GII Engagement Call
As part of the Belfast Region City Deal (BRCD), the £55M Global Innovation Institute (GII) programme at Queen’s University Belfast (QUB) aims to transform NI’s digital economy by substantially increasing both the volume and range of digital innovation taking place within the region.Submit an Expression of Interest
GII will build on QUB’s Institute of Electronics, Communications and Information Technology (ECIT) core discipline expertise across cyber security, advanced wireless technologies, data science/analytics and scalable computing (secure – connected – intelligence) and will provide a novel multi-disciplinary environment, by combining these areas of strength with internationally-recognised excellence in food security/sustainability and health and life sciences (Digital Health/One Health). These unique combinations of skills, combined with a ground-breaking partnership approach to delivering scalable computing solutions, in an exciting new physical co-creation environment, will make GII a game changer for the region.
In partnership with industry, academia and government, GII will deliver a distinctive programme of research and innovation, harnessing common technical foundations for economic and societal impact.
One of the areas in which GII will play a major role is in the area of preserving and enhancing our digital health – driving a holistic and data-centric approach to 'One Health', encompassing, for example, the health of soil and environment, of animals and livestock, and of individual humans and populations. While Digital Health/One Health will be an important initial focus area of GII, other sectors will also be considered e.g. advanced manufacturing and financial services, ensuring we are meeting the needs of the wider economy.
The opportunity provided by GII will offer a significant boost to ensure true cross-faculty, cross-university multi-disciplinary research.
In doing this, we will be bringing together for the first time, world-class researchers in multi-disciplinary domains on a scale and critical mass that is internationally standard-setting. GII is also central to exciting plans for Innovation City Belfast, which include creation of an Innovation District within the Belfast Harbour site with the aim of delivering a thriving ecosystem of 20,000 jobs, and 500 companies by 2035, in the focus areas of Health/Life Sciences and Fintech. As ECIT enters this new phase in its development, we wish to further our engagement with the Queen’s academic community to help us grow both our core and multi-disciplinary research areas, which will underpin GII plans and ambition going forward.
We are actively seeking ambitious and driven researchers from across the University who wish to collaborate with us to augment our core research areas as well as our multidisciplinary research.
We are interested in hearing from anyone who can contribute directly to our centres, and we are also keen to attract experts who develop or use digital technologies to achieve breakthroughs in engineering, the health and life sciences or the social sciences. We have a growing portfolio of multidisciplinary projects and as part of our ECIT Interdisciplinary Research Strategy we developed the following multidisciplinary research themes: Health Analytics and Protection of Public Health Data, Smart Cities and Secure Connected Intelligent IoT, AI-Security for Finance & Insurance, Agri-Tech and Environmental Sustainability.
BECOMING A GII MEMBER
The institute is made up of three research centres namely:
- The Centre for Data Science and Scalable Computing (DSSC), which is known for research excellence in cognitive signal processing, high-performance and scalable computing, and applied machine learning.
- The Centre for Secure Information Technologies (CSIT), where we conduct leading research in security and privacy, hardware and embedded systems security, applied cryptography, cloud and IoT security, network security, malware, industrial control systems security and AI-enabled security.
- The Centre for Wireless Innovation (CWI) which has world leading capability in millimetre-wave and multiple antenna systems and their use in future technologies and applications such as 5G, 6G and IoT.
We are partnering with our colleagues in the Faculty of Medicine, Health and Life Sciences (FMHLS) who have embedded BRCD (including GII) within their Faculty Strategy to 2030. Our engagement spans the 4 Schools of FMHLS and their research centres/institutes:
- School of Medicine Dentistry and Biomedical Sciences (SMDBS) and its three research centres
- Patrick G Johnston Centre for Cancer Research
- Welcome Wolfson Institute for Experimental Medicine (WWIEM)
- Centre for Public Health (CPH)
- School of Biological Sciences (SBS) and The Institute for Global Food Security (IGFS)
- School of Pharmacy (SP)
- School of Nursing and Midwifery (SNaM)
Some of the benefits that you can expect from engaging with the GII include:
- Involvement in multi-disciplinary project proposals – participate in consortia made up of academic and industry partners.
- Access to a team of industry experienced engineers – who develop professional hardware and software demonstrators, support knowledge transfer activities and accelerate the impact of your research.
- Dedicated business development and industry support – to facilitate industry engagement and commercialisation.
- A collegial environment - that fosters collaboration and cross-pollination of ideas without barriers.
- Dedicated or hot-desking space and access to facilities with state of the art testbeds – for you and your research team
- Flexible membership – designation as a GII Associate Fellow or Fellow.
All GII Fellows are expected to undertake and contribute to broad research initiatives within the Institute, regardless of career stage. GII Fellows should be role models who in addition to research leadership are contributing appropriately to the education, impact and outreach missions of their home Schools, Faculties, and Queen’s University.
GII Associate Fellowships
We welcome Associate Fellowship applications from experts who are interested in multidisciplinary research activity. This could include the co-supervision of PhD students, collaborative research and innovation proposals and/or being part of our multidisciplinary co-ordination teams in 1) Health Analytics and Protection of Public Health Data; 2) Smart Cities and Secure Connected Intelligent IoT; 3) AI-Security for Finance & Insurance; and 4) Agri-Tech and Environmental Sustainability. Some examples emerging from recent multi-disciplinary research activity across GII and other domains in the University include research on the computational challenges of genomics, the influence of social networks in public health, the legal, political and ethical implications of Artificial Intelligence and Cybersecurity and the use of video analytics in agri-food. We also welcome applications from researchers who wish to pursue the use of new and emerging technologies explored in GII’s three research centers, CWI, CSIT and DSSC (in Cybersecurity, HPC & Cloud Computing, Data Sciences, Artificial Intelligence, or Wireless Communications) to achieve breakthroughs in their respective fields. Candidates for Associate Fellowship should demonstrate a track record in the use of new digital and data-driven technologies in their research, or a potential for such technologies to enable breakthroughs in their research in the near future. A desirable but not essential criterion for Associate Fellowship candidates is demonstrable links (or clear ability to build links) with industry, public sector, or other external stakeholders. Previous experience in multidisciplinary research is also desirable.
GII Fellows should demonstrate expertise which is aligned with one or more of the priority research themes of the three GII Centres (CSIT, CWI or DSSC) or relevant to our aspirations in life/health sciences and agri-food, with a particular focus on Digital Health/One Health. These domains may range from established to emerging activities and are continuously reviewed by the GII Leadership Team to maintain alignment with national and international research priorities. Applicants are encouraged to consult with Centre Directors or the MHLS and IGFS GII Leads before applying, to understand in more depth the priority areas for GII. Applicants for Fellowship should demonstrate a track record of research outputs, ability to secure research income, and examples of research impact activity (commensurate with career stage) in line with GII’s mission and priorities. GII welcomes submissions from early-career researchers and will consider them in accordance with their career stage. Staff potential to undertake multidisciplinary research is a desirable criterion, although not a requirement for consideration as a Fellow.
If you wish to engage with GII and are interested in contributing to our core research areas and/or undertaking collaborative research, please submit an expression of interest, to include the following information, by email to firstname.lastname@example.org:
- Area in which you wish to engage: CWI, DSSC, CSIT, Digital Health/One Health and/or multidisciplinary research theme (from list above)
- A link to your Pure profile or a CV/biography (2-page maximum)
Further information can be found at: https://www.qub.ac.uk/ecit/Aboutus/GIIEngagementCall/.
Please note that you need to inform your Head of School or Department of your submission.
If you are interested in learning more about GII and our ambitious plans, please feel free to contact any of the following GII team leads, depending on your area of interest:
Expressions of Interest are welcomed on a rolling basis and will be processed quarterly (31 Jan/30 April/31 Jul/31 Oct) by GII’s senior management team. Membership will be considered by a panel of experts drawn from ECIT and across the University, as necessary. We welcome submissions from early-career academic staff on probation and will consider these in accordance with career stage.
On behalf of GII, we look forward to working with you in the future!