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Delegates Discuss Global Excellence in Software and Security at SEPG Europe 2011


Dublin, Ireland, hosted the Carnegie Mellon Software Engineering Institute (SEI) and more than 150 delegates for SEPG Europe 2011 on June 7-9. Delegates from 27 countries around the world participated in three days of rich discussions regarding the present and future of Global Excellence in Software and Security.

The official conference activities began on Tuesday with tutorials that explored concepts like Test Maturity Model Integration, CMMI V1.3 and architecture, ROI in process improvement from a probabilistic perspective, and an empirical and experimental approach to software process improvement. SEI-Certified SCAMPI Lead Appraisers also had the opportunity to complete the required upgrade training for SCAMPI V1.3.

“With more than 50 technical sessions across nine tracks, the SEPG Europe 2011 program offered sessions that appealed to delegates who are relatively new to the field as well as seasoned professionals,” noted Patrick Kirwan, SEPG Europe 2011 technical program co-chair. “The program examined software from a holistic perspective by emphasizing not only process and performance improvement, but also architecture and software security. The well-rounded program gave delegates practical advice as well as inspirational vision to help them deliver solid customer results.”

SEPG Europe 2011 was not just about the technical program, but also quality networking. On Tuesday evening, the SEPG Europe 2011 exhibiting companies unveiled their displays and exchanged ideas and solutions with delegates at the exhibits opening reception.

Global Leaders Educate, Inform, and Inspire
The program on Wednesday opened with remarks from Paul Nielsen, director and CEO, SEI, who introduced keynote speakers James Over of the SEI and Martin Curley of Intel Labs Europe.

Over, a leader of the TSP initiative at the SEI, connected space flight, surgery, and baseball to software engineering to illustrate the notion that failure is not an option. He urged the delegates to realize that defects do not have to be an inherent, unavoidable property of software engineering. 

Curley spoke about the IT Capability Maturity Framework (IT-CMF) and Innovation Value Institute (IVI), a consortium of more than 50 organizations that strives to help CIOs achieve increased, measurable value from IT. Curley lauded the SEI’s and CMMI’s wide-reaching impact and ability to reinvent, as CMMI’s legacy led to the development of the IT-CFM.  He emphasized that assessments can be run efficiently and with low overhead through use of standardized tools and documents.

During the gala reception on Wednesday evening, SEPG Europe 2011 delegates had an opportunity to network in a more relaxed environment and earn a special certification that had nothing to do with maturity levels. This certification was issued by the Guinness Storehouse to any delegate who learned how to pour the perfect pint of Ireland’s signature beer.

Anita Carleton, director of the SEPM Program at the SEI, opened the Thursday program by introducing the keynote speakers. Alexander Springer of Robert Bosch GmbH talked about how the right habits and paradigms help to manage daily business challenges and interpret institutionalism. Using his experience as director of passive safety systems and experience with automotive airbag systems, Springer shared how after eight years of process work, Bosch made a habit of acting according to defined and stable processes. Springer advised the delegates that everything should be clearly stated, teams should have processes and stick to them, and integrity should be a higher priority than profit. He urged the delegates to make excellence not an act, but a habit.

The final keynote speaker, Bill Curtis of CAST, presented a quadrant for categorizing maturity models that illustrated the difference between organizationally-based and best practice-based models. Curtis summarized his view of successful process improvement by noting that winners have better people, but not all winners are champions. Therefore, while winners have better people, champions have better organized people. Curtis concluded with the notion that dynasties have better organizations, which is what well-designed maturity models achieve.

Celebrate ¡A Passion for Process! in June 2012
SEPG Europe 2011 technical program co-chairs Patrick Kirwan and Alan Willett unveiled the location of SEPG Europe 2012, inviting delegates to come to Madrid, Spain, in June 2012. With the theme ¡A Passion for Process!, the 17th annual SEPG Europe conference will give delegates the chance to experience and share the passion for process improvement in the capital city and the economic, social, and cultural engine of Spain.

SEPG is the premier global conference series on software and systems process management, and dates and locations have been set for future SEPG Conferences around the world. SEPG North America 2012 will be held in Albuquerque, New Mexico, in March 2012.