Agile, Safety and Innovation – synergies and tensions when best practices meet in the development of software intensive systems

The interest for Agile development approaches has increased remarkably within industrial product development. Stemming originally from smaller scale software engineering, the approach has been adopted to larger scale development often involving software as well as hardware, frequently in conjunction with strict demands on quality and related non-functional aspects such as safety.

While the introduction of Agile is motivated by its perceived benefits, the use of Agile outside of the domain of software development has also raised a number of concerns. The idea for this workshop came about when we noticed studies and concerns being raised in a number of areas including integrated products (HW/SW), safety related systems, and innovation driven products. Many industrial companies are facing a similar situation. Some research studies have also investigated some of the concerns and approaches for combining Agile with other established processes.

The purpose of the workshop is consequently to highlight and discuss the identified concerns, tensions and ideas for how various best practices can be merged to form improved development processes. Given the ICES tradition of such networking events, we see strong potential for synergies and collaborative efforts to explore these synergies further.

The workshop is divided in two parts:

  • The morning offers inspirational talks with experiences and considerations for applying agile, tensions and potential synergies, with industrial and research contributions.


  • The afternoon is dedicated to a real workshop (using the so called World Cafe approach), where we will split into smaller work groups to discuss topics related to the workshop theme. Each group has a moderator and will report back to a plenary conclusion.


09:30-09:40: Introduction – Martin Törngren/Jaana Nyfjord/Jakob Axelsson

09:40-10:05: Agile and software development methods – State of the art, Jaana Nyfjord, SICS

10:05-10:45: Heaven or Hell - The marriage between IEC 61508 and Scrum - Tor Stålhane NTNU/SINTEF and Even-Andre Karlsson, Addalot

Coffee with refreshments

11:15-11:40: Development of Mechatronical products – what characterizes a useful development process? – Tor Ericsson/ÅF

11:40-12:05 Industrial Experience on Efficient Product Development - Dulce Goncalves/Combitech

12:05-12:30: Agile and Innovation – Jens Hemphälä

Conclusions and Discussion topics for the afternoon – Martin Törngren

LUNCH - 12:35-13:30

13:30-13:40: Deciding on discussion topics and forming work groups

13:40-16:10: Group discussions – including rotation and coffee (e.g. giving room for three groups, 3*45 min.)

16:10-16:55 Debriefs/reporting from group discussions

17:00 The workshop is concluded