Software Engineering Institute | Carnegie Mellon University
Software Engineering Institute | Carnegie Mellon University

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The Restructuring and Refinancing of Technical Debt

  • This presentation was created for a conference series or symposium and does not necessarily reflect the positions and views of the Software Engineering Institute.
  • Abstract

    This presentation was part of the Seventh International Workshop on Managing Technical Debt, held in conjunction with the 31th International Conference on Software Maintenance and Evolution (ICSME 2015).

    Given the increasing importance of software to society, the issue of technical debt is becoming more pervasive in software development. Its implications range from incurring small amounts of technical debt to speed up development—a positive—to stalling and making development no longer possible—a huge negative. In this paper, we present a framework that attempts to refine the understanding of technical debt by tracing more links to the financial metaphor, specifically focusing on the concepts of restructuring and refinancing technical debt. This presentation looks at technical debt as a leverage product that is contingent upon the liquidity of the debtor. From this perspective, it is then possible to more effectively assess the incurment of technical debt and also to more effectively strategize the use of leverage in software development to account for the respective risks and benefits it provides.

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