Characteristics and Challenges of Agile Software Development Adoption in Brazilian Government


  • Rafaela Mantovani Fontana Federal University of Parana
  • Sabrina Marczak Pontifical Catholic University of Rio Grande do Sul



agile software development, government, public sector, Brazil, survey


Governments worldwide have been working to provide better digital services to citizens. In Brazil, this initiative is ongoing since the 2000’s with the aim create better digital solutions that provide access to government information, improvements in public services, and increase social participation. One of the strategies for developing digital solutions – i.e. software solutions – is the adoption of agile software development (ASD) methods, which are forms of software processes that enable delivering working software in a timely manner to respond to customer needs. While industry surveys are performed annually to understand ASD adoption in companies, little is known about the adoption of ASD in Brazilian government organizations and which are the challenges faced by these organizations. The goal of this study is thus to describe agile software development adoption in the Brazilian public sector, by showing the characteristics for adoption and challenges. We conducted a survey with practitioners of government-based organizations in Brazil and statistically analyzed data. Out of the 167 responses, we learned that ASD projects are mostly successful and, on their majority, they are conducted combined with other software development approaches. Also, accelerating product delivery and increasing productivity are ranked as the main reasons for agile adoption, followed by cultural change and resistance to change as the main challenges still faced by Brazilian government IT organizations in the use of ASD.


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Author Biographies

Rafaela Mantovani Fontana, Federal University of Parana

Rafaela Mantovani Fontana is an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Professional and Technological Education at Federal University of Paraná, Curitiba, Brazil. She co-leads the SOLID Research Group, which focuses on software engineering and education-applied data analysis. Her research interests are on agile software development, software project management, software quality, software process management, and mining software repositories. Contact her at [email protected]

Sabrina Marczak, Pontifical Catholic University of Rio Grande do Sul

Sabrina Marczak is an Adjunct Professor in the School of Technology at PUCRS University, Porto Alegre, Brazil. She co-leads the MunDDoS Research Group, which mostly conducts industry-based research in Software Engineering. Her research interests are on collaborative, social and human aspects of software development, on software process improvement including agile methods, and on requirements engineering. Contact her at [email protected]




How to Cite

Mantovani Fontana, R., & Marczak, S. (2020). Characteristics and Challenges of Agile Software Development Adoption in Brazilian Government. Journal of Technology Management & Innovation, 15(2), 3–10.



Research Articles