Anticipating Success of a Business-Critical Software Project: A Comparative Case Study of Waterfall and Agile Approaches

  • Marko Ikonen
  • Pekka Abrahamsson
Part of the Lecture Notes in Business Information Processing book series (LNBIP, volume 51)


A business decision to abort projects with little or no chance at succeeding should be made as early as possible. The research on success of software engineering projects is fragmented and unorganized, which makes anticipating outcomes difficult and possibly error prone. This short paper offers a preliminary insight into success factors related to project outcomes that can be found at the midpoint of the development projects. We conducted a comparative case study where eight software development projects used the waterfall development method and four projects agile software development approaches as their primary development vehicle. Due to the explorative nature of the research, we conducted these in university settings. The results reveal that signs at project failure can be seen in the middle of the projects.


anticipation success factor software engineering project 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Marko Ikonen
    • 1
  • Pekka Abrahamsson
    • 1
  1. 1.University of HelsinkiFinland

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