talk will show the techniques that can be used to make sure that the measures used actually make sense, their consequences, their issues, and some possible mistakes made in their use. From the practical point of view, the keynote will focus on aspects of traditional and innovative data analysis techniques, their limitations, and possible mistakes.

Biography of the Keynote Speaker

Sandro Morasca is a Professor of Computer Science at the Dipartimento di Scienze Teoriche e Applicate of the Università degli Studi dell'Insubria in Como and Varese, Italy. He was an Associate and Assistant Professor at the Politecnico di Milano in Milano and Como, Italy, and a Faculty Research Assistant and later a Visiting Scientist at the Department of Computer Science of the University of Maryland at College Park. Sandro Morasca has been actively carrying out research in Empirical Software Engineering, Software Quality, Software Verification, Open Source Software, Web Services, and Specification of Concurrent and Real-time Software Systems, and has published over 30 journal papers and over 80 conference papers. Sandro Morasca has been involved in several national and international projects and has served on the PC of a number of international Software Engineering conferences and serves on the editorial board of "Empirical Software Engineering: An International Journal," published by Springer-Verlag.


IWPSE becomes true because of the involvement of many people.

Programme Committee

  • Bram Adams, Queen’s University, Canada
  • Tom Arbuckle, University of Limerick, Ireland
  • Árpád Beszédes, University of Szeged, Hungary
  • Rafael Capilla, Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, Spain
  • Andrea Capiluppi, University of East London, UK
  • Massimiliano Di Penta, University of Sannio, Italy
  • Tamás Gergely, University of Szeged, Hungary
  • Emanuel Giger, University of Zurich, Switzerland
  • Mike Godfrey, University of Waterloo, Canada
  • Andrian Marcus, Wayne State University, USA
  • Alessandro Murgia, University of Antwerp, Belgium
  • Carlos Noguera, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium
  • Martin Pinzger, Alpen-Adria Universität, Austria
  • Denys Poshyvanyk, The College of William and Mary, USA
  • Daniel Rodriguez, The University of Alcalá, Spain
  • Mark Van Den Brand, Eindhoven University of Technology, The Netherlands
  • Michel Wermelinger, The Open University, UK
  • Andy Zaidman, Delft University of Technology, The Nertherlands

Programme Committee Chairs

  • Ángela Lozano, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium
  • Gregorio Robles, Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, Spain

Steering Committee

  • Michel Wermelinger (chair), The Open University, UK
  • Gerardo Canfora, University of Sannio, Italy
  • Andrea Capiluppi, University of East London, UK
  • Anthony Cleve, University of Namur, Belgium
  • Massimiliano di Penta, University of Sannio, Italy
  • Michele Lanza, University of Lugano, Switzerland
  • Ángela Lozano, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium
  • Kim Mens, Université Catholique de Louvain, Belgium
  • Tom Mens, University of Mons, Belgium
  • Naouel Moha, University of Québec in Montréal, Canada
  • Romain Robbes, University of Chile, Chile
  • Gregorio Robles, Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, Spain
  • Motoshi Saeki, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Japan