The CREST 2018 workshop is the third in a series of workshops addressing formal approaches to reasoning about causation in systems engineering. The topic of formally identifying the cause(s) of specific events - usually some form of failures -, and explaining why they occurred, are increasingly in the focus of several, disjoint communities. The main objective of CREST is to bring together researchers and practitioners from industry and academia in order to enable discussions how explicit and implicit reasoning about causation is performed. A further objective is to link to the foundations of causal reasoning in the philosophy of sciences and to causal reasoning performed in other areas of computer science, engineering, and beyond.
Today’s IT systems, and the interactions between them, become increasingly complex. Power grid blackouts, airplane crashes, failures of medical devices and malfunctioning automotive systems are just a few examples of incidents that affect system safety. They are often due to component failures and unexpected interactions of subsystems under conditions that have not been anticipated during system design and testing. The failure of one component may entail a cascade of failures in other components; several components may also fail independently. In the security domain, localizing instructions and tracking agents responsible for information leakage and other system attacks is a central problem. Determining the root cause(s) of a system-level failure and elucidating the exact scenario that led to the failure is today a complex and tedious task that requires significant expertise. Formal approaches for automated causality analysis, fault localization, explanation of events, accountability and blaming have been proposed independently by several communities – in particular, AI, concurrency, model-based diagnosis, software engineering, security engineering and formal methods. Work on these topics has significantly gained speed during the last years. The goals of this workshop are to bring together and foster exchange between researchers from the different communities, and to present and discuss recent advances and new ideas in the field. Topics of interest include, but are not limited to:
CREST 2018 will take place as part of the 28th European Joint Conferences on Theory and Practice of Software (ETAPS) in Thessaloniki, Greece. ETAPS is the primary European forum for academic and industrial researchers working on topics relating to Software Science.