Introducing the Chair of SI^NZ

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Who is Austen Rainer?

Austen was awarded BSc(Hons) Applied Psychology and Computing, and subsequently a PhD, both from Bournemouth University, U.K.  His work has been published in international peer-reviewed journals and conferences, such as Information and Software Technology, and the Journal of Systems and Software.

He is currently Head of Department of Computer Science and Software Engineering at University of Canterbury, New Zealand. He is General Chair for Evaluation and Assessment in Software Engineering (EASE2018).

Sounds great, but who is Austen, really?

In his own words, Austen “enjoys plotting to take over the world with his children”. When that isn’t happening, he enjoys spending time with his wife and two children (a boy aged 10 and a girl aged 7), and reading widely (philosophy, psychology, literature, history,…), reflective writing, and movies. Photography and art are his passions, check out some of his photography below! A lesser known but pretty awesome fact about Austen is he used to do ultra-long distance running, his best time being 100km in 14hrs!

Does he work with industry?

You bet! Austen has worked in collaboration with industry and end-users for over 20 years, on over 40 projects ranging from software process improvement to robot-mediated communication with children with autism.  These projects are drawn from the private, public and charitable sectors, from SMEs (small to medium businesses) through to corporates. All of his research is applied and undertaken in conjunction with the end-users who would benefit from that research.

What’s he doing now?

His current interests are in evidence based software engineering, particularly evidence and arguments of value to software practitioners (either those generated by practitioners or of relevance to practitioners). He co-authored the first discipline-specific book on case study research in software engineering.

Neat stuff, where can I get in touch with him?

LinkedIn would be a good place to start:


Photography by Austen Rainer