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110 - Hans Sassenburg wins Aart Bosman Prize for best IT research

On Thursday 1 November, Prof. Henk Sol, chair of the jury and Dean of the Faculty of Economics and Business, announced the winner of the 2007 Aart Bosman Prize: Dr Hans Sassenburg. Sassenburg’s PhD thesis focused on the dilemma faced by software producers: when to release newly developed software. Releasing products too soon increases the chances of errors and the inevitable consequences of this, but if they wait too long they give the competition too much room. In its report, the jury praised the comprehensiveness of Sassenburg’s research.

The Bosman Prize of EUR 4,000 is awarded once every two years for the best PhD thesis defence in the field of Information Systems at a Belgian or Dutch university. The prize is named after Emeritus Professor Aart Bosman of the RUG, pioneer and founder of the field of Information Systems in the Netherlands.

Sassenburg’s research

The jury selected two finalists from all the candidates for the 2007 Bosman Prize. On 1 November they gave brief presentations about their PhD research during a festive meeting partly dedicated to important scientific developments in the field of Information Systems. The jury then chose Hans Sassenburg (1960). Sassenburg, who is currently working as a researcher for the Software Engineering Institute and as an investor and coach for starting businesses, conducted his prize-winning research in the Department of Business & ICT of the faculty. He gained his PhD on 5 January 2006.

In his study of ten organizations, Sassenburg found that software producers often make their decisions regarding the release of new products on the basis of intuition. He subsequently developed a methodology that producers can use to make these decisions in a more structured and well-founded manner.

Jury report

What is striking in Hans Sassenburg’s research is the comprehensive way it was conducted, said the jury. He not only studied a lot of literature but also examined many organizations, thereby creating a bridge between the economic and the behavioural-scientific approaches. In addition, he developed a methodology. Not only was it one of the most extensive entries, it was also conducted very quickly, in 2.5 years.

Dr J.A. Sassenburg - Design of a Methodology to Support Software Release Decisions: Do the Numbers Really Matter?

Note for the press

More information:
Prof. Henk Sol, chair of the jury and Dean of the Faculty of Economics and Business, e-mail:, tel. +31 50 363 3825    

Last modified:11 October 2016 10.09 a.m.

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