Awards - ICSE 2019 ACM SIGSOFT Distinguished Paper to Alexander Serebrenik


Paper co-authored by Alexander Serebrenik (Eindhoven University of Technology) has been selected as one of the ICSE 2019 ACM SIGSOFT Distinguished Paper awardees. Distinguished Papers represent the very best contributions to the ICSE Technical Track, and are awarded to up to 10% of the papers.

The paper, entitled "Going Farther Together: The Impact of Social Capital on Sustained Participation in Open Source", is co-authored Huilian Sophie Qiu (CMU, USA), Alexander Nolte (University of Tartu, Estonia), Anita Brown (Bryn Mawr College, USA), Alexander Serebrenik, Bogdan Vasilescu (CMU, USA). The authors have observed while sustained participation by contributors in open-source software can provide career advancement benefits to individual contributors, not all contributors reap the benefits of open-source participation fully, with prior work showing that women are particularly underrepresented and at higher risk of disengagement. While many barriers to participation in open-source have been documented in the literature, relatively little is known about how the social networks that open-source contributors form impact their chances of long-term engagement. In this paper the authors report on a mixed-methods empirical study of the role of social capital (i.e., the resources people can gain from their social connections) for sustained participation by women and men in open-source GitHub projects. After combining survival analysis on a large, longitudinal data set with insights derived from a user survey, the authors confirm that while social capital is beneficial for prolonged engagement for both genders, women are at disadvantage in teams lacking diversity in expertise.

The full paper is available here