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  • School of CS newsletter

    Published: Friday, 04 May 2018

    Weekly newsletter for the School of CS

    [ top ]News from Head of School

    Research Symposium 2018

    Research Symposium 2018

    We have managed to reach May without reporting on the success of the Research Symposium held at the beginning of April.

    The Symposium gives the School's PGR students an opportunity to present their work to the School.

    Professor Simon Thompson from the University of Kent gave this year's keynote presentation where he gave a talk titled "On the journey to independence: from first idea to first grant” which was well received. The symposium included 38 poster presentations and 29 research talks, all of which were well attended. Steve Legg representing IBM commented again that he was impressed by the continued high quality and diversity of the research carried out by our students.

    Thank you to those who came and supported the students, I’m sure you will agree that it was a great experience.

    At the symposium we also hand out various prizes sponsored by IBM.

    Congratulations again to the prize winners, who were:

    Outstanding Thesis Award Sarah Nogueira Thesis title: "Quantifying the Stability of Feature Selection"

    Outstanding Paper Award Winner: Mantas Mikaitis Paper: “Neuromodulated Synaptic Plasticity on the SpiNNaker Neuromorphic System", Mikaitis, Mantas et al. Frontiers in Neuroscience 12 (2018): 105. PMC. Web. 1 May 2018.

    Runner-up: Julio Vega Paper: “Back to Analogue: Self-Reporting for Parkinson’s Disease”, Julio Vega et al. CHI '18 Proceedings of the 2018 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, Paper No. 74.

    Runner-up: Gabriel A. Fonseca Guerra Paper: “Using Stochastic Spiking Neural Networks on SpiNNaker to Solve Constraint Satisfaction Problems”, Fonseca Guerra, Gabriel A., and Steve B. Furber. Frontiers in Neuroscience 11 (2017): 714. PMC. Web. 1 May 2018.

    Outstanding Poster Award (Awarded by a panel of academics and IBM representatives) Gavin Abercrombie Poster title: "The 'ayes' have it? Towards topic-centric sentiment analysis of parliamentary debates"

    Outstanding Presentation Award (A new award voted for by attendees) Ainur Begalinova

    gravatar Karon Mee

    GDPR roadshows

    GDPR roadshows

    The Information Governance Team are holding a series of Roadshows where questions can be asked about GDPR. There's no need to book, just turn up.

    The South Campus dates and locations are: South Campus - Simon Building - Wednesday, 9 May, 14:00 - 15:00, Simon Building, Lecture Theatre D - Friday, 18 May 2018, 11:00 - 12:00, Simon Building, 4.38

    The article, along with North Campus dates, is at

    gravatar Karon Mee



    The Peer Support celebration evening was held on May 2nd at the Ramada Renaissance Hotel and attended by over 100 students and staff from across the University. The awards were presented by the University’s Chancellor, Lemn Sissay.

    Congratulations to Pierre Barnaud (Y3, SE) and Mike Cruchten (Y3, CM) who won Outstanding Contribution to Peer Support’ awards for their contribution to the School’s 1st Year PASS Scheme. Congratulations also go to Josh Langley (Y4, CSwIE) and Sami Alabed (Y4, CSwIE) who won ‘Outstanding Contribution to Peer Support’ awards for running the 2nd Year PASS Scheme. They were ably supported this term by the superb team of Oreste Wolcsics (Y3, CSwIE), Ben Possible (Y3, CSwIE), Mihai Bujanca (Y3, CSwIE) and Sebastian Mararu (Y3, CS). This is the 6th year in a row that the School has had at least one recipient of one of these prestigious awards and the first time that the School has won awards for both schemes. Thank you to everyone in the School who has helped to make PASS in Computer Science a huge success again this year!

    gravatar Karon Mee

    [ top ]Research Funding Opportunities

    MRC Proximity to Discovery: Industry Engagement Fund (Phase 4) - deadline 30 June 2018

    The Business Engagement Team is pleased to announce that the University has been awarded £237,000 from MRC to deliver Phase 4 of the MRC Proximity to Discovery (P2D) Industry Engagement Fund, running from 1st May 2018 to 31st August 2019.

    Call for proposals: Opens 1st May 2018, deadline of 30th June 2018

    As in previous rounds, the fund aims to overcome the bottleneck to the establishment of new collaborations by supporting early interactions and knowledge exchange between industry and academic researchers. Successful proposals will:

    • Enhance academic understanding of industry or vice versa in order to foster biomedical research collaborations
    • Showcase biomedical research to highlight the opportunities they provide for potential industry partners
    • Allow an exchange of skills or knowledge which will enable new collaborative projects to develop

    The competition is structured around two schemes, Relationship Incubator and Industry Secondment, and will invite application from across the biomedical space, including but not exclusive to

    • Therapeutics
    • Medical Devices
    • Diagnostics
    • Digital Health

    Click here for further details on the MRC P2D Fund

    Those interested to apply are encouraged to attend the information event taking place on Wednesday 2 May. Click here for the agenda and to register.

    Please contact Su Smith, in the first instance, or contact Naomi Chandler, Business Engagement Officer (0161 306 0554) for more information.

    gravatar Su Smith

    Royal Society Short Industry Fellowship - deadline 24 May 2018

    The Short Industry Fellowship scheme enables scientists employed in industry or academia to have shorter more dynamic engagements between academia and industry, working on a mutually beneficial and collaborative project. Secondments can be held for a period of between three and six months full time, or up to 12 months part time. For longer term collaborative projects between industry and academia, see the Industry Fellowship which opens again in August.

    It is anticipated that the personal and corporate links established by the researcher between the two sectors in the UK will seed longer-term collaborations and contribute to their long-term future development. These appointments are funded by the Royal Society.

    Please visit the call web page for further information.

    gravatar Su Smith

    [ top ]Research News

    Research Lifecycle Programme ‘open house’ event - Thursday 3 May

    The Research Lifecycle is a five-year programme of investments to support The University of Manchester in meeting its goal of being one of the top 25 research universities in the world.

    Spaces are still available on the third of the programme’s ‘open house’ events taking place at 12:30pm on Thursday 3 May in the Alan Turing Building, and is open to anyone at the University with an interest in research - research staff, academics, support staff, postgraduate research students and anyone else whose day-to-day life at the University touches on research in any way.

    If you’re not aware of the programme’s work so far, you can familiarise yourself by watching the Research Lifecycle Programme introduction presentation from the first open house event on 28 February, or browse the RLP website.

    gravatar Su Smith

    [ top ]Tech Support News

    Dropbox Business and Smart Sync – update for macOS users

    This update on the new Smart Sync feature for Dropbox Business is for macOS users that also backup/restore with Apple's Time Machine (TM).

    Dropbox acknowledge that, currently, trying to restore a TM backup that includes the Dropbox folder where Smart Sync has been used to save space can fail.

    I've stopped my experiments with it now and switched all folders back to Local. My recommendation is only to use if one of your machines is very low on space and you don't rely on Time Machine.

    gravatar Ian Cottam

    GDPR – new data protection legislation

    The Information Governance Office (IGO) of UoM now have the start of a useful FAQ on GDPR (which comes into law 25 May 2018).

    For example, it now includes UoM's Dropbox Business account as an example of a suitable place for storing files you need to keep. If you want to send me any further questions, I can collate them and if they become 'frequent' pass them on to the IGO for inclusion.

    There is also a roadshow on GDPR that staff can attend (dates below):

    South Campus - Simon Building
    Wednesday, 9 May, 14:00 - 15:00, Simon Building, Lecture Theatre D
    Friday, 18 May 2018, 11:00 - 12:00, Simon Building, 4.38


    Alex Daybank will be leading these sessions with support from other members of the IGO. There will also be printed copies of the GDPR 5 minute guides available to pick up.

    gravatar Ian Cottam

    [ top ]Social Responsibility

    Social Responsibility Team funding competition

    The Social Responsibility Team in the Faculty of Science and Engineering (FSE) is re-launching a funding competition to encourage all staff and students to engage with the University’s Social Responsibility agenda. We invite applications for funding of up to £3,000 to support Social Responsibility initiatives which can ‘make a difference’ within the University, in the local community and internationally.

    This is an open call for submissions from all academic and PSS staff as well as undergraduate and postgraduate students in FSE. Applications on any area of Social Responsibility will be considered but we particularly encourage applications relating to: • Widening Participation • Research with Societal or Environmental Impact • Social Responsibility in the Curriculum Please see the attached document for more information about the funding competition and for the application form.

    To apply, please complete the application form and send it via email to Fran Guratsky, the Social Responsibility Project Manager for FSE. This information and form are available on StaffNet. The deadline to apply for this funding is Monday, 28th May 2018.

    The funding will be available to successful applicants between 1st August 2018-26th July 2019 and initiatives must be delivered during this time. Please share this call with colleagues and students in your area. If you would like to discuss any ideas or have any queries please contact Fran Guratsky (0161 306 5905). Your School's Director of Social Responsibility may also be able to provide help and advice.

    gravatar Karon Mee

    gravatar Karon Mee
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Last change: Friday, 04 May 2018 16:31:39