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How do software architects consider non-functional requirements: An exploratory study

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4 Author(s)
Ameller, D. ; Software Eng. for Inf. Syst. Group, Univ. Politec. de Catalunya, Barcelona, Spain ; Ayala, C. ; Cabot, J. ; Franch, X.

Dealing with non-functional requirements (NFRs) has posed a challenge onto software engineers for many years. Over the years, many methods and techniques have been proposed to improve their elicitation, documentation, and validation. Knowing more about the state of the practice on these topics may benefit both practitioners' and researchers' daily work. A few empirical studies have been conducted in the past, but none under the perspective of software architects, in spite of the great influence that NFRs have on daily architects' practices. This paper presents some of the findings of an empirical study based on 13 interviews with software architects. It addresses questions such as: who decides the NFRs, what types of NFRs matter to architects, how are NFRs documented, and how are NFRs validated. The results are contextualized with existing previous work.

Published in:

Requirements Engineering Conference (RE), 2012 20th IEEE International

Date of Conference:

24-28 Sept. 2012