When architecting software systems, architects (with the contribution of other stakeholders) make several design decisions. These decisions could be related to the selection of the right components and connectors, the architectural style to be used, the distribution of various components, the deployment of software components into hardware devices, etc. Many methods have been proposed by the research community to help documenting several aspects of architectural design decisions including design alternatives, stakeholder concerns, decisions and the rationale for making such decisions and enhancing the decision-making process. Still, very little has been done to truly understand how architectural design decisions are made by group of practitioners, what information is documented, the tools used for helping documenting and how conflicts are managed. This study, by looking at principles and techniques for group decision making coming from other disciplines, aims to understand: a) how practitioners make group decisions in architecting software systems, b) how practiced group decision-making techniques relate to state-of-the-art techniques, and c) challenges companies face when making architecture-related group decisions. The study is conducted by using a questionnaire distributed to practitioners and researchers involved in group design decisions in industry. The results are used to drive some recommendations to improve the current group design decision process. © 2014 IEEE.
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V Smrithi Rekha and Muccini, Hb, “A study on group decision-making in software architecture”, in Proceedings - Working IEEE/IFIP Conference on Software Architecture 2014, WICSA 2014, Sydney, NSW, 2014, pp. 185-194.