Cox, K., Phalp, K. T., Bleistein, S. J. and Verner, J., 2004. Deriving requirements from process models via the problem frames approach. Information and Software Technology, 47 (5), pp. 319-337.
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Jackson’s problem frames is an approach to describing a recurring software problem. It is presumed that some knowledge of the application domain and context has been gathered so that an appropriate problem frame can be determined. However, the identification of aspects of the problem, and its appropriate ‘framing’ is recognised as a difficult task. One way to describe a software problem context is through process modelling. Once contextual information has been elicited, and explicitly described, an understanding of what problems need to be solved should emerge. However, this use of process models to inform requirements is often rather ad hoc; the traceability from business process to software requirement is not always as straightforward as it ought to be. Hence, this paper proposes an approach for deriving and contextualising software requirements through use of the problem frames approach from business process models. We apply the approach on a live industrial e-business project in which we assess the relevance and usefulness of problem frames as a means of describing the requirements context. We found that the software problem did not always match easily with Jackson’s five existing frames. Where no frame was identified, however, we found that Jackson’s problem diagrams did couch the requirements in their right context, and thus application of the problem frames approach was useful. This implies a need for further work in adapting a problem frames approach to the context of e-business systems.
|Additional Information:||This paper makes a significant contribution by integrating process modelling and requirements using problem frames. This idea was first suggested in a position paper, by two of the authors, Cox and Phalp, in REFSQ2003. However, this journal paper describes the approach in detail and reports upon its application to an industrial study. The study showed that the integrated approach provided benefits for the derivation of requirements and could be applied successfully to large scale processes. The paper provided a basis for much further work in the area, and was the inspiration for collaborations with National ICT Australia (NICTA). NICTA is one of the most prestigious empirical software engineering research groups in the World, and the collaboration with NICTA colleagues is testament to the quality and impact of this work. Hence, the paper has been hugely beneficial in proposing a framework, which, now extended, allows business goals and processes to be directly related to IT requirements, a theme that is now becoming widely accepted within the requirements engineering community.|
|Uncontrolled Keywords:||Problem frames Process modelling Requirements engineering E-business systems|
|Subjects:||Generalities > Computer Science and Informatics|
|Group:||School of Design, Engineering & Computing|
|Deposited By:||INVALID USER|
|Deposited On:||02 Apr 2007|
|Last Modified:||07 Mar 2013 14:36|
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