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Evaluating Hazard Mitigations with Dependability Cases

April 2009 White Paper
Matthew R. Barry (Software Intensive Systems, Inc.), John B. Goodenough

In this 2009 paper, the authors present an example to show the value a dependability case adds to a traditional hazard analysis.

Abstract

There is growing interest in using a structure of claims, arguments, and evidence to explain why all critical software hazards have been eliminated or adequately mitigated in mission-critical and safety-critical systems. Such a structure has been called a dependability case, an assurance case, or a (goal-structured) safety case. Dependability cases are sometimes viewed as adding no extra value, e.g., given an existing hazard analysis, what is the added value of a dependability case showing how the hazard is mitigated? In this paper we present an example to show the value a dependability case adds to a traditional hazard analysis.