Secure and Dependable Software Systems Research Cluster


The SenSe cluster aims to develop novel and pragmatic ways to assure the dependability of software systems with particular emphasis on security, trust and risk. We focus on theories from model-based engineering and analysis-based assurance to develop methods, models, practices and tools that promote the provision of security and dependability in complex interconnected and heterogeneous systems and information infrastructures that underpin our economy and society.


Today’s economy and society are vitally dependent on software (computer) systems supporting important and critical human activities such as storage of confidential medical data, real-time banking transactions and protection of critical infrastructure. It is therefore important that such systems operate not just according to their specifications but also with trust and security. The cluster brings together unique expertise within the University of Brighton to pioneer research for secure and dependable software systems and develop an innovation platform that supports the local community and industry.


However, the wide-spread usage of software systems, their highly distributed and interconnected nature, and the provision of new technological advancements (such as Big Data, Cloud Computing, Internet of Things) means that developing dependable software systems goes well beyond mono-dimensional technical solutions and it raises a set of tightly intertwined research issues in different areas of computer science including software engineering, information security, artificial intelligence, human computer interaction, and natural language processing.


In fact the development of such systems has been transformed, in recent years, from a mono-dimensional technical challenge to a multi-dimensional socio-technical challenge, where the technical dimension (i.e. challenges and problems associated with available technology and the infrastructure of software systems) needs to be considered within the context of the social dimension (i.e. challenges and problems related to humans and processes). Hence, a more holistic approach to the engineering of secure software systems is required, different from the traditional technical only treatment of security, which considers security from the early stages of the development process, at multiple levels and from multiple angles; it combines people, technology and processes.

Our Mission

Our mission is to perform world–class research that delivers innovation, knowledge and new practices, for the development of secure and dependable software systems, and improves human trust on software systems. We are committed to support local communities through knowledge transfer and education and create theoretic, applied, industry and education impact.


We will achieve this through the development of languages, ontologies, architectural definitions, models, processes, methodologies and automated techniques to support the consideration of security, trust and dependability as integral aspects of the software systems engineering process, at multiple levels and from multiple angles and it combines people, technology and processes.


We focus on applied software engineering techniques in an industrial context, where security and dependability are essential concerns. As such, we explore and establish our work across new technological paradigms such as Cloud Computing, Internet of Things and Big Data that change the present and shape the future of software systems and their role in society.