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Information about SAVE-IT

SAVE-IT is an industrial graduate school with a research focus upon real-time- and safety-critical systems, and with a special focus upon component-based development of such systems (see research below). SAVE-IT is funded by the KK-foundation (KKS) and participating companies, and will be active between 2004 and 2010. SAVE-IT is open for PhD students at Swedish universities and has its organizational location at Mälardalen Real-Time research Center (MRTC) at Mälardalen University in Västerås, Sweden.

PhD students accepted to SAVE-IT are offered financial support, and are allowed to freely participate in a collection of tailor-made graduate courses and network activities. Currently 21 PhD students are accepted to SAVE-IT and two more students are associated to SAVE-IT.

For more details about SAVE-IT, please see SAVE-IT presentation (pdf).
Please do not hesitate to contact SAVE-IT for more details concerning SAVE-IT.


SAVE-IT has a research focus upon real-time- and safety-critical systems, and with a special focus upon component-based software development of such systems.

Real-time systems are computer systems that must react within precise time constraints to events in their environment. The correct behaviour of a real-time system is not only dependant on the result of a computation but also on the time at which the result is produced.

Safety critical systems are computer systems where the cost, both in money and in human lifes, can be significant if something goes wrong. Examples including such systems are cars, airplanes and nuclear power plants. Due to the stringent demands for safety, the software in safety-critical systems is often very complex and costly to develop. Many safety-critical systems are also real-time systems.

The basic idea of component-based software development is to build software from general software components. Component-based development is a strong trend within the software technology area and is motivated by the need to increase reusability and quality, and to decrease development time.

SAVE-IT was initially a closely connected to the SSF-supported SAVE research program which focussed upon methods for "Component based design of safety critical vehicular systems".

School activities

The main activity of SAVE-IT is to organize research studies for PhD students employed at participating companies. The students achieve expert competence in component-based software development for real-time and safety-critical systems with a strong industrial focus. The school also works for an increased cooperation and exchange between participating companies and universities.

The school activities organized by SAVE-IT are divided into three complementary parts:

  • Research activities - performed as projects and in close cooperation with participating companies and universities. For more information, see below.
  • Network activities - including company visits, workshops, international visits, and regular meetings between the industry and academia. For more information see the activities page.
  • Graduate research courses - a tailor-made collection of both methodological and technical courses with a strong industrial focus. For more information see the courses page.
The school activities prepare the industrial PhD students for their future profession as a technical expert, researcher and/or developer of advanced technical systems. The activities also enable an increased cooperation and exchange between the participating companies and universities.

Company participation and funding details

SAVE-IT is funded by KKS and the participating companies. A SAVE-IT PhD student must be employed at a company. The company participates in SAVE-IT by providing salary to the PhD student and by letting other personnel, such as industrial supervisors and mentors, actively participate in SAVE-IT. A part of the funding from KKS is strictly allocated for SAVE-IT school activities and the graduate education of the PhD student (network activities, courses, international visits, research conferences).

A part of the funding from KKS can be used more freely within the research project, e.g., as direct support for company salary or increased supervisor capacity. The total support per full year PhD student from KKS is 400 kkr/year. Participating companies are expected to contribute with funding that equals or exceeds the KKS funding. The company funding is normally spent on the salary for the industrial PhD student.

The following are recommended financial figures on the KKS funding:

  • Direct support for covering costs at the company: 100 kkr/year per full year PhD student.
  • Support for academic supervision: 150 kkr/year per full year PhD student.
  • Support for mobility: 50 kkr/year per full year PhD student.
  • Support for courses and network activities: 30 kkr/year per full year PhD student.
  • Other support, overhead and taxes: 70 kkr/year per full year PhD student.
Active company participation is of vital importance for the success of SAVE-IT. The company participation is made in terms of supervision, planning discussions and regular project meetings. The actual participation is regulated by contracts between the company, the participating university and the SAVE-IT organizational site. See SAVE-IT PhD student information for details on company supervision and industrial mentors.

Graduate education

A SAVE-IT PhD student must formally be registered as a PhD student at a department of a university. Thereby the PhD studies follow the rules specified by Högskoleförordningen and the local rules of the university. For more details on graduate education rules see the student info web page.

The SAVE-IT graduate education consists of research (performed in a project), network activities and courses. A SAVE-IT student is expected to within 2.5 years produce a Lic thesis and within 5 years produce a PhD thesis. This indirectly means that the PhD student, during this period, might have a limited engagement in the company activities.

The research work should have a clear connection to the the research focus of SAVE-IT and of the activities of the participating company. The company is expected to actively participate in the project formulation and in the realization of the project (see above).

The PhD thesis work can be performed both at the participating company and at the university. The PhD thesis subject should have a clear connection to the research focus of SAVE-IT.

Associated students

An associated student is allowed to participate in the SAVE-IT courses and network activities but gets no direct funding.

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