Vertically Integrated Projects (VIP) Information for Students

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Are you interested in applying what you've learnt in the classroom to original research and development projects?


Would you like to be a part of a multi-disciplinary team working with undergraduate and postgraduate students from all years and staff from across the University?


Do you want to learn new knowledge and skills that will make you stand out from the crowd?


If so VIP@Strath would like to hear from you!


University of Strathclyde is running a programme of classes called Vertically Integrated Projects – VIP@Strath.

These projects give students from first year through to postgraduate level the opportunity to work with staff in multi-disciplinary teams on cutting-edge research and development projects.

By taking part in a VIP project you will be able to:

  • Learn and practice many different professional skills.
  • Make substantial technical contributions to a project.
  • Experience many different roles on a large design team.
  • Interact and receive support from more senior students and, in some instances, receive mentoring from PhD students involved in the project.
  • Contribute to the completion of large-scale design projects that are of significant benefit to the research programmes of staff members.

If you would like to join the VIP Team please contact the relevant academic lead.  This year's projects include:



This VIP team aims to better understand polarized growth (vasculature, nervous system, plant roots, filamentous microorganisms) through genetic manipulation of a model system based on a filamentous antibiotic producing bacterium combined with advanced image processing methods and mathematical models.
Open to students from Electronic & Electrical Engineering; Biology; and Mathematics & Statistics. 

VIP Poster 2014-15v01

VIP Info session 2014-15v01.pdf  


This VIP team aims to select, prepare, analyse and preserve digital texts using techniques and technologies drawn from Digital Humanities, Linguistics, Statistics, Information Science.
Open to students from Humanities; English; Computer Science; and Mathematics & Statistics.
VIP TextLab Flyer          


Contact: Jonathan Levie

Enterprise VIP 1: Building Strathclyde’s Entrepreneurial Ecosystem

In this VIP, in Semester 1 you will research how the world’s best universities encourage entrepreneurial behaviour in their students, staff and alumni and compare this to the University of Strathclyde’s entrepreneurial ecosystem. We may be THE UK Entrepreneurial University of the Year but we can always do better! In Semester 2 you will move from researching to doing. Your challenge will be pilot one new activity of your choice, with help from Strathclyde Entrepreneurial Network’s Enterprise Team and the Hunter Centre for Entrepreneurship. If it is successful, it could become a permanent feature of the University’s entrepreneurial ecosystem, and you will have truly left your mark on the university. This VIP is open to all students, including third year business students for credit under the MDP.

Enterprise VIP 2: VIP Commercialisation Consultant

In this VIP, which is open to third year business students for credit under the MDP, you will be “embedded” in a research VIP, and work with the existing team of students and researchers to develop a commercialisation plan for the technology the VIP is developing. Research VIPs vary from understanding plant growth to sustainable development to text analytics to robotics. They are cutting edge, often interdisciplinary projects and your role will be to figure out how they can be moved from the lab to the commercial world for the benefit of mankind. Are you up for this challenge?

Enterprise VIP 3: Sustaining a Student Enterprise Society at Strathclyde

This VIP is open to all students, including third year business students for credit under the MDP. The University of Strathclyde may be the Entrepreneurial University of the Year, but unlike many great universities, it does not have a thriving student enterprise society. This VIP is designed to provide a sustainable way of growing a world class student enterprise society that is run by students for students. In Semester 1, you will research thriving student enterprise societies in great universities around the world, and plan a comprehensive programme of activities for Semester 2 that complements activities run by the Scottish Institute for Enterprise and the Strathclyde Entrepreneurial Network. In Semester 2, you will implement the programme and recruit and guide a new student team to plan for Semester 1 activities in the next academic year.


Contact: Scott Strachan 

This VIP aims to design and develop sustainable renewable energy systems that can provide affordable electricity supply to some of the poorest communities in the world, harnessing the engineering and economic expertise of UoS staff and students to innovate in the areas of power system design, ICT technology and business management. The EfD VIP evolved from previous success of EEE staff/student initiatives that have partnered with rural communities in The Gambia, Malawi and India and undertaken expeditions to install solar PV systems at schools and health posts.  Previous VIP project work has provided a strong knowledge base from which a new 3 year project cycle will commence this year.  The work will be practical, have links and access to current developing country research programmes, and will be supervised by staff with active interests and extensive experience in this field.

Open to students from EEE, EME, CES, DMEM, Business, Computer Science, Economics.

VIP Efd 2015-16


WASH - Water and Sanitation Hygiene 
Contact: Robert Kalin

This VIP team aims to look at Water and Sanitation Hygiene issues in Sub-Saharan Africa (including Malawi).


ROVER: RObotic Vehicles for Education and Research:
Contact: Dr Mark Post

This VIP team aims to design, build and develop completely autonomous, robotic vehicles to improve sensing capabilities of our environment and the smart cities of the future. The project will educate and train students in any aspect of robotic systems relevant to their interests and discipline. 

The long term goal will see the development of, marketable, environmentally friendly land, sea and air vehicles with the capability to measure and image valuable data such as CO2 levels in the atmosphere and sub-sea oil leaks. Open to students from all engineering disciplines, the Business school, Computer & Information Sciences, Physics and Mathematics & Statistics. 


Contact: Cristian Suau

MOBILELAND(c) is a Scottish Eco-design VIP Project led by Dr Cristian Suau together with the international collaboration of Glasgow City Council Stalled Spaces Project, Glasgow Project Office, ECOFABRICA, designers, landscape architects and students from Strathclyde University. The proposal is versatile D.I.Y. landscaping scheme, which has the potential to enhance public space and offer community groups, schools and those without gardens their very own portion of land. Its aim is to produce pieces of radical landscape architecture based on the theme of reduce, re-use and recycle ‘on wheels’. MOBILEAND Glasgow VIP will offer diverse ways of knowledge exchange between students, involved professionals and the local community through experiential learning, story telling and performance, future problem solving and proactive learning outside the classroom. To find out more please and get involved visit or contact us at


Contact: Marion Sheridan

The project aims to use performance as a medium to widen access, in this modern society, to Science / Engineering and where possible to encourage more female representation in these fields.  Public engagement is at the core of the project with Science and Engineering students promoting their areas of study in an accessible and user-friendly setting; Humanities students adapting and developing Science / Engineering ideas into modes of performance.

In recent years, innovative and unusual approaches to disseminating scientific knowledge and information have been used to reach the general public such as professors of science who encourage audiences to open their minds to science through the medium of Stand-Up Comedy routines. Since 1989, as part of the Edinburgh International Science Festival, an initiative called ‘Generation Science’ has toured schools with workshops and presentations that are drama based.

Students on this project work together throughout the creative process with the performance outcome taking whatever form suits the requirements of the concept or problem identified by the Science / Engineering students. The subject under investigation is determined by the students who devise a piece of theatre specifically for their chosen target audience.

The project has two main research aims: 1) to consider the value gained by students working in a multidisciplinary environment and 2) to gather information on whether the performance encouraged female pupils to consider choosing, for their future study, Science / Engineering courses.


Contact: Robert Collins

“Innovative science, engineering and technology are as fundamental to Scotland’s future economic prosperity as they have been to its economic development over the past two centuries, driving growth in the fast-changing world of the 21st century.”

(Scottish Science & Engineering Advisory Group, 2012)

The Vertically Integrated Project: STEM Education & Public Engagement resonates with a fostering of both interdisciplinary approach to learning and the development of enhanced communities of inquiry. Within the project students will be supported in creating and sustaining STEM Education Clinics in schools and Knowledge Exchange events within related local communities in Scotland. In so doing, the project seeks not only to develop students own STEM domain knowledge, but to also promote the development of their intra –professional and inter-personal skills sets, both widely considered as a much valued commodity in the modern employment environment. Such collaborative effort between students from disparate academic disciplines and backgrounds will also aim to address fundamental issues such as wider community access to, and gender equality within, STEM literacy through using these local schools STEM Clinics as satellite hubs for learning. Issues relating to the development of STEM literacy at student, pupil and community levels will subsequently form the basis for an ongoing and sustainable real-world research programme. Crucially, in keeping with findings from earlier pilot phases of the project already, it is hoped that this approach will not only resonate strongly with the ethos of supporting even greater student agency in their own learning at Strathclyde, but also foster a truly authentic and inspiring learning experience for all participants.