Why should I become a partner
Being a project partner provides several benefits should you be either a researcher or a representative of an organization interested in financing the survey in you country.
For researchers, partnership in the survey project provides several benefits, for example valuable data extracting mechanism and visibility in software industry.
Data for research
The survey generates data that is considered highly valuable especially for academic research. The data provides firm-level information from all participating countries each year and covers questions on several area, for example entrepreneurship, product development, and innovations. Therefore it offers researchers a valuable tool to produce high-quality research, and several conference and journal papers as well as master's theses and dissertations has been written by using the data produced by the survey (list of publications written by using the survey data is available here). Furthermore, the results of a single country analyses are easy to publish in software industry trade press.
As a research partner, you get access to all the data the survey generates during the years of partnership. This covers data from all participating countries. Furthermore, you get to participate to questionnaire development and that way can taylor the data to fit directly to your purposes. By participating in running the survey in more than a single year, you get to obtain longitudinal data on the firm level. The data is linked to company identification codes that allows you to track the changes in single firms over time. This type of data is generally rare and can be used to a variety of longitudinal analyses thus making it a great opportunity for researchers.
The survey fits well to the goals of funding agencies
Funding for running the survey is usually easy to obtain as software industry is a focus area for many national funding agencies. For example, in the Finnish Software Industry Survey – which is the original form of this survey and has been run in Finland since 1998 – the main financiers have for the recent years been the the Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation and the Federation of Finnish Technology Industries.
The survey provides a high-quality and cost-efficient way of generating assessments of the current situation and future prospects of the software industry by utilizing state-of-the-art statistical techniques and firm-level survey data, which in turn differentiates the survey from regular barometer type surveys. Furthermore, true international research cooperation is generally highly valued among national funding agencies and other potential financiers.
Provides recognition in the software industry
One advantage of the survey is to create a position in which firms get value to themselves by responding. Providing company reports for each respondent is a highly valued feature and creates goodwill among software firms. With the company-specific report, a firm can benchmark its performance against other firms in the industry by comparing their own responses to industry averages with simple and intuitive graphs and tables. The company reports are part of the reason why the survey has obtained such good response rates during the recent years.
Aalto University provides tried and tested survey tools
Running the survey in your country is easy as Aalto University provides you with tested and validated survey tools and procedures. This includes templates (survey forms, letter and email templates, templates for analysis and reporting data), third-party data (comprehensive European-wide address database), tools (online survey system, hosting of website and online file storage), and cooperation and guidance.
The survey is coordinated by researchers of Aalto University with many years of experience on survey development and implementation added with expertise on statistical and data analysis as well as extensive experience on the software industry. During the last years, the main report of the survey has become the most cited Finnish software industry report and considered the highest quality and most significant study of the industry.
From financiers point of view, the survey provides several benefits in forms of benchmarking the domestic software industry against other European countries, following the trends of the industry annually, promoting high-quality international research.
Follow the situation and trends of the software industry
The survey provides the tools to view the field from the perspective of the software firms, and offers extensive information on the current size, growth, and internationalization of the industry. It also provides tools for policy-makers to identify the barriers of growth and success and help to develop the competitiveness and performance of the software industry.
Furthermore, the survey generates annual data to follow the development of the industry on yearly basis. This enables observing and following the trends of the industry as well as identifying future expectations. Combined with the wide range of produced data on entrepreneurship, product development, and innovation, the survey comprises a valuable tool for observing and charting the situation and expectations of the software industry from numerous perspectives.
Benchmarking of domestic software industry
The survey generates data over a variety of European countries which provides an opportunity to benchmark the national software industries against the other European countries. There are currently few survey studies that provide data that can be used for between-country analyses on, for example, innovations. These can in turn provide valuable information for policy guidance by identifying strengths and weaknesses of domestic industries compared to other countries.
The main report of the survey includes some basic between-country comparisons, but the data can be used to developed more advanced and complex analyses on differences between countries in several dimensions. The analyses can be further advanced by collecting longitudinal data and observing how attributes of individual countries and firms within them develop over time.
Promotes international high-quality research
The Software Industry Survey is a joint effort of research institutes of several countries. True international collaboration is valuable in producing more advanced and high-quality research, thus improving our understanding on the software industry in a long term.