Professor Jessie Kennedy

Director of IIDI

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Prof. Jessie Kennedy has been with Edinburgh Napier University since 1986, where she has held the post of professor since 2000 and is currently Director of the Institute for Informatics and Digital Innovation. She has published widely with over 100 peer reviewed publications, has had over £1 million in research funding, 12 PhD students complete, has been programme chair, committee member and organiser of many international conferences and acts as reviewer for many national computer science funding bodies. She was Keynote speaker at VIZBI in 2012 and IV2012 and is General Chair for BioVis 2013 and 2013. She has been a Member of EPSRC Peer Review College since 1996 and is a Fellow of the British Computer Society.

Her research interests are in information visualisation and data modelling. Her early work on data modelling and interfaces to databases led to an EPSRC grant in 1996 to investigate Systematic Generic Support for User Interfaces to Databases
in collaboration with Glasgow and Manchester Universities. This was followed by an EPSRC/BBSRC bioinformatics grant to investigate: A Novel Database System for Classifying Biodiversity  in conjunction with the Royal Botanic Gardens Edinburgh(RBGE). Her work on information visualisation (IV) in parallel with this resulted in research in and a tool for Visualising Multiple Overlapping Classification Hierarchies. A follow-on grant: Capturing and Relating Character Concept Definitions in Plant Taxonomy with the RBGE was awarded in 2001. Work on taxonomic data models and databases continued with support from the National Science Foundation, USA where Prof. Kennedy was a principal investigator on a large 5 year cyber-infrastructure project - SEEK (Scientific Environment for Ecological Knowledge) in collaboration with 8 USA institutions. This work led to her grant on the project “TaxVis: Visualisation Tools for Integrating Large Alternative Linnaean Taxonomies”, funded by EPSRC in 2006 and in working with the Global Biodiversity Information Facility which adopted her data standard in their global cyber infrastructure and use of the visualisation tools for understanding of multiple classifications. Her work in biological data visualisation continued with a BBSRC grant VIPER, to visualise and clean errors in pedigree genotype data in collaboration with the Roslin Institute and she is currently working on a BBSRC grant to develop web based visualisation tools for taxonomy - VeSpeR. Prof Kennedy has also worked in other visualisation areas and was co-investigator on an EU funded project OPaL, investigating techniques for measuring and capturing trust in on-line communities forming partnerships and allowing users to visually explore the information when creating partnerships. She is active in exploitation of her research outcomes and in 2007, she led a Proof of Concept project “MATSE: Information Visualisation of Microarray Time-course Data”, to deliver high quality interactive visualisation software for the analysis of microarray time-course data.
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Areas of Expertise link icon

  • Data Intensive Systems
    Data and information are key assets for modern business. Large complex and incomplete datasets are common in industry. Exploiting that data successfully can give a major competitive advantage while, if it is not managed successfully, its value is often lost.
  • Information Visualisation
    Information visualisation is the use of enhanced Graphical User Interfaces (GUIs) to communicate and interact with complex data sets such as social networks, multiattribute tables, and financial data. Pages of text and numbers are not the most effective way to communicate or understand information.
  • Software Systems
    The institute's expertise in software engineering encompasses the entire development lifecycle, and we focus on the approaches and tools to improve the engineering process of both emerging and widely used software systems. Increasing the productivity and improving the quality of software remains a...
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+44 (0)131 455 2772

Room C53
Merchiston Campus
10 Colinton Road
EH10 5DT

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    Recent Projects

    Biology is a visually grounded scientific discipline-from the way data is collected and analysed to the manner in which the results are communicated to others. Traditionally pictures in scientific publications were hand-drawn; however they are now almost exclusively computer-generated.
    To analyse in game communications to predict engagement of players.
    To develop an interactive and highly visual platform for representing, searching and filtering complex trust framework and associated rules and policies.
    Develop a prototype Budget visualization tool for the Scottish Government. Specifically they wish to improve their budget briefing/analysis: · to make the budget clearer/more visual · to make the budget analysis suitable for reading on PCs, tablets and mobile devices · to develop opportunities for...
    Scottish Woodlands KTP
    Scottish Woodlands Ltd is Scotland's leading independent full-service forest management company. It is also the second largest operator in the UK, with a network of 17 offices operating throughout Scotland, England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
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    PhD Project Involvement

    Yann Rimbaud (PhD 2014-)
    Intelligent and adaptive learnign in multilingual contexts.
    Solomon Uwagbole (PhD 2011-)
    Digital immunisation through network packets payload analysis and patterns-matching within a security boundary. The immune approach in anomaly detection enables detecting known and unknown intrusive activities in packets payload. Cloud computing has extended security boundaries from the traditional security...
    Dalal Zahran (PhD 2010-)
    Web engineering for the evaluation of large computer web systems: methodologies in web metrics.
    Ingi Helgason (PhD 2008-)
    Complex Pleasures: Interactions in new-media art as a resource for the design of the user experience. This research will investigate the nature of interactions between people and experience-oriented technologies such as new-media artworks. The purpose of this research is to inform the design of...
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    Alan Melville (MPhil 2007-)
    An investigation into visual graph comparison. While much work has been done in the area of visualization for analysis of graphs, relatively little research exists into how best to use visualization for comparing graphs.
    Hannah Rudman (PhD 2011-)
    Getting IT: action learning as an approach for the successful digital development of the cultural sector.
    Natalie Kerracher (PhD 2010-)
    Visualising Large Dynamic Graphs.
    Rania Molla (PhD 2009-)
    Enhanced mobile authentication of users within an e-commerce infrastructure.
    Paul Shaw (PhD 2008-)
    Using a mathematical graph framework for visualization of inheritance patterns in plant pedigrees.
    See all PhD projects

    Recent Publications

    Archambault, D., Abello, J., Kennedy, J., Kobourov, S., Ma, K., Miksch, S., Muelder, C., Telea, Alexandru C. (2014). Temporal Multivariate Networks. In: Kerren, A., Purchase, H., Ward, M. (Eds.) Multivariate Network Visualization, LNCS 8380, () ( ed.). (pp. 151-175). : . Springer-Verlag.

    Graham, M., Kennedy, J. (2014). Vesper: Visualising Species Archives. Ecological Informatics, , (), .

    Kerracher, N., Kennedy, J., Chalmers, K. (2014). The Design Space of Temporal Graph Visualisation. In: Elmqvist, N., Hlawitschka, M., Kennedy, J. (Eds.) Proceedings of the 18th Eurographics Conference on Visualization (EuroVis '14), Short Papers Track, () ( ed.). (pp. ). Swansea: . Eurographics Assocation.

    Shaw, P., Graham, M., Kennedy, J., Milne, I., Marshall, D. (2014). Helium: Visualization of Large Scale Plant Pedigrees. BMC Bioinformatics, 15, (), 259.

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