Orchestration in Contemporary Software Development Ecosystems

This special issue call for papers welcomes contributions that have the potential to provide insight on the orchestration of software development in contemporary digital ecosystems. The past decade has seen tremendous transformation in these ecosystems giving rise to new approaches for how software is developed, as well as the management and execution of the software development process.  Three domains in which these changes have been especially notable are (1) in the human resources involved in software development; (2) in the software agents that impact software applications under development; and (3) development of new practices in relation to these transformations.

 In the human resource domain, the emergence of software-focused crowdsourcing platforms (e.g., TopCoder) has expanded the scope and composition of who contributes to software development (Ågerfalk et al. 2015, Saremi et al. 2017). At the same time, the intensified collaborations between commercial organizations and open source communities in the development of software demands new thinking on how to balance an expectation of openness with the pursuit of commercial interests such as monetization (e.g., Germonprez et al. 2017).

In the software agent domain, we have seen an increase in actors at the content, device and network layers because of the emergence of unique digital ecosystems. The intertwining of these layers of the digital ecosystem has resulted in the immense expansion of the number of stakeholders involved in the development of software and the dependencies between them (Yoo et al. 2010). For example, the explosion of APIs (17,000 at last count: http://bit.ly/2xz5GtW) across a variety of software sectors is not only evidence for an increase of involved actors, but also illustrates changes in the development of software functions that interface with services generated by these APIs (Tavares et al. 2017).

In addition, the expansion of the Internet of Things has introduced products that serve as platforms that connect developers with consumers enabling the continuous delivery of services and generation of insights from products in use (Porter and Heppelmann 2014). Moreover, novel practices like DevOps and BizDev enable continuous development (Fitzgerald and Stol, 2017), and development methods are increasingly becoming hybrid (Bick et al., 2017).

We are interested in ground-breaking, thought-provoking submissions that can inform our appreciation of the orchestration of software development in these different emerging digital ecosystems. These expansive changes to the software landscape necessitate a revisiting of our approaches to software development; including identification of new development practices for the challenges and opportunities that have emerged amid this transformation, understanding how existing practices are being adapted to meet these changes, exploring how development can be scaled-up to meet the challenges and opportunities created by these changes and elaborating the strategic imperatives that come to the fore when developing in such ecosystems.

Conceptual and empirical submissions are welcome and may address any the following topic areas, but are not be limited to these:

  • Strategic considerations when leveraging crowdsourcing platforms for software development
  • Combinations of new approaches to software development and IT operation
  • Software design for leveraging API-based services
  • Balancing openness and commercial interest in collaboration with open source communities
  • Complexity in software development and organizations
  • Coordinating software development between employees and the crowd
  • Governance of software engagements with various actors
  • Customer collaboration across multiple boundaries
  • Coordinating software development and product development cycles
  • Scaling and tailoring agile practices in software development
  • Adaptation of software development methods for engaging with a multitude of actors, including crowds and in large-scale projects
  • Continuous software development, DevOps and BizDev practices
  • Empirical examples of hybrid development methods and tailoring of development methods in new contexts.

Kindly direct any questions regarding this special issue to the guest editors:

Deadline and submission instructions

  • Submission deadline: 1. Sept 2018
  • (Second revision: 1. March 2019)
  • (Third revision: January 2020)

The editors will screen all submitted manuscripts. Manuscripts that are outside of the scope of the special issue or are not sufficiently developed will be desk rejected.

Manuscripts will be reviewed according to normal criteria in the journal, articles that are not accepted after two review cycles may be considered for transfer as normal submissions to the journal.

The first round of reviews will be performed within three months of submission, revised manuscripts must be returned within three months after receiving feedback. The second review cycle will be follow a two-month cycle for review and revision.

Editorial board members and reviewers

  • Michael C. Cahalane, University of New South Wales, Australia
  • Adela Chen, Colorado State University, USA
  • Noel Carroll, National University of Ireland, Ireland
  • Torgeir Dingsøyr, SINTEF and NTNU University, Norway
  • Ben Eaton, University of Surrey, UK
  • Brian Fitzgerald, Limerick University, Ireland
  • Hartmut Höhle, University of Mannheim, Germany
  • Peng Huang, University of Maryland, USA
  • Peter-Axel Nielsen, Aalborg University, Denmark
  • Michael Schermann, Santa Clara University, USA
  • Maha Shaikh, University of Warwick, UK
  • John Tripp, Baylor University, USA
  • Virpi Kristiina Tuunainen, Aalto University, Finland
  • Ling Xue, Georgia State University, USA
  • Ron Webber, University of Queensland, Australia
  • Jaime Windeler, University of Cincinnati, USA
  • Manuel Wiesche, TU Munich, Germany
  • Thomas Kude, ESSEC, France