Mar 6, 2008

I have a dream...

Surrounded by a group of Bulgarian PhD students last week, I began to wonder what could help the quality of research and academia in Bulgaria. Moreover, I began to wonder what can I do to improve the academic environment there.

Realistically speaking there's quite a lot of research to be done within the computer security field, so establishing a research team in that area is not impossible. This said, there are 3 major factors to consider while planning this out:
  • Vision. The first few ideas in this area involve building (if possible) on the established research trends in the virus labs at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences. This will primarily involve establishing mechanisms for better monitoring, analyzing, and preventing outbreaks of malware. Second, invest time into researching and developing methodologies and tools that will aid the security community in various aspects of the software development life cycle. Lastly, the works of this research group should be used for raising the security awareness throughout the Balkan region.

  • Human Resources. In a talk a few years ago, Larry Page from Google said that the most interesting research happens where people are eager to learn new things. As I was once an undergrad doing research work, I really believe that any such research should involve any student (grad or undergrad) eager to learn. Given the right motivation, I really think that student will excel in this area.

  • Funding. In my personal opinion, the best way to keep any such group moving forward is to use independent funding channels such as grants or corporate sponsors. At this point I'm under the opinion, that for the sake of science itself, it is better that funding is as independent as possible from any of the already established institutions.

Of course, this is just a dream that I have. :)

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