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Researcher in AI/Data Science for Cybersecurity (fixed term for 24 months)

Birmingham City University - School of Computing and Digital Technology

METCloud and The School of Computing and Digital Technology at Birmingham City University (BCU) are looking to appoint a high calibre graduate in the broad area of Data Analytics, Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning Artificial Learning (AI/ML).  Birmingham City University is a large and diverse place to study right in the heart of Birmingham City Centre.  The School of Computing and Digital Technology (CDT) has research centres which specialise in Digital Media and Technology, Cybersecurity, Intelligent Systems and Networks, and Data Analytics and AI. CDT currently conducts a range of research, innovation, and enterprise projects funded by a range of bodies including Innovate UK (including KTPs), Horizon 2020, Erasmus+ and Orange Telecommunications.

The School of Computing and Digital Technology at Birmingham City University (BCU) is partnering with MetCloud on a 24 month Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP).   METCloud has been awarded dozens of internationally recognised awards for innovation. Its cloud-based cybersecurity services include Security Operation Centre (SOC), Vulnerability scanning as a service (VSaaS), Network Operation Services (NOC) Platform as a Service (PaaS), Backup and Business continuity as a service, Edge Computing security and Information Security Management Services. Its clients traverse most vertical sectors such as Finance, Insurance, Legal, Manufacturing, Construction and Health.

This position forms part of the Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) programme co-funding by a grant through Innovate UK.  It is essential you understand how KTP works with business and the University, and the vital role you will play if you successfully secure this position. KTPs offer a wide range of benefits including access to a £4,000 Personal Development budget to upskill during the project. For more information on KTP please go to

The successful graduate will be employed by the University and will be based full time at MetCloud in Birmingham (B15 3DH) where they will lead on the technical development of the project and be supported by academics from BCU’s School of Computing and Digital Technology. 

The position is for 24 months. The expected start date is as soon as is practical. Candidates will require high level experience in Artificial Intelligence (AI), Data Science and Cybersecurity.

The Role and Responsibilities:

The purpose of the KTP is to utilise the latest Data Analytics, Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning techniques to enhance and supplement METCloud’s technology base, enabling a range of innovative services to be brought to market addressing the advanced needs of enterprise customers and the budgets of smaller companies. The project will also transfer expertise to METCloud and explore and embed innovation processes.

Duties will include:

  • Develop an understanding of the managed cybersecurity operations marketplace and METCloud’s business, processes, and technology base.
  • Evaluate the potential for use of AI and Data Science techniques, individually and in combination, to extract actionable intelligence from event data gathered in the course of cybersecurity operations.
  • Based on this evaluation, lead a discussion with METCloud and BCU teams aimed at defining one or more candidate AI-enabled services/applications.
  • Design, implement and enhance proof-of-concept prototypes of the above.
  • Conduct presentations and demonstrations to stakeholders aimed at deciding whether and how the prototypes should be exploited.
  • Document the prototypes and transfer knowledge and software to the METCloud development team, and assist with integration and productization.
  • Support METCloud’s marketing by means of demonstrations to customers, providing material for white papers, etc.
  • Write academic papers and technical reports based on the project results.
  • Embed a knowledge of applicable AI and Data Science techniques in METCloud, including by means of tutorial sessions giving METCloud staff an appreciation of and technical grounding.
  • In conjunction with METCloud staff, develop a strategic and ambitious long-term plan for the use of AI technology within the company.

Personal Attributes:

The successful candidate will be; 

  • a creative, adaptable, self-motivated applied researcher able to learn new skills and put them into practice rapidly. 
  • an analytical thinker and problem solver with excellent computational skills.
  • proactive in proposing and carrying out lines of investigation, seeking guidance from the company and university supervision term when appropriate. 
  • able to work independently and with multi-skilled teams.
  • an effective communicator with managers, technical staff and academics, verbally and in writing.
  • appreciative of business issues and able to relate unmet requirements to technology-enabled opportunities.
  • driven by a desire to see original ideas put into practice

Skills and Experience:


  • a good first degree (2:1 or better) in Computer Science or a related subject.
  • a postgraduate degree (MSc or preferably PhD) in AI, Data Science or a related subject or equivalent practical experience in industry.
  • proven software architecting, design and development ability and extensive practical experience with one or more programming languages used in AI and Data Science (e.g. Python, Java, R, etc.)
  • knowledge of agile software development methods and tools.
  • in depth experience in at applying least one of AI, Machine/Deep Learning, Data Analytics, Visual Analytics.
  • Good knowledge of ML frameworks (eg. Keras or PyTorch) and libraries (eg. scikit-learn)
  • Good understanding of data processing and visualisation tools (e.g Python Numpy Pandas etc)
  • Good understanding of best practice in data collection, wrangling, pre-processing and feature engineering
  • solid appreciation of cybersecurity issues


  • Hands on experience deploying and using SIEM, Big Data, or related platforms (e.g. ELK) would be an advantage.

For more information on the role please contact Shereen Fouad at or Paul Kearney at 

Applications from job seekers who require Tier 2 sponsorship to work in the UK are welcome and will be considered alongside all other applications. However, non-EEA candidates may not be appointed to a post if a suitably qualified, experienced and skilled EU/EEA candidate is available to take up the post as the employing body is unlikely, in these circumstances, to satisfy the Resident Labour Market Test. The UK Visas and Immigration department requires employers to complete this test to show that no suitably qualified EEA or EU worker can fill the post. For further information please visit the UK Visas and Immigration website.

Please note on occasions where we receive a large number of applications, we may close the advert ahead of the publicised closing date. If this does happen, we will contact all candidates via email who have started but not yet completed their application, giving 48 hours’ notice.  We would therefore advise that you submit your completed application as soon as possible.

Birmingham City University are an equal opportunities employer and welcomes applications from all sections of the community.

Birmingham City University ('BCU') is committed to protecting your personal data and being transparent about what we do with your personal data. One of the ways we do this is through our privacy notices. For further information please click here

Location: Birmingham
Salary: £35,000 to £45,000 per annum
Hours: Full Time
Contract Type: Fixed-Term/Contract
Placed On: 22nd September 2020
Closes: 25th October 2020
Job Ref: 092020-314
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