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Type: Conference paper
Title: An empirical investigation of systematic reviews in software engineering
Author: Zhang, H.
Babar, M.
Citation: 2011 International Symposium on Empirical Software Engineering and Measurement, 2011 / pp.87-96
Publisher: IEEE
Issue Date: 2011
Series/Report no.: International Symposium on Empirical Software Engineering and Measurement
ISBN: 9781457722035
ISSN: 1949-3770
Conference Name: Empirical Software Engineering and Measurement (ESEM) (22 Sep 2011 - 23 Sep 2011 : Alberta, Canada)
Statement of
He Zhang, Muhammad Ali Babar
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Systematic Literature Reviews (SLRs) have gained significant popularity among software engineering (SE) researchers since 2004. Several researchers have also been working on improving the scientific and technological support for SLRs in SE. We argue that there is also an essential need for evidence-based body of knowledge about different aspects of the adoption of SLRs in SE. OBJECTIVE: The main objective of this research is to empirically investigate the adoption and use of SLRs in SE research from various perspectives. METHOD: We used multi-method approach as it is based on a combination of complementary research methods which are expected to compensate each others' limitations. RESULTS: A large majority of the participants are convinced of the value of using a rigorous and systematic methodology for literature reviews. However, there are concerns about the required time and resources for SLRs. One of the most important motivators for performing SLRs is new findings and inception of innovative ideas for further research. The reported SLRs are more influential compared to the traditional literature reviews in terms of number of citations. One of the main challenges of conducting SLRs is drawing a balance between rigor and required effort. CONCLUSIONS: SLR has become a popular research methodology for conducting literature review and evidence aggregation in SE. There is an overall positive perception about this methodology. The findings provide interesting insights into different aspects of SLRs. We expect that the findings can provide valuable information to readers on what can be expected from conducting SLRs and the potential impact of such reviews.
Keywords: Systematic (literature) reviews; evidence-based software engineering; methodology adoption
Rights: © 2011 IEEE
RMID: 0030007930
DOI: 10.1109/ESEM.2011.17
Appears in Collections:Computer Science publications

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