CLOSED—50 Years of Software Engineering: Call for Papers


Submission deadline: 1 Feb. 2018

Publication: Sept./Oct. 2018

2018 will mark the 50th anniversary of the first NATO Software Engineering Conference, where the term “software engineering” was coined. IEEE Software will commemorate this occasion with a theme issue. By combining historical and insightful perspectives on various software engineering disciplines and trends, we hope to help guide the field’s further development.

Formats include, but aren’t limited to,

  • original feature articles;
  • moderated point–counterpoint pieces;
  • audio, video, or print interviews with luminaries and rising stars;
  • audio, video, or print roundtable or panel discussions; or
  • dual-author pieces that pair a pioneer with a rising star, or an educator with a prominent graduate student working in industry, to compare and contrast their takes on a discipline or trend.

Contributions should focus on

  • a historical overview and the relevance of a discipline or trend for current and future work;
  • debunking myths or established software engineering folklore pertaining to a discipline or trend;
  • timeline views, with a vision for the future, pertaining to a discipline or trend;
  • principles, fundamentals, and concepts that have stood the test of time pertaining to a discipline or trend; or
  • a holistic synthesis of software engineering trends and their evolution that permeate multiple disciplines.

The disciplines or trends to be addressed include, but aren’t limited to,

  • requirements;
  • tools, infrastructure, platforms, technologies, and development or programming paradigms;
  • architecture and design;
  • software process and engineering practices;
  • software quality, including testing, verification, and validation;
  • software measurement and analytics, including evidence-based and empirical approaches;
  • the economics of software development and of decision making in software development;
  • software evolution and maintenance;
  • software engineering of critical and embedded systems, including those in the automotive, aerospace, or healthcare domains;
  • software engineering of cloud-based, Internet-of-Things, parallel, or distributed systems;
  • software engineering’s business context;
  • the societal, economic, and business impact of software engineering research, particularly focusing on the relation between academia and industry;
  • gaps and trends in software engineering education; and
  • software heritage and preservation initiatives.

We encourage contributions from groups of authors that combine or contrast viewpoints or address differences and commonalities among the past, present, and next generation of software engineering trends, technologies, principles, practices, educators, and practitioners. Contributions should be reflective and demonstrate a deep understanding the history and evolution of the topic they address.


For more information about the theme, contact the guest editors:

We encourage potential contributors to run their ideas by the guest editors before submitting their contribution. Don’t hesitate to contact the guest editors with any questions about formats, topics, and guidelines. Exceptions to the submission guidelines may be granted depending on the idea’s originality and merit and the submission format, subject to approval by the editor in chief and staff.

Submission Guidelines

Manuscripts must not exceed 3,000 words including figures and tables, which count for 250 words each. Submissions exceeding these limits might be rejected without refereeing. Articles deemed within the theme and scope will be peer reviewed and are subject to editing for magazine style, clarity, organization, and space. We reserve the right to edit the title of all submissions. Be sure to include the name of the theme issue for which you’re submitting.

Articles should have a practical orientation and be written in a style accessible to practitioners. Overly complex, purely research-oriented or theoretical treatments aren’t appropriate. Articles should be novel. IEEE Software doesn’t republish material published previously in other venues, including other periodicals and formal conference or workshop proceedings, whether previous publication was in print or electronic form.

For general author guidelines:

For submission details:

To submit an article: