Distinguished Paper Award for Jurgen Vinju and Alexander Serebrenik

At the 39th International Conference on Software Engineering in Buenos Aires, M&CS Full Professor Jurgen Vinju and Associate Professor Alexander Serebrenik have been awarded with the ACM SIGSOFT Distinguished Paper Award for their paper "Challenges for Static Analysis of Java Reflection- Literature Review and Empirical Study". Vinju and Serebrenik collaborated as co-authors of this paper with lead author Davy Landman, researcher at Centrum Wiskunde & Informatica (CWI). Only 6 of the 415 entries received this remarkable recognition.

In the paper, Landman, Serebrenik and Vinju have studied Java software systems making use of the Reflection API, and surveyed the approaches capable of analyzing behavior of such systems and assumptions made by these approaches. Then they analyzed how real world Java code uses the Reflection API, and how often real-world Java code violates the assumptions of the aforementioned analysis approaches. The paper provides strategies for software engineers to improve robustness of software, and for static analysis tool builders a list of opportunities to have significant impact on real Java code.

The evaluation committee shared some appreciating words while presenting the Distinguished Paper Award to Landman, Serebrenik and Vinju. They were impressed by the soundness of the paper, stating: “The design and conduct of the studies make the results much more reliable and trustworthy”, while they believe the results will make an impact: “The implications are extremely actionable.”