Software & Systems Modeling

, Volume 16, Issue 2, pp 313–331 | Cite as

A taxonomy of tool-related issues affecting the adoption of model-driven engineering

  • Jon WhittleEmail author
  • John Hutchinson
  • Mark Rouncefield
  • Håkan Burden
  • Rogardt Heldal
Special Section Paper


Although poor tool support is often blamed for the low uptake of model-driven engineering (MDE), recent studies have shown that adoption problems are as likely to be down to social and organizational factors as with tooling issues. This article discusses the impact of tools on MDE adoption and practice and does so while placing tooling within a broader organizational context. The article revisits previous data on MDE use in industry (19 in-depth interviews with MDE practitioners) and reanalyzes that data through the specific lens of MDE tools in an attempt to identify and categorize the issues that users had with the tools they adopted. In addition, the article presents new data: 20 new interviews in two specific companies—and analyzes it through the same lens. A key contribution of the paper is a loose taxonomy of tool-related considerations, based on empirical industry data, which can be used to reflect on the tooling landscape as well as inform future research on MDE tools.


Model-driven engineering Modeling tools Organizational change 



The authors would like to thank all those who took part in the interviews, including those who facilitated the study at Ericsson and Volvo.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jon Whittle
    • 1
    Email author
  • John Hutchinson
    • 1
  • Mark Rouncefield
    • 1
  • Håkan Burden
    • 2
  • Rogardt Heldal
    • 2
  1. 1.School of Computing and Communications, InfoLab21Lancaster UniversityLancasterUK
  2. 2.Computer Science and EngineeringChalmers University of Technology and University of GothenburgGothenburgSweden

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