Special Issue on Software Engineering from a Social Network Perspective

Pernille Bjørn is acting as co-editor in a special issue on Software Engineering from a Social Network Perspective, by SpringerOpen Journal of Internet Services and Applications (JISA).


In today’s Internet age, the concept of social networks is emerging as both a useful means for understanding software engineering activities and a key principle for designing software tools. Social networks model how people communicate, coordinate, cooperate, and develop professional relationships, which are critical activities for a software development project. Bringing social networks to the foreground of software development practice brings a focus to its stakeholders, including developers, their managers, their support staff, QA analysts, requirement engineers, and even end users. Social networks include investigation of both the social organization of the work as well as the technical information infrastructures. The concept also helps explore the notion of network-centric organizations that are required to deal with socio-technical dependencies – including handling the relations and connections between complex software code, systems and subsystems, requirement and specification documents, etc.

The structure of the social organization often dictates the technical structure of the product, as stated in Conway’s Law, and is a topic of ongoing research. Researchers are investigating the interplay of complex interdependencies among technical artifacts and the people who create and maintain these artifacts. Others have examined the relationships between the stakeholders based on qualitative studies and have been developing software tools to support awareness and trust in global software development. As a last example, researchers have been studying the effects of companies moving from hierarchical to network-centric ways of organizing the work and looking to leverage expertise within companies.

However, the roles and practices involved with social networks within software development as well as the technical challenges of social network technologies within software development are yet to be further explored. Thus, we seek submissions that employ the concept of social networks either in studying software development from an empirical approach or use the concept as a central basis for developing software tool support, or do both! We seek submissions that investigate how social network technologies are currently being enacted by software development practitioners, and how the technology-in-use practices emerges. Current research on social network in software engineering is spread across a diverse set of research subareas, and we want to bring in this diverse set of approaches into this special issue. We encourage authors to specifically discuss the definition and background of their particular use of social networks in their work, as well as how the concept was beneficial for exploring software development practices and/or how designing collaborative technologies for software development.


Topics include but are not limited to the following:

–  Data mining for social networks in software repositories

–  Understanding software evolution from a social network perspective

–  Social network analysis for enhancing specific aspects of software engineering, such as bug prediction, expert recommendation, etc.

–  Tools for supporting researchers and practitioners in analyzing social networks in software projects and ecosystems

–  Socio-technical networks in software development

–  Enactment of social networks in software development

–  Communication practices in social networks in software development

–  Coordination practices and organization structure as they relate to social network

–  Information and knowledge sharing in social networks

–  Interactions between awareness, visualization, and social networks

–  The role of trust in software development as enacted in social networks

–  Social networks analysis in open source software projects and ecosystems

–  Large scale analysis of social networks in software ecosystems

–  Patterns and anti-patterns in social networks in software development

–  New requirements for supporting social network infrastructure, such as middleware, frameworks, and cloud computing environments

–  Technologies-in-use practices of social network within software development organizations


JISA is an international Open Access journal published by Springer. Several bases index the journal, such as SCOPUS, INSPEC, Academic OneFile, DBLP, DOAJ, EI-Compendex, OCLC, SCImago, and Summon by Serial Solutions. JISA adopts the Open Access policy, allowing free access to the papers. We have *fee waivers* to assure that all quality articles will be published, regardless of the funding capacity of the authors. Please, enter in touch if you are interested in a fee waiver.

Manuscripts are submitted online as described in http://www.jisajournal.com/manuscript. There is no minimum or maximum length imposed on papers, but a typical length is around 15 pages in the Springer template format. Reviewers will weigh the contribution of a paper relative to its length. Thus, papers should report research thoroughly but succinctly.

This is the second independent cycle of submission. The journal will publish the papers as soon as they are ready, thus all authors are welcome do submit. Enter in contact if you need additional time.

– Deadline for submissions: October 15, 2014.

– Author’s notifications: December 8, 2014.

Read more about the special issue on NexGSDs website

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