Sven Apel

Sven Apel, Prof. Dr.
Professor of Computer Science
Chair of Software Engineering
Saarland Informatics Campus
Saarland University

Room:  2.11
Mail:  Saarland University, Campus E1.1, 66123 Saarbr├╝cken, Germany
Phone:  +49 681 302 57211
Fax:  +49 681 302 57212
E-mail:  apel @
Curriculum vitae, short bio, DBLP, Google Scholar, ACM, ORCiD
Our viewpoint article on researching programming in the Neuroage appeared in Communications of the ACM, the flagship publication of the ACM!
Congruence: Project on socio-technical congruence accepted for funding by the DFG.
Christian Kästner, Martin Kuhlemann, and I received the Software Product Line Most Influential Paper Award for our ICSE'08 Paper “Granularity in Software Product Lines”.

A key vision driving my research is to empower software engineering practice to enter an era of intensive automation. I develop and evaluate methods, tools, and theories for the construction of manageable, reliable, efficient, configurable, and evolvable software systems. In particular, I am interested in:

  • Software product lines and configurable systems
  • Domain-specific generation and optimization
  • Software analytics and intelligence
  • Empirical methods and the human factor in software engineering

I apply my research results routinely to real-world software systems and projects from different domains, in particular, data-intensive, operating, and high-performance computing systems, both from the open-source realm or in collaborations with partners from industry, such as Siemens AG, Bosch Austria, Airbus Helicopters, and Fraunhofer IESE.

Awards & Honors
Congruence (DFG, 620 000 Euro, 2020–2023)
Pervolution (DFG, 290 000 Euro, 2017–2020)
ExaStencils (DFG, SPP 1648, 510 000 Euro, 2013–2018)
SafeSPL++ (DFG, Heisenberg Program, 660 000 Euro, 2013–2018)
Pythia (DFG, SPP 1593, 700 000 Euro, 2012–2017)
FeatureOpt (FFG, 100 000 Euro, 2015–2018)
Software Intelligence (Siemens AG, 50 000 Euro, 2013–2016)
SafeSPL (DFG, Emmy-Noether Program, 1 300 000 Euro, 2010–2015)
MapReduceFoundation (DFG, 160 000 Euro, 2011–2013)
FeatureFoundation (DFG, 320 000 Euro, 2009–2013)
IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering, Member of Editorial Board
Empirical Software Engineering, Member of Editorial Board
IEEE Software, Member of Editorial Board
(complete list)
Dagstuhl Seminars
Sven Apel, Joanne Atlee, Luciano Baresi, and Pamela Zave. Feature Interactions: The Next Generation (No. 14281). July 6th – 11th, 2014.
Sven Apel, William R. Cook, Krzysztof Czarnecki, and Oscar Nierstrasz. Feature-Oriented Software Development (No. 11021). January 9th – 14th, 2011.
Sven Apel, Don Batory, Goetz Graefe, Gunter Saake, and Olaf Spinczyk. Software Engineering for Tailor-made Data Management (No. 08281). July 06th – 11th, 2008.
Selected Publications
(complete list)

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FeatureHouse: Language-Independent Feature Composition cppstats: Analyzing C Preprocessor Directives
JDime: Structured Merge of Software Versions SPL Conqueror: Performance Prediction of Software Variants
SPLverifier: Variability-Aware Model Checking TypeChef: Variability-Aware Static Analysis
FeatureVisu: Layout-Based Feature Clustering Codeface: Project Analysis and Dashboard Framework
FeatureIDE: Feature-Oriented Software Development Fuji: Feature-Oriented Programming in Java
CIDE: Virtual Separation of Concerns
Teaching & Students
I am among the 49 ACM Distinguished Members that were recognized in 2018 by the Association for Computing Machinery for contributions that have revolutionized how we live, work, and play.
Times Higher Education features our research on double-blind reviewing (see also the original article in Communications of the ACM).
Network Science Offers New Perspective on Developer Roles in Open Source SoftwareIEEE Software blog.
My keynote at MODULARITY 2016 is available at YouTube.
Co.LABS Article: This Is Your Brain On Code, According To Functional MRI Imaging
Huffington Post Article: Chris Parnin summarizes our fMRI research: Scientists Begin Looking at Programmers' Brains: The Neuroscience of Programming. See also the discussion thread at Slashdot.
Tech Talk on Variability-Aware Analysis at GPCE'12
Interview on FOSD at Software Engineering Radio: Part 1 and Part 2
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