University of Oulu

Nirnaya Tripathi, Eriks Klotins, Rafael Prikladnicki, Markku Oivo, Leandro Bento Pompermaier, Arun Sojan Kudakacheril, Michael Unterkalmsteiner, Kari Liukkunen, Tony Gorschek, An anatomy of requirements engineering in software startups using multi-vocal literature and case survey, Journal of Systems and Software, Volume 146, 2018, Pages 130-151, ISSN 0164-1212,

An anatomy of requirements engineering in software startups using multi-vocal literature and case survey

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Author: Tripathi, Nirnaya1; Klotins, Eriks2; Prikladnicki, Rafael3;
Organizations: 1M3S Research Group, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
2Software Engineering Research Lab, Blekinge Institute of Technology, Karlskrona, Sweden
3Computer Science School, PUCRS Pontifical Catholic University of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil
Format: article
Version: accepted version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 0.8 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Elsevier, 2018
Publish Date: 2020-08-28


Context: Software startups aim to develop innovative products, grow rapidly, and thus become important in the development of economy and jobs. Requirements engineering (RE) is a key process area in software development, but its effects on software startups are unclear.

Objective: The main objective of this study was to explore how RE (elicitation, documentation, prioritization and validation) is used in software startups.

Method: A multi-vocal literature review (MLR) was used to find scientific and gray literature. In addition, a case survey was employed to gather empirical data to reach this study’s objective.

Results: In the MLR, 36 primary articles were selected out of 28,643 articles. In the case survey, 80 respondents provided information about software startup cases across the globe. Data analysis revealed that during RE processes, internal sources (e.g., for source), analyses of similar products (e.g., elicitation), uses of informal notes (e.g., for documentation), values to customers, products and stakeholders (e.g., for prioritization) and internal reviews/prototypes (e.g., for validation) were the most used techniques.

Conclusion: After an analysis of primary literature, it was concluded that research on this topic is still in early stages and more systematic research is needed. Furthermore, few topics were suggested for future research.

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Series: Journal of systems and software
ISSN: 0164-1212
ISSN-E: 1873-1228
ISSN-L: 0164-1212
Volume: 146
Pages: 130 - 151
DOI: 10.1016/j.jss.2018.08.059
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 113 Computer and information sciences
Copyright information: © 2018. This manuscript version is made available under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license