The software business is changing; partly due to a global re-distribution of engineering competencies, partly due to abundant, but marginally profitable opportunities of providing lightweight infotainment services in a global network. The software development process has not changed accordingly, and within a broader trend of globalization, companies look towards offshore outsourcing of software development as one way of cutting development costs. However, many stakeholders are discontent with the quality of deliveries from offshore projects. Many of the problems are explicated by the demographically dispersed nature of a global economy: Different cultures, language barriers and unrealistic expectations. This paper addresses these issues from another angle. Examining in-depth the development processes of an international company, it is concluded that outsourcing, rather than causing upheaval to software development, ought to be seen as subjected to the same naive division of labour as many previous attempts of ‘rationalizing’ this process. Moreover, the counter-measures usually proposed imply ‘much more of the same’ which did not work to begin with either. Therefore, globalization is putting empirical studies of software development back on the agenda and it indicates a need to re-conceptualize the entire software process. A better understanding of how programmers work is needed to back the development of methods for co-located as well as distributed development.
Kristoffersen, Steinar, "Requirements communication culture in mobile services development" (2006). ECIS 2006 Proceedings. 69.