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Carnegie Mellon University | Software Engineering Institute

Watts S. Humphrey

Software Process Achievement Award

The IEEE Computer Society and the Software Engineering Institute recognize outstanding achievements in improving the ability of a target organization to create and evolve software-dependent systems.

The Watts S. Humphrey Software Process Achievement Award  is named for Watts S. Humphrey, known as the "Father of Software Quality." Humphrey, following a long career with IBM, served at the SEI from 1986 until his death in 2010. He dedicated the majority of his career to addressing problems in software development including software quality, programmer motivation and commitment, team process discipline, and how organizations can best support these. During Humphrey's tenure at the SEI, characteristics of best practices at the individual, team, and organizational levels were identified that laid the groundwork for the Personal Software Process, the Team Software Process, the Capability Maturity Model (CMM) for Software and, eventually, CMM Integration (CMMI). In 2005, Humphrey received the National Medal of Technology for his work in software engineering.

Questions should be directed to the Humphrey Award Coordinator.

Congratulations to Our 2020 Winner

Congratulations to our 2020 recipient, Rajendra Prasad of Accenture! Learn more about RP’s work at Accenture.

Congratulations to our 2020 recipient, Rajendra Prasad of Accenture!

Rajendra Prasad (RP) has been at the center of Fortune 500 companies’ digital transformations of their IT systems and application management for more than 26 years. As the global automation lead for Accenture, he is at the forefront of using the next generation of IT, AI and modern engineering to help companies realize maximum business value. RP believes that digital transformation through AI-powered automation is a holistic, enterprise-wide change management program that includes people, culture and process, not just technology. He can discuss how large organizations can successfully scale automation and AI by using his “4S Model”: simple, seamless, scalable, sustainable. He has brought together technology and deep industry experience to create myWizard, Accenture’s end-to-end delivery excellence and innovation platform. He can speak to how to execute business strategy through automation, AI, machine learning, DevOps, cloud, continuous innovation and building the talent pipeline.

RP has 15 approved patents to his credit and 120 patents filed worldwide.

Full bio:


The Humphrey Award nominee's productivity improvement must, to an exceptional degree, be significant, measured, sustained, and shared.

To be significant, the work must have a demonstrated impact on the target organizations' software engineering results (e.g., productivity increases, defect density for software reaching integration and test decreases, or rework percentage decreases, and by how much). It should also consider, as pertinent, the impact on the target organizations' management, workforce, and system development and maintenance processes (e.g., cycle time to address emergency tickets decreases and percentage of tickets correctly fixed on first try increases, and by how much).

Recognition by the IEEE Computer Society and the SEI

The award will be announced and recognized by both the IEEE Computer Society and the Software Engineering Institute (SEI), and recipients will receive an engraved, commemorative plaque. Recipients will also be required to produce an SEI technical report describing their accomplishments, which will be published on the SEI's website.

The award may be presented to an individual or a group.

Recipients are most often employees of the target organization. If not, recipients may work for an organization that provided software engineering process improvement benefits to the target organization. For example, the recipient organization may be an organization that provides services related to software engineering process improvement to the target organization, or it may be an association that supports activities related to software engineering process improvement that benefit one or more target organizations. The target organization may be for-profit, not-for-profit, or non-profit; may be an industrial, academic, or government organization or foundation; and need not be based in the United States.

The achievements being recognized can be the result of any type of process improvement activity.

In particular, they need not be based on a specific framework, model, or body of software engineering principles, practices, techniques, or methods.

The award nomination may be submitted by a group, or nominees may nominate themselves.

Award nominations must be seconded by a senior executive of the organization in which the nominated individual or group works and supported by a 12-page nomination package.