5th International Workshop on
Bots in Software Engineering

May 20th, 2023, Melbourne, Australia
In conjunction with ICSE 2023

Keynote Speakers

Paul Thomas

What do we know about conversation?

After years of promise conversational systems such as social chatbots, automated helpdesks, and chat-based search are hitting the mainstream. These systems are increasingly competent at the fundamentals of informational or social conversation: they are finally tracking topics across multiple turns, "understanding" many requests, and forming grammatical and coherent responses. So what else is there to do? Conversation without computers, of course, has been well-studied for decades. Research has analysed linguistic phenomena such as structure and semantics but also paralinguistic features such as tone, body language, and participants' physiological states. This work gives us some strong hints where we should focus next, as we try to build conversational agents which are fluent as well as grammatical, pleasant as well as correct. In this talk we'll take a quick tour through some past work, illustrated with examples, and discuss where things could (or should) be headed.

About the speaker: Paul is a senior applied scientist with Microsoft, where he works on the Bing search engine. His research interests are in how people use search systems and how we should evaluate these systems, as well as conversational interfaces for search systems. He serves on the steering committee for the Conference on Human Information Interaction and Retrieval, the programme committee for the Text Retrieval Conference (TREC), and many conferences and journals. He has previously worked at the CSIRO and the Australian National University.


09:00 - 10:30 Opening and Keynote

  • 09:00 - 09:15 Opening
  • 09:15 - 10:15 Keynote: What do we know about conversation?
    Paul Thomas

11:00 - 12:30 Session 1: Conversational Bots in SE

  • 11:00 - 11:20 Navigating Complexity in Software Engineering: A Prototype for Comparing GPT-n Solutions
    Christoph Treude

  • 11:20 - 11:40 (Invited) Towards Continuous Performance Assessment of Java Applications With PerfBot
    Florian Markusse, Alexander Serebrenik and Philipp Leitner

  • 11:40 - 12:00 Supporting Conversational Agent-Based Software Development
    Glaucia Melo, Luis Fernando Lins, Paulo Alencar and Donald Cowan

  • 12:00 - 12:20 Idiolect: A Reconfigurable Voice Coding Assistant
    Breandan Considine, Nicholas Albion and Xujie Si

13:45 - 15:15 Session 2: Bots Design and Challenges

  • 13:45 - 14:05 (Invited) From RSSE to BotSE: Potentials and Challenges Revisited after 15 Years
    Walid Maalej

  • 14:05 - 14:25 (Invited) Optimizing Workflow for Elite Developers: Perspectives on Leveraging SE Bots
    Zhendong Wang, Yi Wang and David Redmiles

  • 14:25 - 14:45 Bot With Interactions: Improving GitHub Pull-Request Feedback Through Two-Way Communication
    Zhewei Hu and Ed Gehringer

  • 14:45 - 15:05 (Journal-first Presentation) The Advantages of Maintaining a Multitask, Project-Specific Bot: An Experience Report
    Theo Zimmermann, Julien Coolen, Jason Gross, Pierre-Marie Pedrot and Gaetan Gilbert

15:45 - 17:15 Session 3: Bots in OSS

  • 15:45 - 16:05 Suggestion Bot: Analyzing the Impact of Automated Suggested Changes on Code Reviews
    Nivishree Palvannan and Chris Brown

  • 16:05 - 16:25 (Journal-first Presentation) Recognizing Bot Activity in Collaborative Software Development
    Mehdi Golzadeh, Tom Mens, Alexandre Decan, Eleni Constantinou and Natarajan Chidambaram

  • 16:25 - 16:45 (Journal-first Presentation) From Specialized Mechanics to Project Butlers: The Usage of Bots in Open Source Software Development
    Zhendong Wang, Yi Wang and David Redmiles

  • 16:45 - 17:00 Closing Ceremony
    Igor Steinmacher, Mairieli Wessel, Ahmad Abdellatif

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 work in progress papers, position papers, and experience reports. Work in progress papers are expected to describe new research results and make contributions to the body knowledge in the area. Position papers are expected to discuss controversial issues in the field, or describe interesting or thought provoking ideas that are not yet fully developed. 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. All submissions will be reviewed by at least three program committee members. Accepted submissions will be invited to give a talk to present their findings. Submissions 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, quality, safety, security, privacy and trustworthiness of software systems
  • Using bots to support software continuous integration, deployment and delivery
  • Using bots to enhance and support software testing & maintenance
  • Supporting and answering developer questions using bots
  • Issues related to the use of, or research on, SE bots (e.g. privacy, ethical, human-computer interaction)
  • Practical experiences in developing bots
  • Experiences on using bot frameworks in software systems

Important Dates

All deadlines are firm at the Anywhere on Earth (AoE):

  • Submission Deadline: 20 January 2023 (Updated)
  • Lightning Talks Submission Deadline: 1 March 2023
  • Acceptance Notification: 24 February 2023
  • Camera Ready: 17 March 2023

How to Submit (adapted from ICSE)

Submissions should be made via easychair by the submission deadline.

Submission must not exceed 4 pages, including all text, figures, tables, and appendices; one additional page containing only references is permitted. Each submission must conform to the IEEE conference proceedings template, specified in 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 options). For more information see here: https://www.ieee.org/conferences/publishing/templates.html

Proposal for lightning talks

We are soliciting presentation-only lightning talks.

Authors are asked to submit a short proposal that describes the main contributions of the lightning talk. Talk proposals should contain a brief abstract, place an emphasis on the motivation for the talk, and summarize contributions being presented. Proposals should not exceed 300 words and need to be submitted via easychair by the submission deadline.

All submitted abstracts will be peer-reviewed by members of the Programme Committee based on the criteria mentioned above.


Steering Committee

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

Organizing Committee

  • Igor Steinmacher - Northern Arizona University
  • Mairieli Wessel - Radboud University
  • Ahmad Abdellatif - Concordia University

Web Chair

  • Khaled Badran - Concordia University

Publicity Chair

  • Mariane Medeiros - Radboud University

Proceedings Chair

  • Mairieli Wessel - Radboud University

Program Committee

  • Rabe Abdalkareem, Carleton University, Canada
  • Chris Brown, Virginia Tech, USA
  • Nathan Casee, TU Eindhoven, Netherlands
  • Diego Costa, Universite du Quebec a Montreal, Canada
  • Linda Erlenhov, Chalmers University, Sweden
  • Marco Gerosa, Northern Arizona University, USA
  • Akinori Ihara, Wkayama University, Japan
  • Philipp Leitner, Chalmers University, Sweden
  • Tom Mens, University of Mons, Belgium
  • Esteban Parra Rodriguez, Florida State University, USA
  • Alexander Serebrenik, TU Eindhoven, Netherlands
  • Thanwadee Sunetnanta, Mahidol University, Thailand
  • Stefan Wagner, University of Stuttgart, Germany
  • Igor Wiese, Universidade Tecnologica Federal do Parana, Brazil