An Introduction to Software Ecosystems

Tom Mens, Coen De Roover

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


This chapter defines and presents the kinds of software ecosystems that are targeted in this book. The focus is on the development, tooling, and analytics aspects of “software ecosystems,” i.e., communities of software developers and the interconnected software components (e.g., projects, libraries, packages, repositories, plug-ins, apps) they are developing and maintaining. The technical and social dependencies between these developers and software components form a socio-technical dependency network, and the dynamics of this network change over time. We classify and provide several examples of such ecosystems, many of which will be explored in further detail in the subsequent chapters of the book. The chapter also introduces and clarifies the relevant terms needed to understand and analyze these ecosystems, as well as the techniques and research methods that can be used to analyze different aspects of these ecosystems.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSoftware Ecosystems
Subtitle of host publicationTooling and Analytics
EditorsTom Mens, Coen De Roover, Anthony Cleve
Number of pages29
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-031-36060-2
ISBN (Print)978-3-031-36059-6
Publication statusPublished - 6 Oct 2023


  • software ecosystems
  • software engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'An Introduction to Software Ecosystems'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this