Human and robot hands meeting

LIRA

Lancaster Intelligent, Robotic and Autonomous Systems Centre

The role of intelligent, autonomous and robotic systems is coming to the fore of modern industry and technology, with deep-learning, driverless cars, Earth observation, drone delivery, and more.

Our Mission

LIRA is a focal point for cutting-edge research into intelligent, autonomous and robotic systems bringing together world-leading expertise across Lancaster University aiming to advance this technology and its applications to the economy, society and the environment.

About

Lancaster Intelligent, Robotic and Autonomous systems (LIRA) Research Centre was established in 2018 as the focal point for research excellence and expertise in the area of intelligent, robotic and autonomous systems. LIRA is multi-disciplinary collaborative forum by design – it brings together a diverse community of academics, researchers and students from all Faculties of the University and more than a dozen departments.

LIRA is a leader in AI and Machine Learning research and is a part of wider European networks of excellence, namely:

  • ELLIS (European Laboratory for Learning and Intelligent Systems) – LIRA has ELLIS Fellows and PhD students, and is taking part in the exchange of ELLIS scholars, members and postdoctoral researchers.
  • LIRA is a partner of ELSA – a €10M European AI Centre of Excellence. ELSA stands for European Lighthouse on Secure and Safe AI and brings together researchers from 26 top research institutions and companies in Europe to pool their expertise in the field of AI and machine learning. It rests on three pillars: selected research programs, local research units, and a PhD and postdoc program and includes 6 work packages (WP), 3 of them technological and 3 Grand Challenges. LIRA leads one of the Grand challenges (Human-in-the-loop decision making)and one of the technological WPs (Human agency, oversight and secure AI).
  • LIRA is a partner of the 12M€ Horizon Europe project TAILOR and a member of the CLAIRE Network.
  • LIRA is also an associate partner of ELISE – a €12M project funded by EC (ICT-48 call "Towards a vibrant European network of AI excellence centres").

LIRA has collaborative projects with organisations such as the European Space Agency, Phi Lab (the project "Towards explainable AI4EO: a new frontier to gain trust into the AI", ESA Contract 4000133854/21/NL/CBi), Ford, etc.

  • Associate Partner of ELISE

    ELISE is a 12M€ project funded by EC to create a network of artificial intelligence research hubs. Based on the highest level research, it spreads its knowledge and methods in academia, industry and society

  • Member of the TAILOR Network

    TAILOR is a 12M€ project which aims to build the capacity of providing the scientific foundations for Trustworthy AI in Europe by developing a network of research excellence centres leveraging and combining learning, optimisation and reasoning

  • Co-Directing ELLIS Programme on HCML

    ELLIS mission is to create a diverse European network that promotes research excellence and advances breakthroughs in AI, as well as a pan-European PhD program to educate the next generation of AI researchers

  • Member of CLAIRE Research Network

    CLAIRE is a Confederation of AI research Labs in Europe, which aims to strengthen European excellence in AI research and innovation

Research

Research within LIRA is spread across eight different research themes.

People

LIRA is comprised of leading academics from across Lancaster University, from the Engineering Department, School of Computing and Communications, Lancaster Environment Centre, the Faculty of Health and Medicine, the Management School and more. Many of them are Fellows of the IEEE, ACM or IET. Also contributing to the group are members of small-medium sized enterprises that are based at Lancaster University.

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