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What is Traceability?

Traceability has been defined by Gotel et al, as "the ability to follow the life of a requirement in both a forward and backward direction"[1].

Jarke et al identified four types of traceability that they referred to as (i) backwards from requirements, (ii) forwards to requirements, (iii) backwards to requirements, and (iv) forward from requirements [2].


1. Orlena Gotel, Anthony Finkelstein: Contribution structures (Requirements artifacts). RE 1995: 100-107.

2. Matthias Jarke: Requirements Tracing - Introduction. Commun. ACM 41(12): 32-36 (1998)

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