Robot being fixed by computer engineer

Computational intelligence research

Explore our work in computational intelligence, one of the areas of expertise within our Computing research

Our computational intelligence research studies computational paradigms, with the aim of designing and developing algorithms which can be implemented with human machine systems – such as computational paradigms for artificial intelligence, human motion-sensing and analytics (for applications such as the diagnosis of children with autism spectrum disorders), and human and machine/robot interaction.

The work we're doing is pushing research boundaries in both theoretical computational challenges and practical systems development, and our research is already making an impact – the NHS has used our work to develop new rehabilitation methods for stroke rehabilitation, and our development of the DREAM (Development of Robot-Enhanced Therapy for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders) system is helping shape policy decisions regarding the teaching of autistic children in school.

Our research is regularly published in leading journals within the field, including IEEE Transactions on Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering, IEEE Sensor Journal, IEEE Transactions on Industrial Electronics and IEEE Transactions on Human Machine Systems.

Our research covers the following topics


  • Probability Graphical Models
  • Deep Learning
  • Big Data
  • Data Mining
  • Rule-based Reasoning
  • Heuristic Global Optimisation
  • Genetic Algorithms
  • Fuzzy Qualitative Reasoning
  • Prosthetic Hand Control
  • Myoelectric Sensing
  • Ultrasonic Sensing
  • Wearable Device
  • Motor Function Rehabilitation
  • Robot-enhanced Therapy
  • ASD Intervention
  • Gaze Estimation
  • Limb Motion Recognition
  • Muscle Activity Evaluation

Methods and facilities

Our research makes use of the latest computational intelligence and their variants – from classic AI algorithms to recent developments such as deep learning techniques.

The University is also home to outstanding facilities, including:

  • DREAM robot-enhanced therapy systems for diagnosis of children with autism spectrum disorders
  • iLimb prosthetic hand system
  • A Sawyer Robot System for human-robot interaction/collaboration
  • Kinects and Cameras for human motion
  • Analysis or object tracking
  • 2 NAO Robots for human-robot interaction/collaboration
  • 3Workstations to run deep learning algorithms
  • SJTU multi-fingered robotic hand system
  • 16 channel surface EMG capturing system
  • Ultra-sound detection system for forearm gesture recognition
  • Tobi Pro Nano System for gaze tracking

Partnerships and funding

Recent funders for our research include the European Union's 7th Framework Programme (EU FP7), the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and a host of local industrial partners – and we also have excellent partnerships within academia and industry, including:

  • London Garden School – with whom we collaborated on the evaluation of the DREAM system, which aims to improve the daily life and education of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) children
  • Hobbs Rehabilitation Centre – the centre supports our applications of ultrasound and sEMG (surface electromyography) devices in the rehabilitation of people with upper-limb difficulties
  • NHS Foundation Trust – we've worked with the NHS on the application of intelligent sensing and interpretation within elderly care and rehabilitation
  • Our DREAM EU partners – University of Skövde, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Universitatea Babeş-Bolyai, Plymouth University, De Montfort University, and Aldebaran Robotics
  • CC Initiative Ltd, UK – a collaboration in smart sensing and machine learning, funded by Horizon 2020 (H2020), the largest-ever EU Research and Innovation programme
  • Bournemouth University, University of Picardie Jules Verne, The French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission, NHS Foundation Trust, Bath University – with whom we're ollaborating on an Interreg project of upper-limb power-assist exoskeleton robot based on cloud computing and sEMG.
  • Imperial College London – a collaboration, on an EPSRC project, relating to ultra-sound and sEMG based prosthetic hand control

Discover our areas of expertise

Computational intelligence is one of our areas of expertise in Computing – explore the other areas below.

Cyber security

We're working to improve the security of the systems used to access assets, and to make the way people access them more secure.
Female cyber security worker working at computer
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Systems and information systems

We're exploring how technology and professionals can support the strategic, managerial and operational activities of a business.
Close-up shot of computers in server room
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Health informatics

We're improving the design of computer systems and wellbeing services to make the delivery of healthcare more efficient and cost-effective, and we're exploring how technology can influence lifestyle choices and reduce health risks.
doctor studying vitals on tablet computer
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Research groups

Computational Intelligence Research Group

We're researching the analysis, design and applications of computational intelligence methodologies.


Intelligent and Networked Systems Research Group

We're researching intelligence, interaction and communication over the networked systems that are key aspects of today's connected world.


Innovative Industrial Research Group

We're researching how to improve industrial performance through the integration of AI in products and services.

Interested in a PhD in Computing?

Browse our postgraduate research degrees – including PhDs and MPhils – at our Computing & Information Systems and Health Informatics postgraduate research degree pages.