UL-based Lero secures €6 million in research funding from Huawei

Lero Director, Professor Brian Fitzgerald and Puneet Saidha, Acting Vice President Research, University of Limerick along with Frank Du, President of Huawei Sweden Research Centre, planting a Ginkgo tree outside the Lero offices in University of Limerick to mark the announcement of the research funding Picture: Alan Place

Lero, the Science Foundation Ireland Research Centre for Software based at University of Limerick, has secured a €6 million investment from Huawei to fund a research programme aimed at improving the reliability of software applications.

The investment funding is in joint cooperation with Huawei's Research Centre in Ireland and Sweden.

The announcement was made at Lero’s headquarters at University of Limerick (UL). Lero researchers from UL, Trinity College Dublin, NUI Galway and Dublin City University will take part in the four-year research programme which begins formally in early 2020.

The President of Huawei’s Sweden Research Centre, Frank Du and Yargin Xiao, President of Huawei’s Ireland Research Centre were in UL for the announcement. In August 2019, Huawei announced it would invest €70 million in Irish research and development over the coming three years.

Commenting about the announcement, Jijay Shen, CEO, Huawei Ireland said: “We consistently work with our key stakeholders to build positive relationships. Lero is a world-leading software research centre with expertise second to none in several advanced software engineering topics. We are delighted to begin working with them on this research programme.”

Lero Director, Professor Brian Fitzgerald, said: “Lero is working on implementing advanced software engineering techniques across a range of topics. This research programme brings together top software researchers from around Ireland to work with Huawei on a series of projects aimed at making software more efficient and reliable.”

“There has been a dramatic increase in both the volume and complexity of the software that needs to be produced globally. This project will help industry generate the best possible software over the four years of the strategic research partnership. As a company who have a strong record of research-led innovation, we look forward to working with Huawei on this programme,” he added.

It is expected that the four-year alliance will result in a number of leading-edge research projects on advanced software engineering topics, leading to dedicated knowledge transfer workshops and publications in major journals.

Commenting on the announcement Yargin Xiao, President of Huawei Ireland Research Centre said: “Huawei is proud to be involved in this programme. The research undertaken by Lero could be used to help guide research and best practice right across the world. Today’s announcement will give Lero researchers the support they need to further their research into software reliability while providing them with the opportunity to be acknowledged on the international stage.

To mark the launch of the programme between the SFI research centre and Huawei, Lero Director, Professor Brian Fitzgerald and Yargin Xiao, President of Huawei Ireland Research Centre along with Frank Du, President of Huawei Sweden Research Centre, planted a Ginkgo tree outside the Lero offices in UL. The tree’s leaf is the emblem of the research programme.

Concluding Frank Du, President of Huawei Sweden Research Centre said: “Collaboration is at the heart of everything we do at Huawei. I am proud that two of our research centres can work with Lero, one of Europe's leading software research centres to further our research into software. This is the beginning of an exciting journey.”