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Notes from VP discussion between part of CSE Steering group (ILG) and the Software Technology division

Date for meeting
2014‐09‐19, 10‐12


Peter Lundin (Deputy Head), Birgitta Gustafsson (Dep. Economist), Miroslaw Staron (Vice Head of Undergraduate Education), Koen Claesson Lindström (former Vice Head of Graduate Education) and Sofie Jansson (HR).
Software Technology (ST)
Patrik Jansson (Head of division), David Sands (Prof.), Christer Carlsson (Associate Prof.) and Gerardo Schneider (Prof.)

1 Short about the aim and structure of the meeting. (Attached in this document)

2 Short information about status in different areas of the ST division’s activity.

The income for ST 2014 is roughly; 16 Mkr from Edu, 7 Mkr from faculty and 29 Mkr from external sources.

More than half of the budget is from external sources. The future for external funding is hard to predict, all external research projects are for rather short periods (1-5 Years). It has been like this for a long time. The trend is increasing but it could start going down any year. On the other hand the majority of the employees are also on 1-5 year contracts so the research part can fairly easily adjust.

There are 49 employed, 14 Senior Faculty (permanent positions) of which 3,5 are full time teachers, 14 Junior Faculty (Ass. Prof. or PostDoc), 19 PhD students and 2 guest researchers.

The division has initiated a working group for defining requirements for two permanent positions that will be open for application and employment during 2015. One docent position and probably one with more focus on teaching.

Preliminary 2 Professor, 1 Bitr. Prof, 1 lecturer (adjunct) to associate prof., 4 expected to apply for ‘oavlönad docent’.

No known critical retirements or other loss of personnel during 2015.

Large part of funding is from VR. Division might be more active in applying for EU research funding’s. For the moment there are two ongoing FP7 grants: ERC (AnSa) and PROWESS (JoHu) and one just granted application (GRACeFUL, PaJa) regarding EU Horizon 2020 from the division. Several other applications are under evaluation.

There are some preliminary plans for applying for Marie Curie funding.

One thing that came up is that more EU-projects would require more (proj.adm. / economy) support.

Currently roughly one third of the teaching is done by the Teach group (3.5 lecturers), one third by the rest of the senior faculty (10 lecturers) and one third by the Junior faculty (PostDocs and AssProfs).

That this last third is on short term contracts could be problematic in the future because the Junior Faculty is mainly funded from external sources.

The full time teachers (4 persons) are responsibly for a number of Bachelor courses with a demand of Swedish language in teaching. Most of this group of teachers will retire in the next five years.

The Junior Faculty group contains at least six who can talk native Swedish. This indicates a possible solution for the recruitment of Swedish speaking teachers.

The situation for the Lindholmen based BSc‐ engineering programs was discussed. The division is responsible for four of the courses in the DI‐program. Three in year two of the program is running at Lindholmen and is all done by the same teacher from ST (UnHo). The fourth is running at Johanneberg since a couple of years due to the fact it is in the third year in which most of the students take courses at Johanneberg. The problem, that have been for several years, is that there are very few teachers from CSE present at Lindholmen involved in the programmes courses. This is more of a problem for CSE than for ST.

Working environment
You can't notice any sign of bad working environment in the annual employee survey. The results compared to Chalmers are very good and some low figures regarding the top level goals have increased a lot this year.

3. Regarding the written answers from the division

A look through the division’s written answers (Attached to this document) on the questions from ILG with some follow-up discussion. The following notes represent the most important part of the answers.

  • There are different models for calculate the education workload for the teachers, assistants and special for the education task for PhD‐students.
  • There is a need of more administrative support for applying and running projects, especially EU (project management and economy …)
  • There is a need for a model which shows the benefits for researchers to set up and give a PhD course. Maybe we should have a budget for PhD‐courses. PaJa informed that part of the general faculty money (from the government) is clearly aimed at the PhD education (including courses). During the discussion it was mentioned that several MSc courses can be (and are) used to cover the parts of the PhD course demand of 60hec. One problem seems to be that information about this isn’t good enough.
  • Machine Learning is an area of growing importance that we lack competence in and ST proposes that CSE build up competence in this area.
  • Courses in Swedish for at least all AssProf and all permanent faculty members is needed. GeSc in particular asked for intensive courses (many ours in short time) including practice of speaking.
  • We need to update the two first year's of BSc‐programmes courses. They have been nearly the same for quite a while now.
  • ST div. teachers don’t feel any connection to the different programmes and discussion regarding the courses and their contents.

4 A very short notice from the CSE strategy meeting regarding the education.

Minutes from the strategy meeting has been delivered to divisions.

5 Summary, conclusion.

The division shall hand in a short list of Actions to work on during 2015 as a follow up on this meeting. The document is handed in to Eva Axelsson by 2014‐10‐02.

The document VP‐ST is good and describes many actual issues to solve mostly on Department Level. The text under section 3 above sums up the discussed issues.

We will consider:

  • Need of Machine Learning and Compiler knowledge (Last part was not discussed but was mentions in the VP document)
  • Project support
  • Equal models across divisions for calculating and planning the education workload.
  • Model with benefits for researchers to set up and give a PhD course.
  • Information to PhD students regarding possible MSc courses to include in the mandatory 60hec.
  • The problem with too few teachers present at Lindholmen.

6 Feedback

Most agreed that the discussion were rather good and necessary.

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Page last modified on September 23, 2014, at 07:38 PM