3rd International Workshop on
Bots in Software Engineering

Going virtual June 4th, 2021
In conjunction with ICSE 2021

Keynote Speakers

Paige Rodeghero

Bots for Productivity and Remote Work

This keynote will discuss how software engineers can effectively use bots, including how bots can and could continue to increase productivity and how bots could improve remote work. As the workforce has dramatically shifted in the last year, the use of bots and how we think about them should follow suit. I will cover recent literature, including my previous work on chatbots, and discuss future next steps for the research community.

About the speaker: Paige Rodeghero is an Assistant Professor of Computer Science at Clemson University. She obtained her Ph.D. in Computer Science and Engineering from the University of Notre Dame under the direction of Collin McMillan. Her main research interest is in software engineering, focused on productivity, remote work, onboarding, source code comprehension, computer science education, and software engineering for autism. In 2020, she was a visiting researcher at Microsoft Research. She has won multiple best paper awards, including two ACM SIGSOFT Distinguished Paper Awards. Previously to her research career, she worked in the industry as a lead software engineer for a startup company and as a software engineer at multiple medium-sized companies.

Claudio Pinhanez

Chatbots: Some Design Guidelines and How to Best Support Their Collaborative Development

I will review findings from our recent studies regarding design guidelines for chatbots and about work practices of professional developers and curators. Most of the results were obtained in the context of customer service chatbots, but I will discuss which ones may be valid for other domains, such as entertainment bots and professional conversational assistants. I will also discuss bot development as a highly collaborative practice which tends to be poorly supported by the current tools and platforms. Based on some concrete case studies, I will make suggestions on how to better support developers and curators.

About the speaker: Claudio Pinhanez is a scientist, innovator, and professor. He has been with IBM Research since 1999, and today leads research in Conversational Intelligence in the laboratory of IBM Research in Brazil. He is an expert in artificial intelligence, human-machine interaction, conversational systems, and service science. He has more than 120 papers published in journals and scientific conferences, and more than 20 patents issued in the USA, Europe, and Japan.


(All times shown below are in CEST)

Opening and Keynote

  • 14:00 - 14:15 Opening
  • 14:15 - 15:00 (30 Talk + 15 Q&A) Keynote: Bots for Productivity and Remote Work
    Paige Rodeghero (Clemson University)

Session 1: Bots' Effects on Human Behavior

  • 15:00 - 15:15 (10 Talk + 5 Q&A) Do Bots Modify the Workflow of GitHub Teams?
    Samaneh Saadat, Natalia Colmenares and Gita Sukthankar

  • 15:15 - 15:30 (10 Talk + 5 Q&A) Bots Don't Mind Waiting, Do They? Comparing the Interaction With Automatically and Manually Created Pull Requests
    Marvin Wyrich, Raoul Ghit, Tobias Haller and Christian Muller

  • 15:30 - 15:45 (10 Talk + 5 Q&A) Nudging Students Toward Better Software Engineering Behaviors
    Chris Brown and Chris Parnin

  • 15:45 - 16:05 Open discussion

Break (10 mins)

Session 2: Bots Helping Software Development

  • 16:15 - 16:30 (10 Talk + 5 Q&A) Journal-first Presentation: A Ground-truth Dataset and Classification Model for Detecting Bots in GitHub Issue and PR Comments
    Mehdi Golzadeh, Alexandre Decan, Damien Legay and Tom Mens

  • 16:30 - 16:45 (10 Talk + 5 Q&A) SAW-BOT: Proposing Fixes for Static Analysis Warnings with GitHub Suggestions
    Dragos Serban, Bart Golsteijn, Ralph Holdorp and Alexander Serebrenik

  • 16:45 - 17:00 (10 Talk + 5 Q&A) Identifying bot activity in GitHub pull request and issue comments
    Mehdi Golzadeh, Alexandre Decan, Eleni Constantinou and Tom Mens

  • 17:00 - 17:15 (10 Talk + 5 Q&A) Designing a Bot for Efficient Distribution of Service Requests
    Arkadip Basu and Kunal Banerjee

  • 17:15 - 17:35 Open discussion

Break (10 mins)


  • 17:45 - 18:30 (30 Talk + 15 Q&A) Keynote: Chatbots: Some Design Guidelines and How to Best Support Their Collaborative Development
    Claudio Pinhanez

Session 3: Chatbots Design and Challenges

  • 18:30 - 18:45 (10 Talk + 5 Q&A) Towards a question answering assistant for software development using a transformer-based language model
    Liliane Nascimento Vale and Marcelo de Almeida Maia

  • 18:45 - 19:00 (10 Talk + 5 Q&A) iContractBot: A chatbot for Smart Contracts' Specification and Code Generation
    Ilham Qasse, Shailesh Mishra and Mohammad Hamdaqa

  • 19:00 - 19:15 (10 Talk + 5 Q&A) Testing NLP-intensive bots: challenges and roadmap
    Jordi Cabot, Loli Burgueno, Robert Clariso, Gwendal Daniel, Jorge Perianez-Pascual and Roberto Rodriguez-Echeverria

  • 19:15 - 19:35 Open discussion

  • 19:35 - 19:50 Closing

Call for Papers
International Workshop on Bots in Software Engineering

Bots (short for software robots) are software applications that perform often repetitive or simple tasks. In particular, social and chat bots interacting with humans are a recent research topic. Similarly, bots can be used to automate many tasks that are performed by software practitioners and teams in their day-to-day work. Recent work argue that bots can save developers' time and significantly increase productivity. Therefore, the goal of this one-day workshop is to bring together software engineering researchers and practitioners to discuss the opportunities and challenges of bots in software engineering. We solicit 4 page, research, experience report and position papers. Research papers are expected to describe new research results and make contributions to the body knowledge in the area. Experience reports are expected to describe experiences with (amongst other things) the development, deployment, and maintenance of bot-based systems in the software engineering domain. Position papers are expected to discuss controversial issues in the field, or describe interesting or thought provoking ideas that are not yet fully developed. Papers will be reviewed by at least three program committee members. Accepted research and experience report papers will be invited to give a talk to present their findings. Authors of accepted position papers will be invited to give a short lightning talk. Papers may address issues along the general themes, including but not limited, to the following topics:

  • Using bots to derive software requirements and documentation
  • Using bots in the context of the reliability and quality of software systems
  • Using bots to support software system release and deployment
  • Using bots to enhance and support testing & maintenance of software systems
  • Supporting and answering developer questions using bots
  • Using bots to ensure the safety, security, privacy and trustworthiness of software systems
  • Effective processes for the development of bot-based software
  • Privacy and ethics issues related to the use of bots in software systems
  • Issues in the interaction of bots and developers and other stakeholders
  • Experiences using bot frameworks in software systems

How to Submit (adapted from ICSE)

Submission must not exceed 4 pages, including all text, figures, tables, and appendices; one additional page containing only references is permitted. Submissions must conform to the IEEE Conference Proceedings Formatting Guidelines (title in 24pt font and full text in 10pt type, LaTeX users must use \documentclass[10pt,conference]{IEEEtran} without including the compsoc or compsocconf option).
The submission must also comply with the ACM plagiarism policy and procedures. In particular, submissions must not have been published elsewhere and must not be under review elsewhere. The submission must also comply with the IEEE Policy on Authorship.
Submissions to the workshop can be made via easychair by the submission deadline.
If a submission is accepted, at least one author of the paper is required to attend the workshop and present the paper in person. All accepted workshop papers will be published in the proceedings by IEEE CS.

Important Dates

  • Submissions due: Jan 12, 2021 Jan 19, 2021 (updated)
  • Notifications: Feb 22, 2021
  • Camera-ready due: March 12, 2021


Steering Committee

  • Stefan Wagner - University of Stuttgart
  • Marco A. Gerosa - Northern Arizona University
  • Emad Shihab - Concordia University

Organizing Committee

  • Stefan Wagner - University of Stuttgart
  • Marco A. Gerosa - Northern Arizona University
  • Mairieli Wessel - University of Sao Paulo

Proceedings Chair

  • Mairieli Wessel - University of Sao Paulo

Web Chair

  • Ahmad Abdellatif - Concordia University

Publicity Chair

  • Marvin Wyrich - University of Stuttgart

Program Committee

  • Martin Monperrus - KTH Royal Institute of Technology
  • Riccardo Scandariato - Hamburg University of Technology
  • Thomas Zimmermann - Microsoft
  • Abram Hindle - University of Alberta
  • Nicole Novielli - University of Bari
  • Bogdan Vasilescu - Carnegie Mellon University
  • Philipp Leitner - Chalmers University
  • Sonia Haiduc - Florida State University
  • Andreas Schreiber - German Aerospace Center - Koln
  • Linda Erlenhov - Chalmers University
  • Alexander Serebrenik - Eindhoven University of Technology
  • Tom Mens - University of Mons
  • Anthony Ventresque - University College Dublin
  • Chris Brown - North Carolina State University
  • Igor Steinmacher - Northern Arizona University
  • Diego Elias Costa - Concordia University
  • Shivali Agarwal - IBM, India Research Lab
  • Carolyn Rose - Carnegie Mellon University
  • Jordi Cabot - Open University of Catalonia