This research group focuses on processes, tools and techniques required to develop and commission large complex systems. It addresses all the phases of a typical system life cycle and includes enterprise, project and technical processes as typically identified by ISO/IEC 15288. This group fulfils a number of roles during the execution of its responsibilities, most of these in collaboration with other systems engineers and technical specialists in a team approach. The group was established to foster systems engineering skills and to research challenging questions relating to such complex projects.
Growing the skills base
The current skills base is founded on experience gained by key individuals over many years. By continuing to apply these individuals in SE consulting roles to projects and actively supporting involvement with the International Council of Systems Engineering (INCOSE) and SE standards development, the skills are grown due to additional experience gained and exposure to world-class best practices.
Establishing a framework of required skills
To assist efforts of growing SE skills, a means to identify and baseline the required skills was needed. The SE core competencies framework compiled by the INCOSE UK Chapter was identified as a viable means to achieve this. The skills assessment is currently under way. Once the current skill levels are identified, gaps can be assessed and specific training needs identified.
Identifying and investigating training options
In parallel to the skills assessment, training options were investigated to establish a baseline training course for SE. Such a course has been identified and will be presented during 2007 for the first time. The basic training will establish the baseline from which more detailed training on specific topics can be conducted to address identified gaps.
Significant effort has been put into identifying suitable research topics in the challenging field of SE. In this regard, the activities of INCOSE have been taken into account and the the field of human or people engineering and its impact on the development of resilient systems have been identified. A suitable field of research is specifically on the (concept and development) systems used to develop complex systems. In this regard, the SE group is already contributing to the INCOSE Resilient Systems Working Group. A more detailed research proposal will be published towards the end of this financial year.