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Continuous Assimilation of Change in Agile Software Development: An empirical study on the role of the knowledge-based resources
Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Computing, Department of Software Engineering.
Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Computing, Department of Software Engineering.
Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Computing, Department of Software Engineering.
Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Computing, Department of Software Engineering.
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

As the software value chain is knowledge-based due to the high dependency on people, the lack of practice to manage knowledge as a resource might jeopardize its application in software development. The resource-based view of the firm provides a different perspective on the utilization of knowledge, assisting the identification of the Knowledge-Based Resources (KBRs) that allow a company to have a continuous readiness to quickly respond to the market changes. To understand how the KBRs support coordination in Agile Software Development (ASD), we applied a grounded theory approach, collecting data from 18 practitioners, coming from five companies. As results, we identified 44 KBRs that were grouped in the Continuous Assimilation Model (CHASM). They support coordination in ASD with continuous assimilation of change which is supported by people’s business analytic perspective and product systemic reasoning. The companies are able to utilize a certain level of their KBRs through social collaboration and team environment/settings. However, the inefficient utilization of these resources results in a significant knowledge loss. Furthermore, CHASM points out areas where practitioners can establish strategies based on the priorities that the companies give to the investigated KBRs, as well as a set of research opportunities for future investigation.

Keywords [en]
Knowledge-based Resources, Agile Software Development, Grounded Theory
National Category
Computer Systems
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:bth-18506OAI: oai:DiVA.org:bth-18506DiVA, id: diva2:1340057
Projects
S.E.R.T. Research ProfileAvailable from: 2019-08-01 Created: 2019-08-01 Last updated: 2019-09-06Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Understanding and Supporting Knowledge Management in Agile Software Development
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Understanding and Supporting Knowledge Management in Agile Software Development
2019 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

 Background. Agile Software Development (ASD) promises agility and flexibility in dealing with uncertainty by prioritizing interaction between people supported by informal communication and knowledge sharing. The lack of practices to manage the knowledge as a resource might jeopardize the application of knowledge in the production of goods and service. The utilization of Knowledge Management (KM) strategies can significantly support achieving and sustaining competitive advantage and brings several benefits to software development. However, how to manage knowledge in ASD is still not well understood or investigated.

 Objectives. The main objective of this thesis is to contribute to the software engineering field by providing a different perspective on directions that KM can take to improve knowledge-based resource (KBR) management in ASD. The detailed objectives are: (i) Understand the current ASD environment regarding KM; (ii) Identify KBRs in ASD and its implications for KM; and (iii) Provide an initial set of variables to evaluate knowledge criticality of knowledge items in ASD.

 Method. We used a mixed-methods approach to address the objective of this thesis. The methods selected to conduct the studies include systematic literature review, grounded theory, and improvement case study. The data collection comprised a literature review, semi-structured interviews, and practitioners’ feedback through static validation.

 Results. From our SLR we observed that that KM strategies in ASD promote mainly knowledge transfer through practices that stimulate social interaction to share tacit knowledge in the project layer, increasing the risk of losing knowledge by keeping the knowledge localized inside a few individual’s minds. When it comes to coordination, practitioners utilize KBRs in their routines, through social collaboration within teams’ environment/settings. However, this process is nonsystematic, which brings inefficiency to KBR utilization resulting in knowledge loss. It can generate negative implications to the course of the software development, including meaningless searches in databases, frustration because of recurrent problems, and unawareness of knowledge sources. To support decision making related to knowledge retention, we have developed an initial version of the method to evaluate the criticality (KCEM) of a knowledge item, which is divided into two categories, relevance, and scarcity.

 Conclusion. The current results of this thesis are of particular interest. However, we recognize that the work is unfinished. As a complement to this thesis, we have planned our long-term objective, which is to contribute to creating scalable KM solutions for companies adopting ASD.We divide this long-term objective into three studies: Carry out a complementary study to apply KCEM in different companies; explore efficient ways of storing codified knowledge in combination with the KCEM, and investigate how to define metrics to evaluate the outcomes of KM practices.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Karlskrona: Blekinge Tekniska Högskola, 2019. p. 144
Series
Blekinge Institute of Technology Licentiate Dissertation Series, ISSN 1650-2140 ; 10
Keywords
Knowledge Management, Agile Software Development, Knowledge resource
National Category
Computer Systems
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:bth-18509 (URN)978-91-7295-380-2 (ISBN)
Presentation
2019-09-11, Karlskrona, 09:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Projects
S.E.R.T.E.R.T. Research Profile
Available from: 2019-08-02 Created: 2019-08-01 Last updated: 2019-09-03Bibliographically approved

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Ouriques, RaquelWnuk, KrzysztofGorschek, TonyBerntsson Svensson, Richard

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