Transactions on Software Engineering

The IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering (TSE) is an archival journal published bimonthly. We are interested in well-defined theoretical results and empirical studies that have potential impact on the construction, analysis, or management of software. Read the full scope of TSE.

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From the February 2018 Issue

A Templating System to Generate Provenance

By L. Moreau, B. V. Batlajery, T. D. Huynh, D. Michaelides and H. Packer

Featured article thumbnail image PROV-TEMPLATE is a declarative approach that enables designers and programmers to design and generate provenance compatible with the prov standard of the World Wide Web Consortium. Designers specify the topology of the provenance to be generated by composing templates, which are provenance graphs containing variables, acting as placeholders for values. Programmers write programs that log values and package them up in sets of bindings, a data structure associating variables and values. An expansion algorithm generates instantiated provenance from templates and sets of bindings in any of the serialisation formats supported by prov. A quantitative evaluation shows that sets of bindings have a size that is typically 40 percent of that of expanded provenance templates and that the expansion algorithm is suitably tractable, operating in fractions of milliseconds for the type of templates surveyed in the article. Furthermore, the approach shows four significant software engineering benefits: separation of responsibilities, provenance maintenance, potential runtime checks and static analysis, and provenance consumption. The article gathers quantitative data and qualitative benefits descriptions from four different applications making use of prov-template. The system is implemented and released in the open-source library ProvToolbox for provenance processing.

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Editorials and Announcements


  • We are pleased to announce that Nenad Medvidović, a Professor in the Computer Science Department and in the Informatics Program at the University of Southern California, has been selected as the new Editor-in-Chief of the IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering starting in 2018.
  • TSE now offers authors access to Code Ocean. Code Ocean is a cloud-based executable research platform that allows authors to share their algorithms in an effort to make the world’s scientific code more open and reproducible. Learn more or sign up for free.
  • According to Clarivate Analytics' 2016 Journal Citation Report, TSE has an impact factor of 3.272.


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