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Dr. Ilinca Ciupa

Mailing address
Ilinca Ciupa
Software Engineering, Meyer
ETH Zentrum, RZ J8
8092 Zurich
Physical address
Ilinca Ciupa
Department of Computer Science
RZ Building, RZ J8
Clausiusstrasse 59
8092 Zurich
Ilinca Ciupa
Phone: +41 44 632 44 49
Fax: +41 44 632 14 35
E-mail: Ilinca[dot]Ciupa[at]inf[dot]ethz[dot]ch
This page:


I was a postdoc in the Chair of Software Engineering between January 1st and June 30th 2009. I did my PhD (dissertation title: "Strategies for random contract-based testing", defended in December 2008) under the supervision of Prof. Dr. Bertrand Meyer. I also did my diploma thesis at the Chair of Software Engineering (March 1 - July 31, 2004), and was an academic guest here between October 2004 and July 2005.

Areas of research

My research area is automatic software testing. The topic that I focus on is contract-based testing. Contracts describe the intended semantics of the software. As such, they can be used in determining if a component fulfills its specification and, furthermore, this verification can be performed automatically. Together with Andreas Leitner, I am working on developing a tool called AutoTest for the automatic generation of tests for contract-equipped Eiffel code. This tool is available freely. Its main functionality includes fully automatic generation and running of tests and evaluation of results.

Another part of my work focuses on empirical large-scale evaluations of testing strategies.

More on our research on testing...



  • Polikarpova, N., Ciupa, I., Meyer, B., "A comparative study of programmer-written and automatically inferred contracts", to appear in Proceedings of ISSTA 2009: International Symposium on Software Testing and Analysis 2009, (Chicago, IL, USA), July 2009
  • Ciupa, I., Pretschner, A., Oriol, M., Leitner, A., Meyer, B., "On the number and nature of faults found by random testing", to appear in the Journal on Software Testing, Verification and Reliability (STVR), Wiley Interscience


  • Ciupa, I., "Strategies for random-contract based testing", PhD thesis, Diss. ETH No. 18143, December 2008 pdf
  • Ciupa, I., Meyer, B., Oriol, M., Pretschner, A., "Finding Faults: Manual Testing vs. Random+ Testing vs. User Reports", to appear in Proceedings of ISSRE'08: The 19th IEEE International Symposium on Software Reliability Engineering, (Redmond, Seattle, USA), November 2008
  • Ciupa, I., Leitner, A., Oriol, M., Meyer, B., "ARTOO: Adaptive Random Testing for Object-Oriented Software", Proceedings of ICSE'08: International Conference on Software Engineering 2008, (Leipzig, Germany), May 2008 (15%) pdf bibtex
  • © ACM, 2008. This is the author's version of the work. It is posted here by permission of ACM for your personal use. Not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in the Proceedings of the 30th international conference on Software engineering, 2008
  • Ciupa, I., Pretschner, A., Leitner, A., Oriol, M., Meyer, B., "On the Predictability of Random Tests for Object-Oriented Software", Proceedings of ICST'08: IEEE International Conference on Software Testing, Verification and Validation 2008, (Lillehammer, Norway), April 2008 (23%) pdf bibtex Best paper award


  • Leitner, A., Ciupa, I., Oriol, M., Meyer, B., Fiva, A., "Contract Driven Development = Test Driven Development - Writing Test Cases", Proceedings of ESEC/FSE 2007: European Software Engineering Conference and the ACM SIGSOFT Symposium on the Foundations of Software Engineering, (Dubrovnik, Croatia), September 2007 (17%) pdf bibtex
  • Leitner, A., Oriol, M., Ciupa, I., Zeller, A., Meyer, B., "Efficient Unit Test Case Minimization", Proceedings of ASE'07: 22nd IEEE/ACM International Conference on Automated Software Engineering, (Atlanta, Georgia), November 2007, pp. 417-420 pdf bibtex
  • Ciupa, I., Leitner, A., Oriol, M., Meyer, B., "Experimental Assessment of Random Testing for Object-Oriented Software", Proceedings of ISSTA'07: International Symposium on Software Testing and Analysis 2007, (London, UK), July 2007 (22%) pdf bibtex
  • Leitner, A., Eugster, P., Oriol, M., Ciupa, I., "Reflecting on an Existing Programming Language", Proceedings of TOOLS Europe 2007 - Objects, Models, Components, Patterns, (Zurich, Switzerland), June 2007 bibtex
  • Meyer, B., Ciupa, I., Leitner, A., Liu, L., "Automatic Testing of Object-Oriented Software", in Proceedings of SOFSEM 2007, Current Trends in Theory and Practice of Computer Science, (Harrachov, Czech Republic), January, 2007 pdf bibtex (also published as ETH Technical Report 538 11/2006)
  • Leitner, A., Ciupa, I., Meyer, B., Howard, M., "Reconciling Manual and Automated Testing: the AutoTest Experience", in Proceedings of the 40th Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences (Waikoloa, Big Island, Hawaii), January, 2007 pdf bibtex


  • Ciupa, I., Leitner, A., Oriol, M., Meyer, B., "Object Distance and Its Application to Adaptive Random Testing of Object-Oriented Programs", in RT'06: Proceedings of the 1st International Workshop on Random Testing (Portland, Maine, USA), July, 2006 pdf bibtex


  • Ciupa, I., Leitner, A., "Automatic Testing Based on Design by Contract", in Proceedings of Net.ObjectDays 2005: 6th Annual International Conference on Object-Oriented and Internet-based Technologies, Concepts, and Applications for a Networked World (Erfurt, Germany) , September, 2005.
  • Paper presented in the Developer Session of the International Workshop on Software Quality (SOQUA 2005) pdf bibtex

Invited talks



Student projects

  • Vlad Gorgan: Automatic Random Input Construction for Testing Object-Oriented Systems (diploma project, February - June 2008)
  • Nadia Polikarpova: Dynamic assertion inference in a programming language with Design by Contract support (Eiffel case study) (master project, May 2007 - June 2008)
  • Cosmin Mitran: Guided Random-Based Testing Strategies (diploma project, February - June 2007)
  • Raluca Borca-Muresan: Field Study and Clasiffication of Faults in Eiffel (diploma project, February - June 2006)
  • Reto Ghioldi: Detecting errors in external (C) code (master project, September 2005 - March 2006)
  • Enrico Albonico: Portable Vision2 Widget for Rendering HTML (semester project, July - November 2005)
  • Christian Rijke: Code Coverage for the TestStudio Tool (semester project, winter semester 2004-2005)


  • I attended the TAROT summer school on software and telecommunications testing, Paris, June 27 - July 1, 2005 (report available only to members of the Chair of Software Engineering)

Events organized