School of Computer Science

Weekly Newsletter

29th May 2006


News from HoS

This Week

School Events

External Events

Funding Opps

Prize & Award Opps

Research Awards

Staff News




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School Seminars

ESNW Seminars

NaCTeM Seminars


News from Head of School

AUT Action

For those who were not able to make the meeting I called on Friday for academic staff, I should give a brief recap.  Having spent some time asking questions, looking at evidence and thinking, I have come to the conclusion that to honestly do the best for our students will mean making alternative arrangements to mark some work that would otherwise have been marked by AUT members.  John Latham confirmed, on behalf of the AUT members, that they would have no problem with this so long as no coercion was involved; he also emphasised their concern that this might impact on standards.  In summary the situation is as follows: for 1st Years, there should be enough information available to make reasonably reliable progression decisions (with resits where necessary); for 2nd Years, we will have enough information to make reliable progression decisions, and will wait until the action is over to mark any papers that will not be marked at present – leading to reliable marks to contribute to the final degree result; for Final  Years, 60% of exam scripts are likely to be marked ‘normally’, and it is probable that this could rise to 80% reliably marked with reallocation of marking for three papers; around 50 projects will have no mark unless they are reallocated.  I do not wish either to place AUT members in a position where they have effectively withdrawn their labour, or to increase the load significantly for other members of staff.  I thus propose that we reassign duties so that we get everything marked that we possibly can (at all reliably) for final year students, with compensating adjustment of overall load for the individuals affected.  There seemed to be a reasonable consensus amongst those present on Friday that, although this is not ideal, it is probably the best we can do in the circumstances.  I am spending the day today (Tuesday) discussing the details with individuals.

Feedback from Trip to India

Ning Zhang has recently returned from a promotional visit to India, during which she visited the offices of our overseas agents and met with both applicants and offer holders. Ning’s report provides plenty of food for thought. India is clearly a fiercely competitive market, and success there will be central to addressing our international student recruitment problems. A copy of the report can be downloaded from here.  This kind of intelligence is clearly important, so if any academic member of staff is planning overseas travel and would be willing to tie this in with promotional activities to raise the profile of the School, with agents and/or potential partner institutions, Bernard and the External Affairs Office would be very pleased to hear from you.

Teaching Fellow interviews New                                                                                   

This Tuesday and Wednesday we will be interviewing for two Teaching Fellow positions to support the changes we are making to the UG programme. As part of the selection process the candidates will be giving short talks on their ideas and experience of teaching innovation and the ways in which they could contribute to our efforts.  The talks will be in LT1.4 on Tue 30th and Wed 31st at 10:00, 10:45 and 11:30. All who are interested are welcome to attend.

Periodic Review

The Faculty's Periodic Review of all our UG and PGT programmes took place on Wednesday last week. The oral feedback received was very positive, commending the high reputation of the School, both with our students and externally, and our procedures for reviewing and updating our programmes. Our Industrial Advisory Board initiative was greatly welcomed and encouraged. There were few concerns and most were extremely minor (including asking us to post SSCC minutes on a notice board as well as the website!). We were pleased that the panel agreed to raise our concern about lack of appropriate space for small group working with the University Space Review group.  We will receive written feedback on the review in a few weeks' time.  Again, many congratulations to all staff involved in the preparation for this, especially Graham and Gill.


Events this Week                                                               top

Teaching Fellow Presentations                                                               30 & 31 May

This Tuesday and Wednesday we will be interviewing for two Teaching Fellow positions to support the changes we are making to the UG programme. As part of the selection process the candidates will be giving short talks on their ideas and experience of teaching  innovation and the ways in which they can contribute to our efforts.  The talks will be in LT1.4 on Tue 30th and Wed 31st at 10:00, 10:45 and 11:30. All who are interested are welcome to attend.

Regular Seminar Series

See links in contents bar for information on seminar series organised by the School of CS, E-Science North West and National Centre for Text Mining.


Future School Events                                                        top

Requirements and Technologies for Provenance                                  22 Jun 06

ENSW technical meeting.  Volunteers required to give 10-15 min presentations.

1400 – 1700, ESNW Access Grid room, adjacent to 1.17 Kilburn

Email Dean Kuo or visit wiki

Research Retreat                                                                                       29-30 Jun 06

Palace Hotel, Buxton

Programme under development, input welcomed (email Ursula)

School UG Graduation Party                                                                            5 Jul 06

We will (hopefully) be celebrating the graduation of our UG students

1430 – 1530, prize-giving 1445, graduation ceremony 1645.

School BBQ                                                                                                        14 Jul 06

Details to follow


Future External Events                                                      top

Helping Students Succeed                                                                             6 Jun 06

Steve Potter, Director of Counselling (and experienced psychotherapist)

An EPS-TSU sponsored event covering academic life skills for students and  recognising and responding to students with personal problems affecting their academic performance (guidance on assessing risk, giving appropriate non-judgemental help and referrals to specialist help).

B4 Council Chamber, Sackville Street (time not available at time of writing)

Email EPS-TSU to book two days in advance (for catering purposes)

Brouwer and the Development of his Foundational Views New         13 Jun 06 

Prof Dirk van Dalen (Utrecht)

A guided tour through the highlights of Brouwer's intuitionism(!)

1400, G17 Newman Building

EPSRC Regional Academic Seminars                                                       14 Jun 06

Presentation by Professor John O'Reilly, Chief Executive of EPSRC, Question and Answer session, session on Peer Review and the grant application process.  There will also be a session on opportunities for interaction between industry, academia and other organisations.

14 June 2006 Manchester: Manchester Conference Centre (register by 2nd June)

More Information

Microsoft Invites you on a Deep Dive!                                               27 – 29 Jun 06

The UK Academia Team is partnering with DevelopMentor, to host an intense, hands-on technical event for academics in June 2006.

More Information & Registration

CLASS (Clerical and Secretarial Support) Network: New                       30 Jul 06

One Day Conference

Following on from the success of a similar event two years ago, the CLASS network, in conjunction with the STDU, is delivering a conference which gives staff the opportunity to attend a range of personal and professional development sessions and the chance to network with colleagues from across the University.  The key-note speaker will be Albert McMenemy, University Registrar and Secretary and Head of Administration.

More details and Registration

Interdisciplinary Summer School on Complex Systems             20 – 29 Aug 06

From Individual to Collective Behaviour in Large-Scale Complex Systems

Organised by the Schools of Computer Science, Mathematics and Physics

Young researchers (PhD students and postdocs) in mathematics, physics, computer science, biology, and quantitative social sciences are invited to apply.

St. Martin's College, Ambleside.

More Information

Lunchtime Yoga Classes – Karon Mee                                                   Every Tues

1200 – 1300 Tuesdays, Staff House

UMSA members £1.50; non-UMSA £2.00 per class


Funding Opportunities                                                       top

RAEng Industrial Secondment Scheme New                                                    Open

An opportunity for university lecturers in engineering to gain state-of-the-art industrial experience.

More Information

BBSRC International Scientific Interchange Scheme (ISIS)                         Open

To help scientists make and establish new contacts with their international counterparts.

More Information

RAEng Global Research Awards                                                                        Open

Projects in centres of excellence overseas focussing on stimulating wealth creation and improvements in the quality of life.

More Information

Wellcome Trust Equipment Grants                                                          Apr/May 06

For multi-user items of equipment.

More Information

BBSRC Research Equipment Initiative (REI) 2006                               28 June 06

For the purchase of mid-range multi-user, multi-project equipment.

More Information

EPSRC Postdoctoral Fellowships                                                              26 Sep 06

For talented young researchers, shortly or immediately after completing a PhD.

More Information


Prize and Award Opportunities                                          top

We have acknowledged the need to raise the profile of the School both nationally and internationally.  Nominating individuals for awards, and working actively with others to ensure that deserving individuals are nominated is one way of doing that.

Microsoft European Science Award                                                          31 May 06

For a major contribution to the advancement of science through the use of computational methods.  More Information

The IEEE Richard W. Hamming Medal                                                           1 Jul 06

'For exceptional contributions to information sciences, systems and technology.'

More Information

The IEEE John von Neumann Medal                                                             1 Jul 06

'For outstanding achievements in computer-related science and technology.'

More Information


Research Awards                                                               top

Computational Exploration of Molecules in the context of Biological Pathways Network

Funding Body: National Science Foundation

PI: Robert Stevens

Award Amount: £13286


Staff News                                                                           top

Awards and Promotions

None this week

Academic Arrivals

None this week

Academic Departures

None this week

Research Arrivals

None this week

Research Departures

None this week

Administrative Arrivals

None this week

Administrative Departures

None this week

Sabbatical Leave

Andrei Voronkov: Microsoft Research, Redmond USA
Aug 05 – Aug 06.

Ian Horrocks: University of Bozen-Bolzano, Bell Labs, and Stanford University
Feb 06 – Sep 06.

Peter Aczel: Nijmegen University, and Maths Institute at the University of Munich
Jan 06 – Sep 06.

Alasdair Rawsthorne: 80% secondment to Transitive Technologies
Oct 05 – Sep 06.

Alvaro Fernandes: IBM Almaden Research Centre US
Jul – Dec 06.


Vacancies                                                                            top

Academic Staff


Research Staff

Research Associate in Automated Reasoning and Web Ontologies

More Information

Postdoctoral Research Associate/Fellow, ISBE

More Information

Academic-Related Staff

Manchester Centre for MesoScience and NanoTechnology:

Senior Experimental Officer and Technical Director

More Information

Administrative Staff