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Professor Awais Rashid

Professor of Software Engineering
Associate Dean for Postgraduate Studies, Faculty of Science and Technology
Director, Science and Technology Graduate School
Coordinator of the European Network of Excellence on Aspect-Oriented Software Development
Laureate of the Pays de la Loire Regional Chair at Ecole des Mines de Nantes, France, 2008-2011


Room: C41
Tel: +44 (0) 1524 510316
Fax: +44 (0) 1524 510492
Email: awais


I am currently teaching the following courses:

CSc 375: Engineering eCrime Prevention Systems
CSM 011: Aspect-Oriented Software Development
CSM 051: Aspect-Oriented Software Development
CSc 255: Computer Science Innovation

Research Themes

Software Modularity and Composition
Empirical Software Engineering
Digital Forensics and Internet Safety
Software Engineering Ethics

Awais Rashid

Overview of Activities

As the Internet becomes increasingly pervasive in our daily lives, we are seeing the rise of the Digital World Phenomenon, where the former notions of cyberspace and physical world merge together. This new digital world brings new challenges for software systems and their developers. There is now an open space of services, which are highly adaptive and can be combined in ad-hoc ways to develop complex systems. Furthermore, the accessibility and pervasive nature of the Internet poses new challenges for safety and security that must be catered for when engineering software systems.

My research focuses on developing sustainable software for sustainable living in the digital world. This research is inherently multi-disciplinary drawing upon a range of topics such as software engineering, computational linguistics, sociology and criminology.

Sustainable software is software that is adaptable, evolvable and resilient in the face of the volatile and changing nature of user requirements and behaviours in the digital world. Sustainable living involves catering for key challenges for safety and security to counter the activities of those aiming to exploit the open nature of the digital world for criminal purposes.

In order to support engineering of sustainable software, my research focuses on novel software modularity and composition techniques, such as aspect-oriented software development, model-driven engineering, and feature-oriented development. I not only develop novel modularity and composition mechanisms but also focus on empirical evaluating their efficacy. These novel methodologies then underpin engineering of software systems for sustainable living. In this context I focus on issues of online child safety and anti-social behaviour. I am also very interested in the ethical challenges posed during the engineering of such software systems and how to address them in the core design of the systems.

My current and recent major research grants in the above areas are as follows:

I welcome PhD and post-doc enquires from candidates interested in any of the above areas.


Over the years I have acted in a number of community roles. I have regularly been invited to be a programme committee member for the International Conference on Aspect-Oriented Software Development (AOSD). I was the Organising Chair for the conference in 2004 and its Programme Co-Chair in 2006. Since 2006 I have been a member of the conference's steering committee and, from 2007, its executive committee. I have also acted as a programme committee member for the European Conference on Object-Oriented Programming (ECOOP). I am General Chair for ECOOP 2011, which will be held at Lancaster. I have also been a member of the Requirements Engineering Conference programme committee in 2008 and 2010 and several other events in my areas of research. I was the founding co-editor-in-chief of the journal Transactions on AOSD and am currently a member of its editorial board. I have published over 90 scholarly articles in major international conferences and journals, have edited several special issues of leading journals including Transactions on AOSD and IEEE Computer, authored/edited 3 books and given a number of invited talks, lectures and seminars.

The research I am leading in Isis on identifying evolving paedophile vocabulary in peer-to-peer file sharing networks featured in the Daily Telegraph and subsequently in over 18 countries internationally in 2009. In June 2010, my (and the project teamÕs) work with a school on giving pupils hands-on understanding of risks online, via Turing-test like exercises, and the project toolkitÕs accuracy in identifying masquerading adults (94%) made headline news in the UK (e.g., BBC 6 oÕ Clock News, various radio stations, The Independent) and internationally (e.g., German news Heute, Austrian radio, ABC News in Australia, The New Zealand Herald). I was also the lead author of the UK case study, based on Isis, for the Internet Governance Forum in 2009 (presented to and selected by Alun Michael MP).

Selected Publications

Below are five selected recent publications

R. Khatchadourian, P. Greenwood, A. Rashid, G. Xu (Undergoing final revisions). "Pointcut Rejuvenation: Recovering Pointcut Expressions in Evolving Aspect-Oriented Software", IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering

F. Ferrari, R., Ot‡vio A. Lemos, A. Garcia, E. Figueiredo, N. Cacho, F. Lopes, N. Temudo, L. Silva, S. Soares, A. Rashid, P. Masiero, T. Batista, J. Maldonado (2010). "An Exploratory Study of Fault-Proneness in Evolving Aspect-Oriented Programs", International Conference on Software Engineering (ICSE), ACM: 65-74.

A. Rashid, T. Cottenier, P. Greenwood, R. Chitchyan, R. Meunier, R. Coelho, M. SŸdholt, W. Joosen (2010). "Aspect-Oriented Software Development in Practice: Tales from AOSD-Europe", IEEE Computer 43(2): 19-26.

A. Rashid, J. Weckert, R. Lucas (2009). "Software Engineering Ethics in a Digital World", IEEE Computer 42(6): 34-41.

R. Coelho, A. Rashid, A. Garcia, F. Ferrari, N. Cacho, U. Kulesza, A. v. Staa, C. Lucena (2008). "Assessing the Impact of Aspects on Exception Flows: An Exploratory Study", European Conference on Object-Oriented Programming (ECOOP), Springer: 207-234.

A comprehensive list of my publications is also available on the DBLP Server

Full publication list for Awais Rashid