Towards a governance framework for chains of Scrum teams

Jan Vlietland, Hans van Vliet

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Context: Large companies operating in the information intensive industries increasingly adopt Agile/Scrum to swiftly change IT functionality because of rapid changing business demands. IT functionality in large enterprises however is typically delivered by a portfolio of interdependent software applications involving a chain of Scrum teams. Usually, each application from the portfolio is allocated to a single Scrum team, which necessitates collaboration between the Scrum teams to jointly deliver functionality. Objective: Identify the collaboration related issues in chains of Scrum teams. Method: We used a qualitative approach with transcripted interviews from three case studies that were coded and analyzed to identify the issues. Results: We identified six issues in chains of codependent Scrum teams; coordination, prioritization, alignment, automation, predictability and visibility. The synthesis of these issues with existing theory resulted in nine propositions. These nine propositions have been combined into a conceptual model. Conclusion: We propose this conceptual model as a starting point for a governance framework to manage chains of Scrum teams that addresses the identified issues.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)52-65
Number of pages14
JournalInformation and Software Technology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • Agile
  • Alignment
  • Chain of Scrum teams
  • Coordination
  • Predictability
  • Priority


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