CHASE becomes a (virtual) conference in 2021 – with Monash’s Rashina Hoda at the helm

10 June 2021

This year, the Cooperative and Human Aspects of Software Engineering (CHASE) entered its 14th year and graduated from being a workshop to a conference. It was co-located at the premier IEEE/ACM International Conference on Software Engineering (ICSE) and Rashina Hoda – Associate Professor in Monash’s Faculty of Information Technology – was proud to be at its helm.

Every year, CHASE opens an excellent avenue for fruitful discussions of emerging ideas and technologies – and this year was no exception. The only difference being that in 2021, CHASE became a full-fledged conference and took place online, co-located with the flagship ICSE conference

‘Organising an international conference virtually is not for the faint of heart,' said Program Chair, CHASE 2021, Associate Professor Hoda.

Associate Prof Hoda shared the Program Chair responsibilities with Dr Fabian Fagerholm, Aalto University, Finland while Associate Professor Anita Sarma, Oregon State University, USA and Dr Sabrina Marczak, PUCRS, Brazil served as the General Chairs.

‘Our core organising committee was spread across Australia, Europe and North and South Americas, which made coordination challenging.

‘However, our passion for delivering a high-quality, enriching and engaging experience for the wider CHASE research community kept us going.’

Since the original workshop’s inception 13 years ago, CHASE has provided a global forum for discussing high-quality research focusing on the human and social aspects of software engineering.

Held over four days, from 20 to 23 May, CHASE received more than 65 paper submissions this year. After rigorous peer review by an international program committee, 10 full papers, five short papers and nine notes were accepted, recording a competitive 26% acceptance rate – all of which formed the basis for live talks during the conference. Topics ranged from Ideology in Open Source Development to Gamification in Software Engineering.

Associate Professor Hoda joined Monash’s ever-expanding Faculty of IT in late 2019, after relocating from New Zealand where she was a Senior Lecturer in Software Engineering at the University of Auckland.

Since then, she has served as the Associate Dean (Academic Workforce) in the Faculty of IT. Associate Professor Hoda is also Deputy Director of Monash’s HumaniSE Lab – a cutting-edge research group that takes a human-centric approach to software engineering.

Previously, she delivered a TEDx Talk on New Zealand’s response to the Christchurch terror attack introducing the idea of ‘Agile Nation’ based on her research theories. In 2020, she extended the idea to examine the response of world nations to the global COVID-19 pandemic in a Monash Tech Talk with Even Leybourne, head of Business Agility Institute, Melbourne and Shane Hastie, lead at ICAgile. She also spoke at Melbourne Conversations about the potential of the online world as a place for genuine human connection.

Her dedication to inclusive, ethical and compassionate technology aligns with CHASE’s focus on the human aspects of software engineering.

With this in mind, Associate Professor Hoda was thrilled to see how CHASE 2021 – even in its online form – managed to foster such a strong sense of community.

‘If tools and techniques form the “brain” of software engineering research,’ she said, ‘then human aspects form its heart and soul.’