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Institute of Advanced Studies in Cyber Security and Conflict (SoCyETAL)

The University has set Cyber Security as one of its strategic research areas and has decided to extend Kent interdisciplinary Research Centre in Cyber Security (KirCCS) into a larger unit.

SoCyETAL is built on the success of the Kent Interdisciplinary Research Centre in Cyber Security (KirCCS), which is one of only 19 centres in the UK to be recognised as an Academic Centre of Excellence in Cyber Security Research (ACE-CSR) by the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) and Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC).

SoCyETAL will extend the cyber-security research of KirCCS, especially its socio-technical security theme, into wider areas such as international conflict, cyber influence and behaviour, cybercrime, cyber law, and financial technology.

Alongside KirCCS, the new Kent Cyber Security Educational Centre (KeCSEC) has been established as one of the pillars of SoCyETAL’s activities. It will coordinate university wide teaching activities around cyber security, such as setting up a number of cyber security related interdisciplinary PGT programmes. SoCyETAL will also support the University’s Cyber Security Improvement Group (CSIG), which will be established later in 2021.

The Institute now has its own dedicated space in Keynes College, hosting the management team, core academic staff, administrative staff, research staff and PhD students, in order to promote exchanges and collaborations between researchers and lecturers across the Schools participating in SoCyETAL. The space includes lab space and a common room, for the exclusive use of SoCyETAL staff and students. There is also dedicated space for hosting both short and long-term visitors and for meetings to discuss interdisciplinary funding applications.

The current participating schools include:

Some members of the Institute will retain offices in their home schools, helping to strengthen the connections between SoCyETAL and the participating schools, for example through shared seminar series, joint PhD supervisions, and equipment sharing arrangements.

Similar to the structure of KirCCS, SoCyETAL will have Core Members from the above participating schools and Associate Members from more schools and disciplines.

We expect that the new physical space for the Institute will be ready in Autumn 2020 and officially launched in Summer 2021.