A Theory of Coordination: From Propositions to Hypotheses in Agile Software Development

Date
2021-01-05
Authors
Kanaparan, Geetha
Strode, Diane
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Abstract
Coordination is crucial in agile software development projects and a Theory of Coordination in co-located agile software development projects explains coordination in this context. This theory has propositions based on case study research. To improve the generalisability of theory built from case studies, researchers often transition to a theory testing phase involving a large-scale field study using the survey method. Prior to a large-scale field study, the propositions generated during theory building must be converted to testable hypotheses. There is little guidance explaining the complexity of this transition process and the challenges involved. Therefore, this paper explains the operationalisation process of transitioning from research propositions to research hypotheses and illustrates the process using the Theory of Coordination. The paper offers six practical guidelines, identifies seven challenges encountered, and potential solutions for each challenge. This paper contributes to agile software development and theory testing research offering seven recommendations for research practice.
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Keywords
Agile and Lean: Organizations, Products and Development, agile software development, coordination theory, propositions and hypotheses, theory building, theory testing
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