Our Research

News! Our research attained an average score of 3.37 out of 4 in the recent national Research Excellence Framework (REF 2014) assessment, which is higher than the institution-wide average score of every single British university. Almost all of our research was rated "world leading" or "internationally excellent".


Cybermetrics, or Webometrics, is mainly concerned with measuring aspects of the Web: web sites, web pages, parts of web pages, words in web pages, hyperlinks, web search engines. The importance of the web itself as a communication medium and as a host to an increasingly wide array of documents, from journal articles to holiday brochures, needs no introduction. Given this huge and easily accessible source of information there are limitless possibilities for measuring or counting things on a huge scale (e.g., the number of web sites, the number of web pages, the number of blogs) or on a smaller scale (e.g., the number of web sites in Ireland, the number of web pages in the CNN web site, the number of blogs mentioning Barack Obama prior to the 2008 presidential campaign). For more information you should visit the homepage of the Cybermetrics group. The contact point within the Mathematics group is Professor Mike Thelwall. During the London Olympics in 2012 the Cybermetrics group helped to create the Twitter Positivity Lightshow during which the sentiment of the nation was projected onto the London Eye. London Eye Positivity Light Show 2012


Statistical Modelling

Statistical Modelling' describes various techniques that enable us to forecast what might happen  in a given situation if a given set of circumstances occur, or seek to determine what factors caused some observed phenomenon. For example:  if carbon dioxide emissions double, how will this effect climate change; do badgers spread tuberculosis? Recent statistical modelling research by the mathematics group includes  what factors influence the success of research publications, the effect of tree felling on greenhouse gas emission and the effect that spreading slurry on grassland has on river pollution.  More technical research is being carried out into methods for determining whether data is "zero-inflated". The Statistical Modelling Group is led by Dr. Paul Wilson.


Computational Group Theory


Computational Group Theory is the study of groups on computers. Generally, we try to develop and implement algorithms to carry out computations and answer questions about particular groups or families of groups. We usually use a dedicated computer algebra system such as GAP to do this. In the Mathematics group this research is focused on developing and implementing new algorithms for the computation of the Table of Marks of a finite group. The contact point in the mathematics group for this area is Dr. Liam Naughton. The image below is of the Table of Marks of the Symmetric Group on five points displayed in GAP.

Table of marks


Solar Physics

Solar physics is the branch of astrophysics that specialises in the study of the Sun.  Members of the maths group are focused on Helioseismology, the study of acoustic wave propagation within the interior of the Sun, and MHD (magnetohydrodynamics) wave propagation.  Mathematical modelling is a vital part of this research in order to compare and predict observational signatures and understand the many complex mechanisms and processes involved in the interaction of the solar acoustic modes with magnetic elements on the Sun i.e., Sunspots and Plage regions. The contact point for this area of research is Dr. Andrew Gascoyne. (Image: Bright spots and illuminated arcs of solar material hovering in the sun's atmosphere highlight what's known as active regions on the sun, in this image from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, captured on April 20, 2015. These are areas of intense and complex magnetic activity that can sometimes give rise to solar eruptions such as solar flares and coronal mass ejections. Credits: NASA/SDO) Sunspots