Lead Investigator at University of Salford
My name is Sunil Vadera and I am a Lead Investigator at the University of Salford.
Tell us about your role and what you’ll be doing for the AI Foundry:
I’ve worked in the AI field for over 30 years, and have always recognised the need to close the gap between theory and application of AI, so it’s a real pleasure to lead the University of Salford’s contribution to the project, coordinating our contributions and supporting the use of AI by SMEs
What excites you the most about the programme?
AI is exciting in it itself and over the years I have worked with many SMEs, especially via the Innovation UK’s Knowledge Partnership Programme. What’s different about this programme for me is that it brings together multi-disciplinary expertise, not just across Salford, but also across our partners to support SMEs at a time when it is most needed and can have the biggest economic impact on our region.
Driven by the desire to close the gap between theory and practice in data mining and AI, something he has been doing for over two decades by working with industry. Examples of his work includes:
- Developing new models for real time sensor validation of gas turbines in collaboration with the Mexican Instituto de Electricas
- Data mining of near miss explosions data for project funded by and in collaboration with the Health and Safety Executive
- Analysis of SMART meters data of over 40,000 households for British Gas that aimed to gain insight into consumer behaviour
- An FP7 funded project on Self-Learning Energy Efficient Buildings and Open Spaces
- Analysing factors affecting children in need and troubled families
- Credit risk assessment for sub-prime lending aimed at improving financial inclusion
His main line of research in recent years has been in the field of cost-sensitive learning, where he has developed novel algorithms and in deep learning, where he is studying methods of reducing the size of the neural networks.
His research has been published in some of the leading outlets in the field, including the Computer Journal, ACM Transactions on Knowledge Discovery from Data, ACM Computing Surveys, Journal of the Operational Research Society, Expert Systems Journal, Foundations of Science, and IEEE Transactions of Power Systems.
Sunil Vadera is a Professor of Computer Science at the University of Salford. He is a Fellow of the British Computer Society, a Chartered Engineer (C.Eng) and a Chartered IT Professional (CITP). He has held many leadership roles including:
- Dean of the School of Computing, Science and Engineering,
- Head of Computer Science,
- Associate Dean of Research,
- Director of Informatics Research Institute.
- Chair and Vice-Chair of British Computer Society (BCS) Accreditations Committee from 2007 to 2010, which has responsibility for accreditation of the UK degrees in Computing.
Sunil was awarded the UK BDO best Indian Scientist and Engineer in 2014 and the Amity award for Research contributions to AI and Neural Networks in 2018.
Sunil gained a first-class BSc(Hons) in Computer Science and Mathematics from the University of Salford in 1982, receiving three best student prizes. He holds a PhD from the University of Manchester in the area of Formal Methods of Software Development which was awarded in 1992. Following graduation, he began his career as a Research Assistant and progressed to a Lectureship in Computer Science in 1984. He was promoted to a Senior Lecturer in 1997 and to a Chair in Computer Science in 2000.