Robert Heumüller, Sebastian Nielebock, Jacob Krüger, Frank Ortmeier: Publish or Perish, but do not Forget your Software Artifacts. In: Empirical Software Engineering, 2020.

Abstract

Open-science initiatives have gained substantial momentum in computer science, and particularly in software-engineering research.
A critical aspect of open-science is the public availability of artifacts (e.g., tools), which facilitate the replication, reproduction, extension, and verification of results.
While we experienced that many artifacts are not publicly available, we are not aware of empirical evidence supporting this subjective claim.
In this article, we report an empirical study on software artifact papers (SAPs) published at the International Conference on Software Engineering (ICSE), in which we investigated whether and how researchers have published their software artifacts, and whether this had scientific impact.
Our dataset comprises 789 ICSE research track papers, including 604 SAPs (76.6,%), from the years 2007 to 2017.
While showing a positive trend towards artifact availability, our results are still sobering.
Even in 2017, only 58.5,% of the papers that stated to have developed a software artifact made that artifact publicly available.
As we did find a small, but statistically significant, positive correlation between linking to artifacts in a paper and its scientific impact in terms of citations, we hope to motivate the research community to share more artifacts.
With our insights, we aim to support the advancement of open science by discussing our results in the context of existing initiatives and guidelines.
In particular, our findings advocate the need for clearly communicating artifacts and the use of non-commercial, persistent archives to provide replication packages.

BibTeX (Download)

@article{sap2020,
title = {Publish or Perish, but do not Forget your Software Artifacts},
author = {Robert Heum\"{u}ller and Sebastian Nielebock and Jacob Kr\"{u}ger and Frank Ortmeier},
editor = {Springer},
url = {https://cse.cs.ovgu.de/cse-wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/2020-emse-paper-publish-or-perish.pdf},
doi = {10.1007/s10664-020-09851-6},
year  = {2020},
date = {2020-10-08},
journal = {Empirical Software Engineering},
abstract = {Open-science initiatives have gained substantial momentum in computer science, and particularly in software-engineering research.
A critical aspect of open-science is the public availability of artifacts (e.g., tools), which facilitate the replication, reproduction, extension, and verification of results.
While we experienced that many artifacts are not publicly available, we are not aware of empirical evidence supporting this subjective claim.
In this article, we report an empirical study on software artifact papers (SAPs) published at the International Conference on Software Engineering (ICSE), in which we investigated whether and how researchers have published their software artifacts, and whether this had scientific impact.
Our dataset comprises 789 ICSE research track papers, including 604 SAPs (76.6,%), from the years 2007 to 2017.
While showing a positive trend towards artifact availability, our results are still sobering.
Even in 2017, only 58.5,% of the papers that stated to have developed a software artifact made that artifact publicly available.
As we did find a small, but statistically significant, positive correlation between linking to artifacts in a paper and its scientific impact in terms of citations, we hope to motivate the research community to share more artifacts.
With our insights, we aim to support the advancement of open science by discussing our results in the context of existing initiatives and guidelines.
In particular, our findings advocate the need for clearly communicating artifacts and the use of non-commercial, persistent archives to provide replication packages.},
keywords = {Artifacts, Open Science, Open Source, Publishing, Software},
pubstate = {published},
tppubtype = {article}
}