We are witnessing the increasing importance of software in safety-critical applications, and the increasing demand for methods and tools for assuring that software can fulfill its functions in a safe manner. Safety-critical software adopted in critical domains such as avionics, space, railway, automotive, nuclear, air traffic control, and medical, in most cases have to undergo a formal assurance process to guarantee that the whole system (including the software) behaves safely, by complying to the requirements and guidelines indicated by safety regulations and standards (including, among the many, the DO-178C, ISO 26262, IEC 61508, and ESARR-6 standards for software/hardware systems).

The main challenge in the field of software certification is represented by the gap between safety standards and regulatory authorities on one hand and, on the other hand, the increasing complexity of software (in terms of amount, depth and criticality of functions implemented by the software) and the emergence of new technologies (such as multicore computing and virtualization), practices (such as agile, model-driven and OTS-based development), applications (e.g., driverless cars, remote healthcare) and threats (such as security vulnerabilities). The safety-critical industry as a whole followed for decades a conservative approach to safety: fearing the potential risks, regulatory authorities banned or discouraged the adoption of recent innovations and limited the complexity of functions allocated to software, which could otherwise provide a competitive advantage to industries. Therefore, both researchers and practitioners need to make safety assessment and certification approaches able to scale for complex safety-critical software, and to promote the adoption of recent technological advancements in real-world safety-critical systems through industrial and research projects. The workshop aims to support this kind of projects, and to disseminate novel results on the successful application of modern technologies and methodologies in safety-critical systems.

Workshop participants are invited to submit research papers to be presented and discussed at the workshop. Two types of submissions are solicited: (i) full papers, up to 6 pages, describing novel approaches and industrial case studies; and (ii) short papers, up to 3 pages, describing challenges and directions for future research, and in-progress industrial research projects. Topics of interest of the workshop include, but are not limited to:

  • Quantitative and qualitative evaluation of dependability, and product-oriented certification and assurance cases;
  • Design and evaluation of certifiable software according to the needs of modern complex systems, including dynamic, autonomic, large-scale, and distributed systems;
  • Selection, assessment, integration and development of third-party components in safety- and security-critical systems, and reuse of the software components across different systems and different safety standards;
  • Assessment and improvement of software development processes (e.g., SPICE, CMMI) in safety- and security-critical domains.
  • Cost-related issues and return-on-investment for development activities, including requirement analysis, design, V&V, and maintenance.
  • Adoption of emerging technologies (such as multicore computing and virtualization) and practices (such as agile and model-driven software development) in safety-critical systems.
  • Open issues, practical experiences and empirical studies on real-world case studies.
  • Cross-fertilization between safety and security standards and certification.

All submitted papers will be peer-reviewed by program committee members, and selected on the basis of the relevance, novelty, practicality, and presentation of ideas and case studies presented. Accepted papers will be published in a supplemental volume of the ISSRE conference proceedings by the IEEE Computer Society, and will appear on IEEE Xplore.

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