The Third International Conference on Product Focused Software Process Improvement (PROFES 2001) continued the success of the PROFES’99 and PROFES 2000 conferences. PROFES 2001 was organized in Kaiserslautern, Germany, September 10 13, 2001. The PROFES conference has its roots in the PROFES Esprit project (http: //www.ele.vtt.fi/profes/), but it quickly evolved into a full fledged general purpose conference in 1999 and since then it has gained wide spread international popularity. As in previous years, the main theme of PROFES 2001 was professional software process improvement (SPI) motivated by product and service quality needs. SPI is facilitated by software process assessment, software measurement, process modeling, and technology transfer and has become a practical tool for quality software engineering and management. The conference addresses both the solutions found in practice as well as relevant research results from academia. The purpose of the conference is to bring to light the most recent findings and results in the area and to stimulate discussion between the researchers, experienced professionals, and technology providers for SPI.