Requirements Reflection: Requirements as Runtime Entities

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Executive Summary

Computational reflection is a well-established technique that gives a program the ability to dynamically observe and possibly modify its behavior. To date, however, reflection is mainly applied either to the software architecture or its implementation. The authors know of no approach that fully supports requirements reflection - that is, making requirements available as run-time objects. Although there is a body of literature on requirements monitoring, such work typically generates run-time artifacts from requirements and so the requirements themselves are not directly accessible at run-time. In this paper, they define the notion of requirements reflection and set out a research agenda. Requirements reflection is important because software systems of the future will be self-managing and will need to adapt continuously to changing environmental conditions.

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