About GSE: Global Software Engineering

Global Software Engineering

The European Global Software engineering Master program, or simply GSEEM, is a joint master program between the University of L'Aquila, Italy (UDA), the VU University Amsterdam, The Netherlands (VUA), and the Malardalen University, Sweden (MDH) focusing on Global Software Engineering.

Global Software Engineering (GSE) is a new and rapidly growing research and practice area, in which the global aspects of complex software development are addressed. Due to globalization of the market, software is now produced in a distributed way, and outsourced to different companies. Already ten years ago there was an upward trend in software industry globalisation. Today there is no service- or product-development company that runs a successful business without global software development. There are many reasons for that: needs for expertise (in one place it is difficult to find the excellence needed for competitive development), development costs (in some countries labour is less expensive), needs for product diversity and local adjustments (products need to be adjusted to local languages, cultures, laws), and increasing efficiency (achieving 24-hours work by virtue of different time zones). In the late nineties, when many US and EU companies started to outsource development, or build up development centres in Asia, distribution of software development ran into many problems, due to technical, social and cultural, organisational, and communication reasons. These four aspects characterize GSE, and differentiate it from traditional- or merely distributed software engineering.

GSE Challenges

Many companies became successful in GSE in the hard way, while many others still encounter inefficiencies and experience costly challenges [source: Gartner, Key Issues for IT Services Sourcing, 2011]. GSE, different from a standard software engineering, faces important challenges due the lack of inter-disciplinary competencies addressing technical and socio-cultural issues at the same time. The European labour market is especially skilled in each competence apart; thought, there is urgent needs to train graduates to address them together. To this end, GSE higher education is of the essence.


SE (and by this GSE) can address many business areas. In GSEEM we chose to focus on "Internet of Things", i.e. the most important aspects of a modern society in a globalised world, as well as in the local infrastructure. We realise that through three components in the integrated approach: Embedded Systems, Web Software Services and associated Analysis for quality control.
The newest trend in high-technology development is a total integration of heterogeneous systems and services, such as integration of environment monitoring systems with traffic control systems, vehicular systems (planes, trains, cars), business systems, production plants, and the like. All these systems are developed in a global manner; e.g. AirBus is the development result of tens of Centres of Excellence and hundreds of services offices; Ericsson has tens of research and development centres in the world. Mastering development in a global space is not only the way to get competitive advantage, but a question of survival on the global market. Another example is globalised and integrated e-health systems which provide support for fast and accurate diagnoses over the Internet using powerful Cloud services. A third example are social-network systems (such as Twitter), that still for a convincing communication requires a) better knowledge about users' socio-cultural background, b) better knowledge in tailoring such systems (to form and to meet the requirements on security, privacy, performance). According to the World's largest marker research resource "Research and Markets Ltd" global software market grew by 7.1% in 2010 to reach a value of $265.4 billion. In 2015, the global software market is forecast to have a value of $356.7 billion, an increase of 34.4% since 2010. A need for new methods and approaches in GSE is also visible by a rapid impact increase of the IEEE International Conference on Global Software Engineering.