Requirements Engineering in the Planning Phase of a Software Ecosystem

Kati Saarni*, Marjo Kauppinen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionScientificpeer-review


[Motivation] Companies are building software ecosystems to gain competitive advantage by developing digital services together for customers. The planning phase of the software ecosystem can, however, be challenging. [Question] The goal of this study was to analyze what the role of requirements engineering (RE) was in the planning phase of a small-sized software ecosystem. The case study was conducted by interviewing representatives of all six actors of the ecosystem and analyzing material from the 12 planning workshops. [Results] The paper describes the conceptualization process of digital services the actors used during the planning phase. This process contained a flow of tasks from a vision and objectives of the software ecosystem to a go/no-go decision on the development of a Minimum Viable Product (MVP). One key characteristic of the conceptualization process was to have traceability from the prioritized functionalities of the MVP to a value proposition, target customer groups and customer paths of digital services and further to the vision and objectives of the software ecosystem. [Contribution] The paper provides knowledge on how actors can start building a software ecosystem together from a business perspective. In addition, it addresses the importance of RE to link the business view to the development of the MVP of digital services in the software ecosystem.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRequirements Engineering
Subtitle of host publicationFoundation for Software Quality - 27th International Working Conference, REFSQ 2021, Proceedings
EditorsFabiano Dalpiaz, Paola Spoletini
Number of pages16
ISBN (Print)9783030731274
Publication statusPublished - 2021
MoE publication typeA4 Conference publication
EventInternational Working Conference on Requirements Engineering: Foundation for Software Quality - Essen, Germany
Duration: 12 Apr 202115 Apr 2021
Conference number: 27

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics)
Volume12685 LNCS
ISSN (Print)0302-9743
ISSN (Electronic)1611-3349


ConferenceInternational Working Conference on Requirements Engineering
Abbreviated titleREFSQ


  • Business view
  • Conceptualization process
  • Planning
  • Requirements engineering
  • Software ecosystem


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