A Hybrid Method of Cognitive Mapping and Fuzzy Data Envelopment Analysis to Analyze the Delays in Software Projects

Document Type : Original Article


Department of Industrial Engineering, University of Kurdistan, Sanandaj, IRAN


Delay is one of the common events in software projects; In such a way, it is necessary to know the factors behind the delays of these projects and to determine their impact on achieving the set goals. The purpose of this research is to propose an intelligent method to analyze causal relationships between delay factors in software projects. In order to identify the delay factors, it has been tried to use the lessons learned, project documents, and the opinions of experts. A fuzzy cognitive map (FCM) is drawn to indicate the causal relationships between the delay factors and the evaluation factors. For the first time, a hybrid algorithm is used to identify the effect of each delay factor on the evaluation factors and prioritized them by applying fuzzy data envelopment analysis (FDEA). For this purpose, the causal relationships between 16 delay factors and four evaluation factors are considered. The results of the research show that “Unrealistic deadlines”, “Working on too many projects simultaneously” and “Unexpected risks” are the most important delay factors in software projects in Iran.


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