This report characterizes the software processes currently used by software managers and practitioners in the U.S. and Japan. The U.S. data for this comparative study of the state of software practice in the U.S. and Japan is drawn from extensive SEI assessments conducted from 1987 through 1989. The Japanese maturity data was gathered during a three-week trip to Japan by the authors. This includes data on 168 U.S. projects and 196 Japanese software projects. This data is not a statistically valid sample of the software capabilities of either the U.S. or Japanese software industries. However, the data does indicate that the Japanese software industry is, in some respects, both weaker and stronger than that in the U.S. There are also significant differences in the maturity findings between the U.S. and Japanese organizations and these have important implications for software organizations in both countries.
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