Industry Collaboration

Industry Collaboration

The Department of Computing Science embraces ties with Industry, for collaboration on research activities, including, for example, co-funding PhD placements or larger scale academic projects, industrial placement co-supervision of our students, or research collaboration with research staff.

Research Collaboration with Industry

The Department is keen to achieve impact with its work by collaborating with industry to address challenging research problems in the real world. Forms of engagement can include consultancy, partnering on research proposals, and funding internships or research students.

Our expertise is centred around Artificial Intelligence and Cybersecurity, and includes:

  • Data Science
  • Machine Learning
  • Computer Vision
  • Robotics
  • Natural Language Processing
  • System Optimisation
  • Decision Support Systems and Autonomous Systems
  • Blockchain
  • Secure Software-defined Networking
  • Secure edge/fog computing
  • User-centric security
  • Identity Management
  • Web Security
  • Privacy-enhanced Technologies
  • Security in 5G & Beyond Networks.

The nature of collaborations can be in terms of defining shared projects (large and small), internships and research studentships; knowledge transfer; and consulting.

Examples of recent successful research collaborations include department members working with Arria NLG and a PhD research project with Siemens Energy Industrial Turbomachinery Ltd.

If you'd like further information on ways of working with us, please contact Matthew Collinson (e:


Industrial Placement

Students can spend either a year on industrial placement, or during the summer between their third and fourth years during their studies of Computing Science. It is an excellent opportunity for students to gain first-hand professional experience of working in industry. All of our degrees can include a year's placement in industry, local government, etc. undertaken in either the fourth or fifth year. Successful completion leads to the award of an MSci.  A year of industrial placement can be taken either between the third and forth year of studies or after the fourth year. Students who successfully complete a CS50IP-style placement, and otherwise fulfil the requirements for an honours degree, will be awarded an MSci degree "with industrial placement" (not to be confused with an MSc) to acknowledge the fact that these degrees take five years. Find out more.

Aberdeen Software Factory

The Aberdeen Software Factory is a student-run software house started in 2009 so that students can gain experience working on larger software projects. Students benefit from work experience, while clients will benefit from a flexible, cost-effective solution in which their application is developed to suit their needs. We continue to bring our agile, lean, and service design approaches to projects. We provide incremental delivery of the most important parts of the client projects in timely two-week iterations. We are flexible and work with changing priorities as determined by clients. Learn more about Aberdeen Software Factory here.

If you are interested in learning more about the Aberdeen Software Factory, or becoming a client, please contact Bruce Scharlau (e:

About the Department

Computing Science currently has 27 members of academic staff, together with around 40 doctoral researchers and PhD students. The University and School of Natural and Computing Sciences have begun to execute ambitious plans that will see Computing Science rapidly expand in the near future. Data Science & Artificial Intelligence have been recognised as a priority for the University as part of its Aberdeen 2040 strategy.

The School’s strategic focus lies across the themes of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Trust, Identity, Privacy and Security (TIPS), and our researchers work at the intersection of theory and application within these areas.

Within AI, application domains include cybersecurity, energy, food technology and healthcare, while theoretical research encompasses human/machine collaboration, natural language technologies and explanation, as well as machine learning and multi-agent systems. The TIPS theme focuses on computational trust and reputation systems; cybersecurity; provenance; and blockchain technologies - with application areas including healthcare and the digital economy.

Research is underpinned by a strong and broad funding portfolio around Artificial Intelligence and Cybersecurity, with nearly £4m in funding secured over the past five years. Around 90% of the department's research is recognised as world-leading or internationally excellent (3* or 4*, REF2021). Much of the research is interdisciplinary in nature, covering areas such as renewable energy, decommissioning, and healthcare.

Our students come from our undergraduate Computing Science programme, our postgraduate programmes in Artificial Intelligence, Information Technology, and Cybersecurity, or are PhD students working with members of staff in our department. Our courses, such as the one-year MSc programmes, can be taken by students aiming to learn content for the first time, or experienced industry professionals seeking to update their skillset to reflect the fast-changing landscape of technology and AI.