Centre for Security, Communications and Network Research (CSCAN)

The Centre for Security, Communications and Network Research (CSCAN) is an established research group, comprising staff from the School of Engineering, Computing and Mathematics at the University of Plymouth.

Since 1984 the centre has operated under a number of names as the scope of our research has extended (see history below). We currently have 15 full time academic staff linked to the research centre with supervision responsibility for over 60 postgraduate research students based in Plymouth and overseas (including our CSCAN Network nodes).

CSCAN has a proven research pedigree, including both collaborative work with industry and participation in European research initiatives. The work has led to many successful postgraduate projects, as well as numerous publications. In addition to an active base of postgraduate and postdoctoral research, our research also underpins a number of MSc and MRes programmes. We are also able to offer tailored short courses and other Continuing Professional Development support (please contact us (info@cscan.org) for further details).

CSCAN - our history

  • 1984: Network Research Group (NRG) founded by Professor Peter Sanders within the Department of Communication Engineering (under the former Plymouth Polytechnic)
  • 1998: Founding of the International Network Conference (INC) with subsequent events every two years (with an additional event in 2005).
  • 2000: Formed a temporary collaboration (Centre for Communications, Networks and Information Systems - CCNIS) with the Signal Processing and Multimedia Communications and the CDMA Mobile Communication Networks Research groups for the RAE submission in 2001
  • 2004: Launch of the NRG Network with the establishment of our first node - University of Applied Sciences, Darmstadt (see CSCAN Network)

  • 2007: Group renamed to incorporate the security theme of our research (Information Security and Network Research Group - ISNRG)
  • 2007: Centre for Applied Internet Research (CAIR) at Glyndwr University joined the ISNRG Network as an adjunct node
  • 2007: Founding of the Human Aspects of Information Security & Assurance symposium with subsequent events annually.
  • 2008: Group renamed as the Centre for Information Security and Network Research (CISNR)
  • 2009: Centre combined with the Fixed and Mobile Communications Research Group to create the Centre for Security, Communications and Network Research (CSCAN)
  • 2010: Furtwangen University of Applied Sciences joined the CSCAN Network.

Working with academia, the public sector and commercial organisations

The Centre for Security, Communications and Network Research (CSCAN) is active in funded research (EU/EPSRC etc.); commercial R&D and development projects as well as undertaking Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) schemes. CSCAN staff can provide commercial consultation services through the University's Enterprise department which manages commercial activities.

MPhil/PhD opportunities

We welcome enquiries from potential students to undertake MPhil/PhD level research under the supervision of CSCAN staff (we offer both full and part-time opportunities). Please be advised that funded PhD opportunities are rare, and, when available, will be listed on our jobs page - please do not contact us with enquiries regarding funding as we are unable to provide any assistance in this matter.

If you have secured funding and would like to discuss research ideas, please visit our staff pages to identify relevant potential supervisors.

Once you have an outline research idea, you will need to complete the university application form and submit this together with references, degree certificates and the appropriate evidence of English Language competence (usually IELTS/TOEFL certificates) if appropriate. Our Doctoral College will help you with the application process and will provide appropriate support to secure any necessary visas.

A full application will require the following documentation:

  • Application form (can be obtained via our Doctoral College)
  • CV
  • Previous highest qualification and transcripts
  • IELTS certificate or UKBA approved English language qualification (for International applicants)
  • Copy of the photo page of your passport
  • Brief research proposal
  • Confirmation of funding
  • 2 x academic references.

Internships/placements/visiting academics

Our centre has hosted visitors from a range of institutions from across the world.

Due to limited space, we consider each application on merit and can accommodate a maximum of two to three visitors at a time. 

Please visit our jobs page to identify relevant potential staff and contact them directly with details of the proposed activity (including dates). 

We regret that we are unable to offer any paid internship opportunities.


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