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Agility and the Survey Life-Cycle - If and what survey practitioners can learn from software development 1

Coordinator 1Dr Yuri Pettinicchi (SHARE Berlin Institute)
Coordinator 2Dr Arne Bethmann (TU Munich / SHARE Germany)

Session Details

The increasing digitaliation of the survey process has led to many of the tasks surrounding the survey life-cycle resembling software development tasks more and more closely, e.g. programming questionnaires, data processing, automatic preparation of documentation. While survey practitoners and engineers are still often recruited from the social sciences rather than computer science, interest in learning from best practices in software development has increased in recent years. This includes adapting tools e.g. for bug tracking/ticketing or version control of documents and (meta)data, but also management processes like Agile Development.

This session invites anyone in the process of or already having implemented ideas from software development in survey practice to contribute and discuss their experiences. Some of the questions to pose could be, e.g.: Which ideas seem(ed) suitable? Did it work? What were the benefits or drawbacks? How did it need to be adapted in order to deal with the specific requirements of survey development? What tools did you use and why? Does an Agile workflow fit into the survey process traditionally rather organized in a waterfall model? Where are the software and the survey development life-cycle comparable? Where do they differ? How does that relate to the specifics of the survey at hand?