Software and Systems Engineering

Software Engineering

Evidence-Based Software Engineering

Our Evidence-Based Software Engineering (EBSE) research has built on the foundational paper presented by Professor Barbara Kitchenham in 2004 at the 26th International Conference on Software Engineering. Our research has focused on transferring evidence-based practices to software engineering and in particular we are addressing methodological aspects of the systematic (literature) review process.

We have undertaken systematic reviews across a range of topics including software metrics research, global software development, the UML and methodological aspects of the systematic review process. Methodological studies have addressed such topics as search strategies, completeness, reliability and repeatability of systematic reviews.

A major outcome of our research is a set of recommendations for updating guidelines for systematic reviews. The updated guidelines form part of a book on EBSE: Kitchenham, B.A., Budgen, D. and Brereton, P., 2015. Evidence-Based Software engineering and systematic reviews (Vol. 4). CRC Press.

"Big Data" Analytics

tweets per day UK We specialise in the integration of large and heterogeneous datasets. Often data are spread in many different databases and available in different formats and semantics. Unifying the meaning of data and providing a single access point can be extremely important to increase data quality and to infer information that is not possible to retrieve otherwise. We apply this approach to create integrated datasets that can then be used to inform the computational design of biological systems. Moreover, we use existing information from a well-studied bacterial organism to predict genome-scale regulatory networks in closely related but not well-known organisms.

Cultural Informatics

Virtual Cuneiform Tablet Reconstruction Sandra Woolley is a founding members of the Virtual Cuneiform Tablet Reconstruction (VCTR) Project - an international collaboration inspired by the ambition to support virtual access to cuneiform artefacts and to reconstruct cuneiform tablets by joining virtual fragments together.

Cuneiform script is one of mankind’s earliest systems of writing. Formed by impressions on handheld clay “tablets”, it was the original portable information technology. Many thousands of fragmented cuneiform tablet have been unearthed in the last 200 years and are now distributed within and between museum collections worldwide. Their reconstruction poses a 3D “puzzle” of enormous complexity.

The VCTR Project contributes toward the solving of this puzzle in several ways: it is resourcing low-cost 3D acquisition systems, advancing automated virtual reconstruction algorithms, evolving a collaborative reconstruction environment and facilitating interactive on-line 3D archiving. Information about our system, our environment and our research results can be found at, together with a listing of our publications which include:

Voynich Manuscript

Voynich manuscript

One of our Senior Lecturers, Gordon Rugg, cracked the 400-year-old mystery of the Voynich manuscript (see here). He is now tackling everything from Alzheimer's to the origins of the universe. 

Athena Swan