Call for Papers: Special Issue on Digitalization of Smart Ecosystems

IEEE Software seeks submissions for this upcoming special issue.
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Submissions Due: 15 April 2024

Important Dates

  • Submission deadline: 15 April 2024

Publication: January/February 2025

In order to remain competitive, organizations across several industries must respond with efficient use of  energy and resources and short production cycles. Digitalization contributes to addressing such responses  by attaining unparalleled automation levels across diverse sectors and has become relevant for Smart  Ecosystems. Smart Ecosystems represent decentralized and flexible sociotechnical systems characterized  by self-organization, scalability, and sustainability. Ecosystems today remain dynamic and demand the  orchestration of a plethora of technologies (such as IoT, Big Data, additive manufacturing, digital twins,  simulation, elastic computing, robotics, and machine learning) with the aim of elevating quality standards  in several domains, such as automotive, military, citizen infrastructure, energy, building, among others.  

Currently, in the military realm, NATO and the EU are implementing digital strategies, while the energy  sector is investing in IoT, connectivity, and data hubs. Similarly, the building and construction industry  emphasizes technology adoption for enhanced productivity and the automation of its processes and  excelling of building information modeling (BIM). This trend also extends to the automotive domain, with  IoT and cloud integration reshaping vehicles, and to the smart cities, where data-driven approaches refine  urban living for better sustainability and resource management. Today, smart ecosystems aim to improve  time-to-market and cost reductions but also to reduce carbon emissions from operations while bolstering  sustainability efforts.  

Nowadays, the challenge of building Smart Ecosystems requires the integration of various technologies  that make it possible to automate production processes to the fullest. Hence, Smart Ecosystems behave  with varying degrees of autonomy, forming what has been called smart digital ecosystems. These  collaborative ecosystems require a holistic approach where partnerships between multiple businesses  and organizations work together to solve issues and build integrated solutions.  

Nevertheless, the diversity of digital actors involved in these different industrial sectors requires bespoke  solutions where no single ecosystem serves. As the nature of industries is different, digitalizing the  production processes in some of them turns hard and complex, and the solutions used in certain domains  are hardly transferable to others. The diversity of application domains and technologies brings a broad  range of requirements that must be met to achieve business goals. Additionally, the plethora of  technologies required in the construction of smart digital ecosystems demand a high level of  interoperability and integration of different technologies. In this light, the aim of this special issue is to shed light to clarify the techniques and technologies that make possible the development of digital  ecosystems to solve industrial challenges.  

We invite article submissions covering all aspects of digitization of smart ecosystems including, but not  limited to:  

  • Industry 4.0 architectures for smart digital ecosystems 
  • Software platforms and techniques for accelerating the implementation and deployment of  smart digital ecosystems 
  • Quality models influencing the development and selection of smart digital ecosystems
  • Algorithms and machine learning solutions to optimize Industry 4.0 solutions
  • Integrated IoT solutions to support the digitalization of software factories  
  • Integration and interoperability challenges using digital twins in smart ecosystems
  • Continuous engineering practices (e.g., continuous quality monitoring, CI/CD, DevOps, BizDev,  MLOps) for building digital ecosystems 
  • Predictive maintenance solutions involving the notion of digital ecosystems 
  • Smart ecosystems for autonomous systems  
  • Case studies reporting industrial experience in specific application domains (e.g. ,automotive,  production, energy, healthcare, pharmaceutical, military, manufacturing,, smart cities, civil  engineering, etc) describing the use of smart ecosystems and digital advances 

Submission Guidelines

Manuscripts must not exceed 4,200 words, including figures and tables, which count for 250 words each. Submissions in excess of these limits may be rejected without refereeing. The articles we deem within the theme and scope will be peer reviewed and are subject to editing for magazine style, clarity, organization, and space. Be sure to include the name of the theme you’re submitting for. Articles should have a practical orientation and be written in a style accessible to practitioners. Overly complex, purely research-oriented, or highly theoretical aren’t appropriate, however articles providing scientific evidence are welcome if they focus on practical and industrial contexts. IEEE Software doesn’t republish material published previously in other venues, including other periodicals and formal conference or workshop proceedings, whether previous publication was in print or electronic form.



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