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Dr Greer’s research is largely about software evolution: how to predict how software will change, how to assess change, how to plan for change, how to manage it and even how to make changes in software for the better automatically. Much of the research can be applied to real problems and the research is often using an experimental approach.

Overall, the focus has been on advancing software adaptability in software process and the software product. One productive avenue has been Search Based Software Engineering (SBSE) which attempts to apply search heuristics to solve complex problems in software development. One application of this to the software process is in release planning.

Nowadays most software processes are iterative and evolutionary and deciding which requirements go in which incremental release is not always straightforward, due to often conflicting economic considerations, risks, technical constraints and user preferences. SBSE can also be applied to optimizing software code to improve the software product. This is the basis for automated maintenance or refactoring. Making code better i.e. higher quality or easier to maintain or reuse, without intense human effort creates obvious benefits.

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Open to PhD applications in the field of 

  • Software engineering including Automated Software Refactoring
  • Requirements Engineering and Evolution
  • Software Evolution prediction
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Research students

PhD title: Automated Software Maintenance using Search-Based Refactoring

Name: Michael Mohan
Years of Study: 2014 - 2018
Country: Northern Ireland


Alumni: where are they now?

Dr Sharon McGee

PhD title: Software Requirements Change Analysis and Prediction

Years of Study: 2008 - 2014
Country: Northern Ireland 
Current position: Senior Product Owner at Liberty Information Technology 

Dr Edzreena Edza Odzaly 

PhD Title: Semi-AutonomousRisk Management in Agile Development 

Years of Study: 2008 - 2013
Country: Malaysia
Current position: Senior Lecturer, Senior Lecturer, UniversitiTeknologi Mara, Malaysia 

Professor Liang Xiao 

PhD Title: The Adaptive Agent Model 

Years of Study: 2003 - 2006
Country: China
Current position: Professor of Computer Science, of Hubei University of Technology, China 

Research at Queen's

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