The University plays a key role in High Integrity and Safety Critical Software (HI&SCS) as 'the critical enabling technology' for modern defence platforms, network-enabled capability and complex infrastructure. The university set up the Software Systems Engineering Initiative (SSEI) to be its major initiative to improve technology and practice in this area.
SSEI is a Ministry of Defence-funded centre of excellence in software engineering and is a 'virtual team' led by BAE Systems. The initial research work has a strong presence in the Department of Computer Science at York. YorkMetrics, a University spin-off company, is also involved.
Management and research work will also include IBM; MBDA; QinetiQ; Aerosystems International; the Systems Engineering Innovation Centre at Loughborough University; Newcastle University; EDS, Selex, Oxford University and Dstl.
The Initiative is intended to enhance through-life capability management for software intensive defence systems, and thus to reduce risks, delays and cost overruns. It funds a number of industrially relevant research projects (e.g., on safety standards and systems integration) and provides a rich body of expertise in software engineering.
Professor John McDermid, head of the Department of Computer Science at the University of York, is the SSEI's Technical Director, and the SSEI operates out of premises on the York Science Park.