Situational method quality

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Some overall method characteristics, such as agility and scalability, have become increasingly important. These characteristics are different from existing method requirements which focus on the functional purposes of individual method chunks and overall methods. Characteristics like agility and scalability are often not embodied in the function of a single method chunk but are instead reflected in constraints over one or more method chunks, connections between method chunks and cross-cutting aspects of the overall method. We propose the concept of method tactics, which are techniques for achieving certain method quality attributes. We identify a list of method tactics focusing on agility and scalability by considering factors that affect these quality attributes. We validate the feasibility of using method tactics by applying them to traditional software development method chunks and deriving practices for agile development. We examine the effectiveness of the tactics by comparing our derived practices with existing practices for agile development. The comparison results show that most of the derived practices are found in existing agile methods. We also identify new practices that may have potential for use in agile methods. The results demonstrate initial support for our proposal for the use of method tactics, and for the extraction or invention of further cross-cutting primitive method tactics for more flexible situational method engineering.
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Zhu, Liming
Staples, Mark
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UNSW Faculty