University of Nottingham Malaysia
School of Computer Science

PhD Scholarship

Project Title

A Framework to Implement Verified Resource-Bounded Systems for Smart Spaces

Funded By

  • Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MOSTI), Project 01-02-12-SF0269, Govt. of Malaysia
  • Faculty of Science, University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus

Project Description

The general objective of this project is to contribute to the development of functionally correct systems for smart spaces as well as to study the social impacts of a state-of- the-art prototype. More specifically, an interactive, distributed context-aware system development framework will be developed, which will take advantage of recent advances in the areas of ontology-based modelling and development, agent-based technology, formal verification using model checking, and Android Google SDK software development techniques. This prototype will be tailored to the specific needs of exploration of state-of-the art technologies to improve human lives; and particularly be suitable for development of systems for smart spaces. The general objective can be stated into the following five specific objectives that would together achieve the overall goal of the project:

(a) To develop decentralised heterogeneous reasoning model and verification framework for context-aware applications. And a toolkit that will facilitate automatic translation of a verified model into application program for deploying the resulting system.

(b) To tailor the functionality of this framework so that it is suitable for development of systems for smart spaces. 

(c) To develop formal techniques for effectively debug, trace, or understand the provenance of results of complex context-aware applications.

(d) To identify a suitable and efficient language for implementing context-aware systems using agent-based techniques. The main challenge would be to identify a language that will be flexible enough for implementing intelligent behaviour and at the same time the resulting program should run efficiently in a limited processing power and memory bounded device.

(e) To deploy a prototyping system in a chosen smart space to see whether increasing the functional correctness of context-aware systems using formal verification techniques make them more productive (functional correctness corresponds to the question whether the system works according to its design objectives). 

The project’s outcomes and more to the point, the generic interactive distributed context-aware verification and programming framework, the user-level environment in smart space, and the prototype that we will build, should be compared favourably with existing environments for presenting context-aware system for home health monitoring, elderly care and other domains, using semantic-web and other novel technologies.

The successful candidate will have a strong background in computer science/electronics or electrical engineering and must have excellent programming skills (particularly Java), also preferably having some knowledge of ontology and formal verification (specially model checking) will be added advantage. Some knowledge of, or interest in, rule-based reasoning and/or AI techniques, would be desirable. The successful candidate will collaborate with other researchers at UNMC.

Level: PhD
Scholarship: Stipend MYR 1700 per month (tax free) for 36 months + tuition fees
Contact details: Abdur Rakib, School of Computer Science, UNMC ( 


All applicants should read the entry requirements and eligibility criteria and applications must include: 

  1. A complete CV 
  2. One page research statement indicating what you see are interesting research issues relating to the above post and why your expertise is relevant. 
  3. 2 References 
  4. English language: Applicants must have one of the following English qualifications (by the time of admission):

  • IELTS: 6.0 (no elements below 5.5)
  • TOEFL (iBT): 79 (no elements below 19)
  • PTE (Academic): 55 (minimum 51)

IELTS and TOEFL test results must be less than 2 years old and all IELTS must be the academic version of the test.

Closing Date

8th August 2014

Posted on 24th June 2014

School of Computer Science

University of Nottingham Malaysia
Jalan Broga, 43500 Semenyih
Selangor Darul Ehsan

telephone: +6 (03) 8924 8000
fax: +6 (03) 8924 8018

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