Research Fellow/ Research Assistant - SDN Security Solutions


To contribute to the design and development of network security solutions within a Software-Defined Network environment. To research architectures for SDN switch-based network attack detection/protection functions. To develop a prototype implementation of the SDN switch-based security functions. To be an active member of the SDS research cluster, and the School of EEECS at Queen’s, assisting in the production of world-leading research output and the development of new research initiatives in the broader area of network security research.


Investigate architectures for SDN switch-based network security solutions using the OpenFlow multi-table architecture.
Design and develop data-plane network security solutions for deployment within a Software-Defined Network environment.
Analyse the implementation of network security solutions at the data plane of the SDN.
Design, develop and refine experimental system hardware, and conduct research experiments with this hardware in order to obtain reliable data.
Carry out analyses, critical evaluations, and interpretations using methodologies and other techniques appropriate to network security systems research.
Present regular progress reports on research to members of the research group or to external audiences to disseminate and publicise research findings.
Prepare, often in consultation with the supervisor, material for publication in national and international journals and presentations at international conferences.
Assist grant holder in the preparation of funding proposals and applications to external bodies.
Carry out routine administrative tasks associated with the research project/s to ensure that project/s are completed on time and within budget. Carry out occasional undergraduate (final year, MEng) project supervision, demonstrating or lecturing duties within the postholder’s area of expertise and under the direct guidance of a member of academic staff. Read academic papers, journals and textbooks to keep abreast of developments in own specialism and related disciplines.

Planning and Organising:

  • Plan for project deliverables in timescales ranging from three to twelve months in advance and contribute to research group planning.
  • Plan for the use of research resources, laboratories and workshops where appropriate.
  • Plan own day-to day activity within framework of the agreed research programme. Plan up to a year in advance to meet deadlines for journal publications and to prepare presentations and papers for conferences.
  • Coordinate and liaise with other members of the research group over work progress.

Resource Management Responsibilities:

  • Configure, install and upgrade SDN testbed facilities, including servers, networking equipment and storage systems along with the necessary software libraries.
  • Ensure research resources are used in an effective and efficient manner.
  • Provide guidance as required to support staff and any students who may be assisting with research.




Internal and External Relationships:

  • Liaise on a regular basis with colleagues and students in the SDS Cluster, the School of EEECS and faculties in Queen’s
  • University Belfast to build research collaborations.
  • Collaborate with staff in industry, other universities and other research institutes nationally and internationally as appropriate.
  • Join external international networks such as ONF for training and sharing information and ideas.


  • Research Fellow: Hold or be about to obtain a relevant PhD in Computer Science, Computer Engineering, Electrical/Electronic
  • Engineering or a related field.
  • Research Assistant : Hold or be about to obtain a relevant MSc.
  • Research Fellow: At least 3 years of relevant research experience.
  • Research Fellow: Expertise in programming with C/C++/Java.
  • Research Fellow: Good understanding of network protocols.
  • Research Assistant: Expertise in programming with C/C++/Java.
  • Research Assistant: Some practical experience of applying specialist skills and techniques required for the role.
  • Research Assistant: Sufficient breadth or depth of specialist knowledge in the discipline and of research methods and techniques to work within own area.
  • Ability to contribute to research management and administrative processes.
  • Contribute to the School’s outreach programme by links with industry, community groups etc.
  • Sufficient breadth and depth of specialist knowledge in the discipline and of research methods and techniques to work within established research programmes. Good understanding of the OpenFlow protocol.
  • Good understanding of network security.
  • Ability to communicate complex information clearly.
  • Ability to build contacts and participate in internal and external networks.
  • Demonstrable intellectual ability.
  • Ability to assess and organise resources.
  • Ability to travel and present at international conferences and meetings.


  • Research Assistant: Working towards a relevant PhD.
  • Research Fellow: Good hardware design and development skills in VHDL.
  • Research Fellow: At least one year of experience with the use of open-source software, demonstrated through contribution to an open-source project.
  • Research Fellow: Experience in EU or RCUK projects, in particular in project task management and reporting through periodic deliverables.
  • Research Fellow: Experience working with external industrial or academic partners.
  • Research Fellow: Experience in producing timely technical documentation on research projects (deliverables, reports).