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2nd Hamburg RE Symposium – a Recap

In collaboration with HITeC, OpenReq and Iteratec, we organized the 2nd Hamburg Requirements Engineering Symposium on September 4th, 2019. This event gathered 65 participants from industry and academia to discuss the state-of-the-art in RE, particularly applying Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence to Requirements Engineering and vice versa. The event consisted of two keynote speakers, 14 talks in two parallel tracks, and Demos/Posters as well as networking opportunities through the coffee and lunch break. With such a high turnout (twice as many people as last year) and positive responses from the participants, this event was a large success.

The first keynote was by Dr. Prof. Vogelsang from TU Berlin, titled: “Is AI changing RE or is RE changing AI?” started the event off strong. Vogelsang gave the audience a big picture perspective on AI and RE, and how the two fields are interacting with and changing each other. Following Vogelsang, Dr. Stettinger from TU Graz gave a presentation of OpenReq Live, the main tool output of the OpenReq project. To close the event, Prof. Dr. Mobasher from DePaul University in the US gave an in depth keynote on the current trend of Context-Aware Recommender Systems.

The talks at this year’s symposium included talks from OpenReq members, OpenReq OpenCall partners, and members from the RE industry. Besides the keynotes, there were four sessions at this year’s symposium. The topics of the sessions were: User Feedback, Requirements & Developers, RE in Practice: Specs and Beyond, and Machine Learning for Issue Trackers.

User Feedback provided insights into how RE can leverage the magnitude of end-user feedback that currently exists regarding software (and hardware) products. Requirements & Developers discussed how to connect developers with requirements, whether that be through supporting and enhancing their workflow, or building better requirements documents to make their job easier. RE in Practice: Specs and Beyond gave a refreshing perspective on how RE is conducted in practice, current challenges, and how state-of-the-art research is being used to enhance the workflow of requirements engineers. And finally, Machine Learning for Issue Trackers took a look at industry standard issue trackers to manage requirements, and how innovative work within OpenReq is improving how developers and requirements engineers interact with them.

Following the main event, there was a 90 minutes boat trip through the Hamburg harbor. The weather held out long enough for the participants to have a thorough history lesson while enjoying the beautiful views offered by the Elbe river and Hamburg harbor.

Finally, the 2nd Hamburg Requirements Engineering Symposium came to a close with the participants connecting over good food and a relaxed atmosphere.

Data Challenge

One of the most vibrant topics in requirements engineering research is the analysis of app reviews. The field is concerned with helping developers and managers to extract information from masses of unstructured and freely-written user reviews. The goal is to better understand user needs such as problems users face and features they wish would be integrated in the app. The Data Challenge was taking place on Monday and Tuesday of the OpenReq Week. We distributed six thousand app reviews labeled as problem report, feature request, and other. The participants were also given ten thousand English tweets containing the same labels, as well as issue tracker data to come up with ideas on how to perform an accurate classification. The winner of the Data Challenge, Tim Pietz, a computer-science student at the University of Hamburg, applied Google’s state-of-the-art deep learning model BERT to perform the classification task.  He successfully outperformed approaches from research by up to 7% (f1 score).

Eclipse Hackathon

The Eclipse Hackathon, in parallel with the Data Challenge, took place on Tuesday of the OpenReq Week. The objective of this Hackathon was to improve the Eclipse IDE with the help of OpenReq. Participants were asked to use the OpenReq Eclipse IDE Bug prioritizer plugin to find bugs to resolve. The plugin shows bug reports and feature requests from bugs.eclipse.org based on a personalized recommendations for the current user. It further shows the most discussed bugs in the last 30 days from bugs.eclipse.org to find bugs with a potentially high impact. The hackathon winner will be announced in a few weeks after we had been able to evaluation all contributions.

Final Thoughts

This year’s symposium was a huge success and we are very happy to have supported yet another year. If you have interest in the Hamburg Requirements Engineering community (or RE community in general), please reach out to our group to get in touch regarding RE research, industry contacts, the OpenReq project, or anything else you might have in mind.

RE’18 was a great success!

From the 20-24th of August over 300 researchers met at the beautiful Banff Centre (Alberta, Canada) to present and discuss their latest findings at the 26th International Requirements Engineering Conference (RE’18).

The week was filled with an interesting program. Tutorials, workshops, a doctoral symposium, and an industry day (a sign that the community is making an impact) took place before the three-day main conference.

The main conference (click here for the full program) displayed bleeding-edge research in requirements engineering. Three compelling keynotes—delivered from two world-renowned researchers and a representative of the self-driving car industry—accompanied the sessions. Junior and experienced researchers presented studies, from theoretical to data-driven, in several domains following this year’s theme “Crossing Boundaries and Increasing Impact.” Prof. Walid Maalej was part of the organization and, according to many old-time attendants, RE’18 was one of the most successful in the series. 

RE’18 featured also the first edition of AffectRE (co-organized by Davide Fucci), a workshop dedicated to bringing together researchers interested in studying emotions, moods, and affective states to support better requirements engineering practices and tools. The workshop had a good attendance (between 15 and 20 people) and included two invited talks, four research papers, as well as a discussion session to plan the next steps in this emergent community.

For details about what went on during both events, you can follow the #RE18 and #AffectRE18 hashtags on Twitter. Pictures of the event are available here.

The conference (and possibly the AffectRE workshop) will be back next year in Jeju Island (South Korea) for RE’19! 

Open Position: Full-Time Research Associate

You would like to pursue the challenge of doing a PhD in our Hamburg-based, internationally-recognized, highly-diverse team?

With immediate effect we recruit a research associate (for full details see PDF file). The contract is initially running for three years. The position is full-time. The selected candidate will be remunerated on the basis of the TV-L 13 salary scale. The desirable start is September 1st 2018. German language proficiency is required. 

 

Job description:

You will work in the intersection of the following fields:

  • Requirements engineering and management
  • Empirical software engineering and software analytics
  • Recommender systems, machine learning, and decision support technologies.

You will have multiple opportunities to interact with other researchers and projects at the research group lead by Prof. Maalej.

Tasks and duties:

  • Conduct your own research including conception, development, experimentation, and evaluation tasks
  • Involvement into teaching activities
  • Coordinate research activities, co-supervise students and junior researches
  • Publish and disseminate the research results

Job requirements:

  • Masters Degree
  • Excellent grades and academic record
  • Very high level of commitment, responsibility and self-initiative
  • Intercultural understanding and curiosity to work in new environments and on new topics
  • High knowledge and interest in research and teaching in at least two of the following topics:
    • Software engineering
    • Data science
    • Software applications
    • Empirical research
  • Good skills in the development of apps are of advantage
  • Good skills in modern software technologies, programming languages, and frameworks are preferred
  • Very good written and spoken German/English skills
  • Practical experience in software development and management
  • Experience in research projects, teaching (e.g., tutor-activities), as well as in scientific working and writing are of advantage

Application process:

Applications should include a brief letter of motivation (max. 1 page), the curriculum vitae, and copies of degree certificate(s). Please send your application as ONE PDF file (max 10 MB) to: ed.grubmah-inu.kitamrofninull@jelaam

The University aims to increase the number of women in research and teaching and explicitly encourages women to apply.

Application open until August 5th 2018.

Additional information:

Further information can be found on our research group website.
The university website can be found here.

Hamburg is the second largest city in Germany and has been recently found by The Economist as one of the top 10 cities to live in the world. Further information.

For further queries, please do not hesitate to contact Prof. Dr. Walid Maalej: tel. +4940428 83–2187; email: ed.grubmah-inu.kitamrofninull@jelaam

Open Position: Research Associate

With immediate effect we recruit a research associate for our European Research Project OPENREQ.

The contract is initially running for one year, with an extension option for one additional year. The position is full- time. The selected candidate will be remunerated on the basis of the TV-L salary scale. The desirable start is January 1st 2018.

Job description:

You will work in the intersection of the following fields:

  • Requirements engineering and management
  • Empirical software engineering and software analytics
  • Recommender systems, machine learning, and decision support technologies.

This position is coupled with the recently accepted H2020 research project OPENREQ. The project involves 9 European institutions and is coordinated by us. The aim is to develop an innovative, open source recommendation & decision support platform that assist stakeholders during requirements engineering, release planning, and software evolution tasks.

The project is set in an international and multi-disciplinary environment, involving partners from software industry, telecommunication, transportation and the open source community.

You will also have multiple opportunities to interact with other researchers and projects at the research group lead by Prof. Maalej.

Tasks and duties:

  • Conduct your own research including conception, development, experimentation, and evaluation tasks
  • Coordinate research activities, co-supervise students and junior researches
  • Publish and disseminate the research results

Job requirements:

  • Master Degree (MSc) in computer science, software engineering with focus on recommender systems
  • Excellent grades and academic record
  • Very high level of commitment, responsibility and self-initiative
  • Very good written and spoken English skills (Native Speakers preferred)
  • Practical experience in software development and management
  • Experience in research projects
  • Intercultural understanding and curiosity to work in new environments and on new topics
  • German language skills are of advantage

Application process:

Applications should include a brief letter of motivation (max. 1 page), the curriculum vitae, a list of publications, a list of at least three referees with full coordinates, one selected scientific paper with main contribution of the applicant, and copies of degree certificate(s).
Please send your application as ONE PDF file (max 10 MB) to: ed.grubmah-inu.kitamrofninull@jelaam

The University aims to increase the number of women in research and teaching and explicitly encourages women to apply.

Applications received by November 24th 2017 will get priority.

Additional information:

Further information can be found on our research group website.
The university website can be found here.

Hamburg is the second largest city in Germany and has been recently found by The Economist as one of the top 10 cities to live in the world. Further information.

For further queries, please do not hesitate to contact Prof. Dr. Walid Maalej: tel. +4940428 83–2187; email: ed.grubmah-inu.kitamrofninull@jelaam

OPENREQ: 4.6 Million Euro funded EU Research Project

We are happy to announce that the OPENREQ project just received a 4.6 million Euro funding from the European Commission. OPENREQ focuses on Intelligent Recommendation Decision Technologies for Community-Driven Requirements Engineering. At an acceptance rate of below 9%, the 9 partners are glad to start the 3-year research project in 2017. The project is coordinated by our research group MAST. Prof. Maalej is the coordinator and spokesperson.

OPENREQ is an ambitious endeavour based on a cooperation of leading researchers in the areas of recommender systems, context-aware technologies, and group decision making, requirements engineering and collaboration tools, vendors of RE and software engineering tools, large-size geographically distributed open source communities and SME’s specialised in open source solutions and dynamics of open source communities.

The overall vision of the project is to provide core-technologies for future requirements engineering environments that help to achieve the major goals of significantly increased development productivity, improved software quality, and reduced overall investments needed for software projects.

OPENREQ will develop novel context-aware requirements engineering approaches especially in large and distributed software projects, where the scale and complexity of alternatives outstrips the capability of stakeholders to survey them and make individual or group decisions. In such projects, the requirements from feedback of large user communities and stakeholders spread over different locations must be identified and taken into account in an intelligent fashion in order to be able to develop only relevant functionalities in a cost-efficient way and in the needed quality.

MOBIS with 4 papers at the IEEE RE’15 in Canada

Our research group wasA�represented at this year’s RE, the 23nd IEEE International Requirements Engineering Conference again.A�MOBIS members presented the following 2 papers at the main conference:

Furthermore, MOBIS members presented the following 2 papers at the conference collocated workshops:

More information about the conference and the schedule of the presentations can be found at the RE website.A�A�

Best Research Paper at RE’15

Our paper a�?Bug Report, Feature Request, or Simply Praise? On Automatically Classifying App Reviewsa�? authored by Walid Maalej and Hadeer Nabil has been selected at the 23rd International IEEE Requirements Engineering Conference (RE15) as Best Research Paper.

The awarded paper was a.o the result of the research visit of Hadeer Nabil and her Master thesis supervised by Prof. Maalej.

RE is the primer research conference in the field of requirements engineering. It has an acceptance rate of ~15-25% and yearly attracts 250-400 researchers and experts in the field. This year the conference took place Ottowa Canada. More information.
The most influential paper went this year to Paolo Giorgini, Fabio Massacci, John Mylopoulos and Nicola Zannone and was awarded for the Paper “Modeling security requirements through ownership, permission and delegation”

You can download our awarded Paper here.

MOBIS at a leading event on app store analysis

Prof. Maalej gave an invited talk on a�zMining User Reviews in the App Storea�? as a part of The 36th CREST Open WorkshopA� (COW36) at the University College London.

The topic of the workshop was App Store Mining.A� App stores provide a rich source of information for software engineering research, including technical information such as the app binaries, releases and updates as well as business information such as customer reviews, pricing, and popularity. This workshop will bring together software engineering researchers from all over the world to discuss and develop the emerging research agenda in App Store Analysis.

Internationally recognized researchersA�researchers in the field participated in the workshop including Prof. Andreas Zeller, Prof. Hark Harmann, Prof. Ahmad Hassan, and others. From MOBIS, Christoph Stanik also attended the workshop and participated in the discussions. The agenda and the complete list of attendants is available on the workshop website.

The workshop is part of the CREST Open Workshop (COW) program, which started in 2009 and has so far attracted 548 different attendees from 218 different institutions spread over 42 countries. An archive of talks including slides and videos will be available on the workshop website soon. The workshop was also accompanied by a live blogging by Dr Black.

More Information:

MOBIS presents 5 papers at the IEEE RE’14

Our research group is strongly represented at this year’s RE, the 22nd IEEE International Requirements Engineering Conference.A�MOBIS members will present the following 2 papers at the main conference:

Furthermore, MOBIS members will present the following 3 papers at the conference collocated workshops:

More information about the conference and the schedule of the presentations can be found at the RE website.A�A�

Crowdsourcing Requirements in the Mobile Era

Prof. Maalej gives the keynote at the Annual German Meeting on Requirements Engineering (GI-Fachgruppen-Treffen Requirements Engineering). The talk is on “Crowdsourcing Requirements in the Mobile Era” and is in German.A�
This year the meeting takes place in Ilmenau and the main focus is on a�zRequirements Engineering for Mobile Applicationsa�?. More info including the full program of the meeting can be foundA�here.

Natalia Mannov joins our team

A warm welcome to Natalia Mannov, who joins our team as a researcher and a Ph.D. candidate from July 2013. We are looking forward to work together with her in particular in the area of Requirements Engineering and Human Computer Interaction.