Agile and Lean Discovery and Development Minitrack

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In this minitrack, we seek research papers and experience reports that explore agile development, lean product management and agile/lean organizations.

  • What evidence-based guidance can we provide to product leaders, managers and developers to help motivate, create and sustain better agile/lean behaviors and more profitable outcomes?
  • How can we incorporate product design, architecture, engineering, risk reduction, budgeting and offshoring into agile/lean while preserving experimentation and adaptation?
  • What common behaviors do we see in agile (including Scrum, Kanban, Extreme Programming/XP, etc.) teams and lean product management (including Lean Startup, Customer Development, etc.) and how do those behaviors affect outcomes?
  • How do organizations and cultures restructure to support these philosophies and when they do not restructure, what happens?
  • How do organizations implement, monitor and improve hiring, coaching, training and mentoring?
  • Which metrics help enterprises, teams and individuals adapt and improve?
  • How do markets respond to rapid iterations and end-user experimentation?

Possible topics for the minitrack include but are not limited to:

  • Empirical outcome comparisons in industrial settings: agile and non-agile, remote and collocated, impact of different agile methods, etc.
  • New frontiers in agile management – going beyond software development
  • Forecasting, risk reduction, planning
  • Agile organizations as rhythmic and recursive experimention
  • Exploring the fit between agile organizations and their environmental context.
  • Agile and Lean requirements engineering, dependency management and risk management
  • Conflict in agile organizations and agile development teams: what cultures work and don’t work?
  • What cultures and leadership characteristics lead to sustained agility?
  • Evolution of agile organizations
  • Case studies on agile management and experimentation, in atypical situations
  • New approaches to teams and teaming
  • Impact of tool use on agile management
  • New approaches to teaching and coaching agile organizations
  • Lessons learned in agile management
  • How do agile management and traditional management complement or conflict?

Accepted papers are candidates for a special fast-track section of Journal of Information Technology Theory and Application (JITTA).

Minitrack Co-Chairs:

Daniel Greening (Primary Contact)
Senex Rex

John Tripp
Baylor University

Jeff Sutherland
Scrum, Inc.


Recent Submissions

Now showing 1 - 7 of 7
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    Understanding the Relations Between Iterative Cycles in Software Engineering
    ( 2017-01-04) Terho, Henri ; Suonsyrjä, Sampo ; Systä, Kari ; Mikkonen, Tommi
    Iterations are one of the most successful mechanisms in software development to ensure that the resulting system is satisfactory. Due to its strengths, various kinds of iterations have been integrated to software development with varying goals. In this paper, we consider different types of iterations related to software development, including prototyping, incremental development, sprints as in e.g. Scrum, and iterations as defined in Lean Startup. The goal is to understand the relations between the types of iterations, and to find out what kind of similarities and differences they have with each other. As a result, we find that while the goals are different, it is possible for the iterations to coexist, so that one form of iteration is used as a tool to complete the goals of another.
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    Trading Discipline for Agility? Questioning the Unfaithful Appropriation of Agile Software Development Practices
    ( 2017-01-04) Saeed, Akbar
    Agile software development practices are rapidly replacing traditional and apparently more disciplined methodologies. However, empirical evidence suggests that organizations experience varying levels of success as more structured processes are traded for more agile ones. Using an autoethnographic approach, we reflect on how the various practices of XP discipline time-space relations amongst developer, customer and code. In this new form of disciplining, we contend that each actor is located in time and space in disciplined or controlled ways. We conclude that the faithful appropriation of the entire complement of agile development practices seems to be critical to the novel disciplinary positioning that they together collectively promote. \
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    Towards an Innovative Validation-Driven Approach to Lean Product Development
    ( 2017-01-04) Al-Baik, Osama ; Miller, James ; Greening, Daniel
    Many software products contain unnecessary functionality. Industrial reports show 45% of the features in analyzed software products are never used. \ Software-centric organizations have been trying to sustain their competitive advantage by re-defining their product development strategy. Recent attempts to re-strategize the product development process tend towards customer-centric approaches. We propose a validation-driven model based around proven lean principles, agile methods, and value-driven design. To increase the model’s likelihood of success, the study discusses suitable guidelines and deployment protocols that have been evolved in industrial settings. \
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    Challenges in Transitioning to an Agile Way of Working
    ( 2017-01-04) Hekkala, Riitta ; Stein, Mari-Klara ; Rossi, Matti ; Smolander, Kari
    This longitudinal study examined how an information systems development team transitioned to an agile way of working. We describe the main events of a large, inter-organizational project, where agile methods and practices were applied for the first time. The organizations involved had a long tradition in heavy, waterfall style projects, and many of those past projects had severe challenges. We examine how the agile way of working was understood by particular groups (project team, management and suppliers), as well as how these understandings changed over time. The lack of experience with agile development, no common view on ‘agility’ and its key principles and practices were obvious challenges for the transition. Our study suggests that complex agile projects need to have very clear goals and management has to be able to communicate these, while preserving the autonomy of teams and individual team members.
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    Artifacts for Agile User-Centered Design: A Systematic Mapping
    ( 2017-01-04) Garcia, Andrei ; Silva da Silva, Tiago ; Selbach Silveira, Milene
    Abstract—The integration of Agile and User-Centered Design methods is a fundamental condition to improve the quality of software products. However, one of the main problems faced to establish this integration on a day-to-day basis is how to improve communication among the invariably distinct involved teams. We believe that the artifacts involved in the development process could be used to support and increase teams’ communication. To better understand this scenario, we performed a systematic mapping study on artifacts and their role in the communication between Agile and User-Centered Design fields. Through the analysis of 56 papers dealing with this specific topic, we present the artifacts used for communication in these approaches and software development events when they are used. The analyzed studies reinforced our beliefs about the importance of artifacts to improve teams’ communication.
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    Are More Frequent Releases Always Better? Dynamics of Pivoting, Scaling, and the Minimum Viable Product
    ( 2017-01-04) Anderson, Edward ; Lim, Shi Ying ; Joglekar, Nitin
    Using the system dynamics methodology, we model the minimum viable product (MVP) approach to product development and examine the impact of release frequency, planning practices and committed reengineering capacity on software development outcomes. We leverage the organizational learning, Lean Startup, and Agile methodology literature to form the underpinnings of the model and measure outcomes using cumulative market cost of failing to meet market wants and cumulative engineering cost. While shorter release cycles are better in general for achieving market fit, the relationship is moderated by planning delays and committed reengineering capacity. We show that reducing the extent of pivot in each iteration may be better for firms. Firms instead should iterate moderately and not radically during any particular release. Counter intuitively, planning delays are beneficial by reducing overreaction to spurious market signals. Finally, we discuss implications of our findings for future research on learning and planning amongst entrepreneurial firms.
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    Introduction to Agile and Lean Discovery and Development Minitrack
    ( 2017-01-04) Tripp, John ; Greening, Daniel ; Sutherland, Jeff