School of Computer Science

Weekly Newsletter

22 Nov 2010


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News from Head of School

Centre for Doctoral Training in Computer Science – We Won!

The good news is that the school has been successful in its bid to host the new EPSRC funded Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) in Computer Science; although we have yet to receive the formal notification, the award from the EPSRC is expected to be around £2.2 million. This centre, which will include support from the CDT Grant, the EPSRC Doctoral Training Account and the school, will admit at least 75 doctoral students over the next 5 years and is the only such centre in the UK. This funding has the beneficial effect of providing a commitment to significant expenditure on studentships over a period when we know that money will be tight.


The strapline in the proposal is that we will train the complete researcher, and the resulting 4 year PhD model includes technical units from our masters programmes and a collection of training and collaboration activities, for example to provide understanding of experimental evaluation and research impact. The details can be found in the Case for Support.  We will also seek to introduce an MRes programme so that students can obtain similar opportunities in 4 year and (1 + 3) Year configurations. In communicating the outcome to us we were told that the competition was extremely tight (in essence we were up against all the top Computer Science departments in the country), but the panel felt strongly that our proposal represented an excellent opportunity to make a real impact to doctoral training in CS in the UK.


The Centre Director will be Steve Furber and the Centre Manager will be Jon Shapiro; Jon led the development of the bid, and is particularly to be congratulated on its success.  However, this was a good team effort, with the bid team including Howard, Jim, Uli and Allan.  Many others contributed, however, for example in obtaining letters of support.

School Health and Safety Policy

The school's Health and Safety Policy document has recently been revised, and contains a range of different items of information that people in the school should know or may need to look up.  It is available from:[n1] 



School Seminar                                                                                             24 Nov 10

Prof Jong Park, Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology
Quality of Life Technology for the Aurally Challenged and for the Elderly
14:15, Lecture Theatre 1.4, Kilburn Building

Seminar homepage

EPSRC Grantsmanship Study Day                                                          25 Nov 10

A Grantsmanship study day has been organised to give university researchers who are thinking of applying to the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council an overview of how the organisation works and an insight into the peer review process.


The session will run from 9am – 4pm and will typically involve:

·        Presentations – introduction to EPSRC, the peer review process and funding opportunities

·        Tips on proposal writing – first steps in Grantsmanship from Professor Hugh McCann

·        Mock panels – attendees have the chance to practice a prioritisation panel meeting with real grant proposals

·        Plenty of Q&A time


If you would like to book onto this session please at your earliest convenience email Stephanie Ball as places are limited.


Please consider the following before booking a place:

·        If you are accepted on the course but can no longer attend the study day you should Stephanie Ball immediately so that your place can be offered to someone else.

·        Please be aware that in preparation of the mock panel you will be asked to complete some work and should put aside a few hours in advance of the study day for this.

This study day is intended for academics who will be applying to EPSRC in the future.


Research Awards

Application of semantic web technology for the automated integration of scientific data in the drug discovery process

Funding Body: EPSRC CASE
PI: Carole Goble
Award Amount: £26,500


Funding Opportunities

Reminder: Royal Society International Joint Projects                        25 Nov 10

The Royal Society Joint Project programme is designed to enable international collaboration by providing a mobility grant for researchers and members of their research teams to cover travel, subsistence and research expenses. It also aims to provide seed money for research that will lead to further collaboration and greater funding in the future from larger funding bodies.

Subjects Covered:  All areas of the life and physical sciences, including engineering, but excluding clinical medicine.

Eligibility:  The Project Leaders must be from academia, of at least postdoctoral status or equivalent and hold a permanent or fixed-term contract in an eligible organisation which, if it is the latter, continues at least for the duration of the project. Collaborations should be based on a single project involving two teams lead by project leaders, or individuals:  one based in the UK and the other based overseas.  A relationship between the two team leaders should already be established prior to making an application and the collaboration should involve bilateral visits between the UK and the country where the overseas team leader is based.

Length of Tenure:  2 years

Value of Grant:  Up to £6000 a year for 2 years for travel and subsistence. Within the £6000 available each year, up to £1000 can be used for research expenses (excluding computer hardware).

Countries covered:  Currently Joint Projects are available to those in European and Former Soviet Union countries, China, Korea, Japan, Hong Kong, Taiwan, IndiaGhana, Tanzania, South Africa and certain countries in Latin America. Please check appendix 1 of the scheme notes for eligible countries.

Cost-share arrangements:  Depending on which country your collaboration is with proposals can be submitted either as a ‘direct’ application (to the Royal Society only) or as a ‘parallel cost share’ application. The latter entails the UK team leader submitting a proposal to the Royal Society AND the Overseas team leader simultaneously submitting a proposal to a partner organisation (usually an Academies of Science abroad) with whom the Royal Society has cost share agreement, in which case the travel and subsistence costs are shared between the Royal Society and the overseas Partner. Please note that ‘direct’ applications are still accepted even if a cost share partner is available.  Please check appendix 1 of the scheme notes for cost share countries/partners.


Opening and Closing dates:  The 2010 round for Russia cost-share applications in conjunction with RFBR is currently open and closes on 22 November 2010.  The round for direct (Royal Society only) applications with Russia and all other countries eligible under the Joint Project scheme is also open and closes on 25 November 2010.





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