Nelly's Corner ( Nelly Bencomo )

nelly bencomo                                

Nelly Bencomo (PhD)                                                               
Lecturer in Computer Science
Aston University, UK
Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (HEA)

Web page at Aston

Member of
: Aston Lab for Intelligent Collectives Engineering,
SARI Aston Institute for Systems Analytics

e-mail: nelly at
School of Engineering and Applied Science,
Computer Science Group, MB212C
Aston University,
B4 7ET, Birmingham, UK
Phone ++44 (0)121 204 3392

Nelly at

Google Scholar citations 





Currently I am (co) teaching (2016-17)
   CS3360 Software Project Management (TP1)

   CS3910 Computational Intelligence (TP1)

   CS1410 Java Program Dvelopment (TP2)

OFFICE HOURS: you can make an appointment to see me either vi WASS here or by email .


I am looking for highly-motivated PhD students to work closely with me on the multi-disciplinary research areas in self-adaptive, self-aware systems and models@run.time. 

You can find more info of the research projects I would like to develop with my PhD students here

- The wokshop models@run.time at MODELS 2016 has been accepted. Consider submitting a paper to this workshop! (may 2016)

- My paper "QuantUn: Quantification of Uncertainty for the Reassessment of Requirements",
by Nelly Bencomo has been accepted in RE: Next! track at the 23rd International Requirements Engineering Conference RE'15 Ottawa, Canada, 24-28 Aug, 2015

Old News

Publications     Resume/CV(long) (short-2pagesResearch Statement    Teaching  Teaching Statement  PhD Opportunities with me   Miscellaneous (or the important stuff)

Summary about me: I am a lecturer in Computer Science in Aston University (School of Engineering and Applied Science). Before, I was a Marie Curie Fellow at INRIA Paris - Roquencourt. The Marie Curie project is called Requirements-aware Systems (nickname:  Requirements@run.time). Before, that I was a Senior Research Associate in Lancaster University (UK) where I also got my PhD and I am a Visiting Researcher. Earlier, I was a Lecturer (awarded tenure 2002) in the Computing School at the Universidad Central de Venezuela.

My research drivers:
    - The need of theory to better understand the world and to develop new methods
    - The pursuit of impact on better life and I seek to apply my methods on real-world applications
    - Curiosity
  [ - and  quiet frequently the pursuit of fun and happiness :) ]

I enjoy and can be productive working alone but I also enjoy collaboration and interdisciplinarity in my research activities.

My research context: Modern  software  systems  are  highly  distributed  and  software  engineering  (SE)  is  inherently  interdisciplinary, comprising both technical and human concerns.  SE provides me with my preferred style of research,which is collaborative and interdisciplinary. I seek to apply SE on real-world applications and that has taken me to work in research labs that are not inherently related to SE, such as the ARLES team in Inria- France(a lab on software architecture and distributed systems in French), the reflective middleware group in Lancaster University, a math models Lab at the UCV in Venezuela and more recently the research lab, which I co-founded, ALICE at Aston (the Aston Lab for Intelligent Collectives Engineering).  I have built a portfolio of successful collaborative and innovative research in areas such as decision making under uncertainty and distributed, self-adaptive and autonomous systems where I have successfully applied innovative SE techniques. A copy of my current research statement can be found here
Keywords: Decision making, Uncertainty, Self-adaptive and Highly Distributed Systems,  Systems of Systems, Models@run.time, MDE.
Further, I am interested in all aspects of software modelling and specially the application of model-driven techniques, during the development and operation of dynamically adaptive systems. Lately, I have focused on the quantification of uncertainty and the use of Bayesian learning to support decision-making for self-adaptatiom (see my publications). This work led me to co-found the International Workshop on Artificial Intelligence for Requirements Engineering (AIRE) with Professors Cleland-Huang (DePaul University, USA) and Rachel Harrison (Oxford Brookes University, UK).

With other colleagues I have coined the research topics models@run.time and requirements@run.time co-founding the 2 workshop series Models@run.time (usually run at the MODELS Conference) and Requirements@run.time.

I am also interested in giving some space to serendipity, an aspect of research that sometimes is forgotten, and having a bit of  life outside my job.

This is a list of my publications.

Current PhD Students

    Luis Hernan Garcia Paucar, since January 2016

    Ross Edwards, since October 2016

(students under my supervision in the past)

    Amel Belaggoun, Master Université de Versailles Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines and TELECOM SudParis and Inria, France, 2013

Teaching: In addition to my research record, I also have substantial teaching experience. I like teaching.

Since May 2013 I have been a lecturer at Aston University where I have had the opportunity to teach different modules (such as Java Programming, Computational Intelligence and Software Project Management) with different roles. I have been a module leader but also have shared the duties of modules with other staff members. I have also had other roles such as supervisor of Final Year Projects, Group projects, Personal tutor and Final Year Tutor for Computing for Business (2014-16).  

At Lancaster, I taught a first year module on Discrete Mathematics. I also design and taught the module Web Technologies (practice) and Computational Fundamentals (Theory). As a junior lecturer in the Computing School of the Universidad Central de Venezuela (UCV) in 2000-2003, most of my teaching focused on Statistics, Probability and Object-Oriented Simulation.

Students Supervision: At Aston, I am the supervisor for a PhD student investigating decision-making under uncertainty for self-adaptive systems who is currently in his 1st year. I have co-supervise several PhD Students, 2 in Brazil (with Prof. Thais Batista), 1 in Chile, and currently 1 student in Brimigham (with Dr. Rami Bahsoon) who started in 2015.

Professional Service and Activities:

Currently, I am co-ordinating

- 11th Workshop Models@run.time 2016 @ MODELS 2016, 2-7 October, 2016, France

Program committees

I am or have been a PC member of MODELS, RE, SEAMS, ESEC-FSE, ICSE-NIER, ASE, REFSQ, SAC-RE, CibSE,WICSA/ECSA. The full list can be found here.

I have co-ordinated:

- SEAMS 2014 Symposium Software Engineering for Adaptive and Self-Managing Systems (SEAMS), Hyderabad, India, June 2014
- Workshop Models@run.time 2006-2016
Workshop MoDRE 2013 (3rd International Model-Driven Requirements Engineering Workshop @ RE 2013) (Feb 2013)
- 1st Latin-American School on Software Engineering ELA-ES 2013
- 8th Workshop Models@run.time 2013 @ MODELS 2013
- Workshop  Modeling Outside the Box at MODELS 2013 @ MODELS 2013
- 7th International Workshop Models@run.time will run  in MODELS 2012 in Austria- Dagstuhl Seminar on Models@run.time , November 27 - December 2nd, 2011, Daghstul, Germany
- Workshop  2nd Requirements@run.time 2010 at RE'11,trento, Italy, 29th August - September 2th 2011
- Workshop Requirements@run.time 2010 at RE'10,Sydney, Australia, September 27th - October 1st 2010
- Workshop ViDaS'10   Validation and Verification of Dynamic Software Systems at the Third International Conference on Software Testing, Verification and Validation ICST 2010,Paris, France, April 6-9 2010
- Workshop Model-Driven Software Adaptation 07   M-ADAPT'07 at ECOOP'07, 30th July 2006, Berlin
- Working Meeting "Models and Aspects for Product Families: A Roadmap for Research"   1st Nov 2006, Lancaster, UK

This is my PhD dissertation. In my PhD research I explored how synergies between System Families, Model-Driven Engineering (MDE), and Generative Software Development (GSD) help to produce new development paradigms to support the life cycle including the phases design, programming, testing, deployment and also execution, of reflective middleware families.

A particular and novel contribution of my research is the modelling of two different dimensions of dynamic variability, namely structural variability and environment and context variability. I developed an approach called Genie as part of my PhD. The supervision of my PhD work was done by Prof. Gordon Blair.

In Lancaster, I was working for the project the EU CONNECT  I also worked for the EU DiVA (Dynamic Variability in complex, Adaptive systems) and the Divergent Grid project, an SPRC funded project.

Miscellaneous: in other words, what is really important!

When I am not working I like walking on the hills in the Lake District (I used to do it on a weekly basis, but family included a little one who is under training!), or running, or perhaps dancing or taking pictures or hanging around with my family and friends and of course Talisker my dog. I enjoy running by the canal in Birmigham. I wish I could have more time for these activities.

During my time in Paris I used to go Museums & Cafes :) if my daughter did not decide something else. I also did some exercise with my dog running near Inria and by the river Siene in Paris. Happy days!

I love eating good food and I am MAD about sushi. I LOVE chocolate, BTW dark and bitter chocolate, if it is not at least 75% Cocoa that is not chocolate :). If chocolate is from Venezuela even better!

Old News:

- Our paper Self-adaptive Probabilistic Roadmap Generation for Intelligent Virtual Agents was accepted for publication at the Eighth IEEE Conference on Self-Adaptive and Self-Organizing Systems (SASO) 2014, to be held in London, UK in September 2014.

- Surprise, surprise! Our paper "A world full of surprises: Bayesian theory of surprise to quantify degrees of uncertainty" by Nelly Bencomo and Amel Belaggoun accepted to *#icse2014, *#niericse2014

- Our paper "Supporting Decision-making for Self-adaptive Systems: From Goal Models to Dynamic Decision Networks" by N. Bencomo and A. Belaggoun  has been awarded the Best Paper Award of REFSQ'13,

-I am co-organizing

- SEAMS  2014   Symposium Software Engineering for Adaptive and Self-M