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ECS University of Southampton
This is now an inactive research group it's members have moved on. You can find them at their new research groups:

Individual research interests

Dr Seth Bullock

Research Interests: My research is driven by questions of evolution and self-organisation in biological systems and the way in which our understanding of these processes can help us better design and manage engineered systems. For example, can we learn lessons from the decentralised approach that termites take to constructing their mounds that will help us build more robust and evolvable large-scale software?

Links:: Spatially Embedded Complex Systems Engineering (SECSE) Amorphous Computation, Random Graphs and Complex Biological Networks

Life Sciences research areas: systems biology, animal behaviour, ethology, cognitive science, neuroscience, evolutionary biology, population genetics.

ECS research areas: information processing principles, optimisation, algorithms, machine learning, network optimisation/modelling, complexity theory.

Dr Srinandan Dasmahapatra

Research Interests: I am interested in the relationship between microscopic specification of systems and their systemic/macroscopic behaviour, which I like to think about in mathematical terms. In a cell biological context, this could involve the characterisation of system states, their updates and their propagation, where key components such as nucleic acids and proteins interact stochastically and are subject to turnover. I am also interested in applying principles of machine learning to guide experimental strategies in studying complex systems, and in building knowledge representation schemes for biomedical informatics.

Links: Biomedical Informatics

Life Sciences research areas: systems biology, immunology, gene regulatory networks, cognitive science.

ECS research areas: information processing principles, machine learning, knowledge representation and reasoning.

Dr Maurits de Planque

Research Interests: As a biophysicist I am interested in the interaction between biological molecules and nano/microfabricated structures, and the understanding and manipulation of biological self-assembly principles to enable the design of novel self-assembling bionano devices such as biosensors. I am a member of the SENSe and NSI research groups in ECS and interact with various life science groups in other Schools.

Life Sciences research areas: membrane biophysics, membrane-nanoparticle interactions, drug delivery, nanotoxicity, chemical biology.

ECS research areas: bionanotechnology, characterization of bio-functionalized nanostructures, modulation of electronic properties of nanostructures by biomolecules, biosensors.

Jason Noble

Research Interests: I use simulation models to study the selective pressures affecting the emergence and stability of specific animal behaviours and strategies. Behaviours of particular interest include communication (and ultimately language) as well as social learning (i.e., learning about the environment through the behaviour of others). Communication and learning both occur on social networks, and so I have a corresponding interest in network theory, particularly network sampling. Additionally, I'm interested in applying the above ideas to agent-based computing, and in their implications for cognitive science, artificial intelligence, and the philosophy of mind.

Life Sciences research areas:artificial life, artificial neural networks, behavioural ecology, cognitive psychology, cognitive science, computational biology, ethology, evolutionary biology, population genetics, simulation of adaptive behaviour

ECS research areas: agent-based computing, artificial intelligence, computer vision, evolutionary computation, graph theory, grid computing, machine learning, scientific computing.

Dr Richard A. Watson

Research Interests: My research is in 'algorithmic biology': the algorithmic (computational) principles common to both biological processes and computational methods. This includes both computational models of biological systems (computational biology) and computational methods inspired by biological systems (biologically inspired computation). For example, 'evolutionary algorithms' are a computational problem solving and optimisationmethod inspired loosely by Darwinian evolution: I am interested in these both as an optimisation method and as a model for better understanding the capacities of natural evolution. For example, 'evolutionary algorithms' are a computational problem solving and optimisationmethod inspired loosely by Darwinian evolution: I am interested in these both as an optimisation method and as a model for better understanding the capacities of natural evolution. For example, how do mechanisms such as sex and symbiosis affect the kind of problems that evolution can solve?

Links: algorithmic principles of evolution

Life Sciences research areas: genetics and genomics, evolutionary biology, population genetics.

ECS research areas: optimisation, algorithms, complexity theory.

Klaus-Peter Zauner

Research Interests: Elucidating nature's molecular level information processing and transfering the principles to artifical computing devices.

Life Sciences research areas: biochemistry, molecular biology, cell biology, genetics and genomics, systems biology,micro biology.

ECS research areas: nanotechnology, microtechnology/micro-devices, microfluidics, substrates for computation, information processing principles, algorithms, modelling.

Nicholas L Geard

Research Interests: My current research interests are focused on biological or technological systems that can be modelled as networks of simple, interacting components. I am interested in understanding: (a) the relationship between two types of dynamic process: those that occur on networks and those that shape the topology of networks; and (b) the role that physical, organisational and dynamic constraints play in the evolutionary design (natural or artificial) of decentralised biological and technological systems.

Life Sciences research areas: evolutionary and developmental biology, systems biology, social networks

ECS research areas: information processing principles, network theory, complexity theory, self-organising systems, agent-based modelling, simulation models

Soichiro Tsuda

Research Interests: Even a single cell shows enviable information processing capabilities to surmount complex situations, which is difficult and expensive to imitate with current silicon-based computing architectures. My research aims at exploiting those capabilities of living and non-living biological components for computing. In particular, I am interested in autonomous robot control using the plasmodium of true slime mould, Physarum polycephalum, an amoeba-like unicellular organism by applying techniques from bioelectronics.

Life Sciences research areas: Microbiology, cell biology, mycology, genetics, synthetic biology, biochemistry.

ECS research areas: Unconventional computing, robotics, microfluidics, bioelectronics, information processing principles, self-organising systems, emergent computing