Call For Papers - Doctoral Symposium

Call for Papers - Doctoral Symposium 2018

The Doctoral Symposium will take place on October 15th, 2018 in Memphis, the day before the beginning of the main conference IEEE International Symposium on Software Reliability Engineering (ISSRE 2018).


The ISSRE 2018 Doctoral Symposium is intended to bring together PhD students working on the followings topics, and give them the opportunity to present and discuss their research in a constructive, friendly and international atmosphere. The goals of the symposium are:

  • To provide a setting for constructive feedback on participants' current research and guidance on future research directions;
  • To develop a supportive community of scholars and a spirit of collaborative research;
  • To provide an opportunity for student participants to interact with established researchers and others in the software reliability engineering community.

Selected students will present their work and receive constructive feedback both from a panel of experts from academia and the industry, and from other Doctoral Symposium students.

The students will also have the opportunity to seek advice on various aspects of completing a PhD, how to perform research, how to design and execute empirical research, etc. To this end, we plan to reserve one session in which the students will be split into small groups, according to the topics or stages of their PhDs, and have a direct conversation with one or more experts. Furthermore, we encourage the participant students to critique and discuss the research ideas of the remaining students. The proceedings of the Doctoral Symposium will be published in the supplementary conference proceedings of ISSRE 2018. The newly introduced Doctoral Symposium best paper award will distinguish the most outstanding early dissertation work.

Who should participate

Students at all stages (at the beginning, in the middle or near the end of their doctoral studies) who are working on a research area or a thesis topic relevant to ISSRE are encouraged to participate in the Doctoral Symposium.


Each submission consists of two elements:

  1. Research proposal: a 4-page paper describing your dissertation research to be authored by the student only, your advisor should be included in the acknowledgments.
  2. Letter of recommendation: ask your advisor to submit a letter of recommendation in support of your application. This letter should include your name, a candid assessment of the current status of your dissertation research, list of publications on your topic so far (if any), and an expected date for dissertation submission. The letter should be emailed to both Doctoral Symposium Co-Chairs ( and with the subject “ISSRE 2018 Doctoral Symposium Recommendation”.

Your research proposal should contain the following items: 1) a title for your work; 2) an abstract (maximum 200 words); 3) a main description of your research work that covers: a) the technical problem to be solved, a justification of its importance regarding to software reliability, and a set of research questions; b) related works; 4) the proposed approach, including a) the research methodology to achieve the research goals; b) a brief description of the work accomplished to date c) your timeline and milestones; c) possible threats to validity; 5) finally, the expected contributions of your dissertation research along with the tentative date of your thesis defense.

PhD students at an early stage should focus more on the technical problem to be solved, on the related works and on the motivations, than on the research approach, which should anyway be discussed in the paper. PhD students at a medium and advanced stage of their PhD should cover both the technical problem and the proposed approach. PhD students at an advanced stage may want to additionally discuss the impact of the contributions of their PhD work and the open challenges.  

All submissions must be original work, and must not have been previously published, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere.

Formatting guidelines

Papers must be written in English, and be formatted according to the IEEE Computer Society Format Guidelines .


Submissions will be reviewed by at least two members of the DS Panel of Experts. Authors of submissions selected for acceptance will have an opportunity to present their work during the DS and have the camera-ready version of their paper published in the ISSRE 2018 Supplementary Proceedings and the IEEE Xplore Digital Library. Attendance to the Doctoral Symposium is by invitation only, limited to the DS students, the DS Panel of Experts in order and invited experts to facilitate detailed feedback to the students.

All papers must be submitted electronically through the ISSRE 2018 Submission page. On this page, select the track "ISSRE 2018 Doctoral Symposium", and click "Continue" to open the submission form.


Important Dates

Deadline for submissions: July 21st, 2018
Notification of acceptance: August 13th, 2018
Camera-ready copy of paper due: August 28th, 2018
ISSRE 2018 Doctoral Symposium:  October 15th, 2018




Mei Nagappan, University of Waterloo, Canada (
Nuno Antunes, University of Coimbra, Portugal (

Invited Speaker

Mladen Vouk, North Carolina State University, US

Panel of Experts

  • Domenico Cotroneo, University of Naples Federico II, Italy
  • Ilir Gashi, City University of London, UK
  • Brendan Murphy, Microsoft Research, UK
  • Karthik Pattabiraman, University of British Columbia,Canada
  • Harigovind Ramasamy, IBM, US
  • Carol Smidts, Ohio State University, US