A Summary of IEEE ComSoc Activities in New Zealand

By Nurul I Sarkar - IEEE Joint NZ North, South and Central ComSoc Chair

Last year (2016) was very productive for us as far as professional activities and community development programs are concerned. Being a ComSoc chapter chair, Associate Professor Nurul I Sarkar had nominated Professor Jalel Ben-Othman (University of Paris 13, France), for an IEEE ComSoc Distinguished Lecturer (DL) tour to NZ. Professor Ben-Othman delivered three public lectures in Auckland, Wellington, and Christchurch on June 7, 8 and 9, respectively. All three lectures went very well as far as professional development of the members of the society and the wider community was concerned. The first DL talk “DoS in VANETs: An Issue or a Fatality?” was given in Auckland (see below for more details). Next Professor Ben-Othman gave a lecture in Wellington on 8 June, organized by Dr. Ramesh Rayudu. The third lecture, delivered at the University of Canterbury, Christchurch on 9 June, was organized by Professor Harsha Sirisena.

IEEE DL-NSRG Workshop AUT’s School of Engineering, Computer and Mathematical Sciences hosted a day-long Network and Security Research Group (NSRG) workshop in conjunction with the IEEE DL program on Tuesday 7 June 2016. Associate Professor Jairo Gutierrez (Deputy Head of School) gave an opening talk and outlined the program for the day. The workshop had three keynote speakers: Professor Jalel Ben-Othman (University of Paris 13, France), Professor Peter Chong (Head of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, AUT), and Dr. María Elena Villapol (AUT). In addition to the keynote session, we had two regular sessions chaired by Dr. Sayan Ray (Manukau Institute of Technology) and Dr. Bobby Yang (AUT), respectively. In addition, we had a series of presentations given by the IEEE DL, invited speakers and research students.

Professor Ben-Othman gave an interesting talk on “DOS in VANETs: An Issue or a fatality?” that was focused on VANET security, availability, and possible solutions to VANET security problems. Some issues and open research problems were identified and discussed. Professor Chong talked about trust-based routing protocols against internal attack for MANETs. The integration of trust-based routing and DSR routing protocols was discussed. Finally, Dr. Villapol focused on modelling aspects of communication protocols using colored Petri Nets (CPN). The tutorial-style presentations helped the audience to understand the technical subjects very well. There was an opportunity for further question/answer after each keynote talk. Among the other seven presenters, Akbar Hossain (research associate) talked about “Rendezvous in Cognitive Radio Ad-hoc Networks.” The remaining six Ph.D. students from NSRG gave mini presentations during the day. Despite of the busy time of year, about 26 people from within and outside AUT attended the keynote session. Having good opportunities for discussion, people enjoyed networking during the lunch break. The event was co-sponsored by IEEE ComSoc and AUT. Organizing chair A/Professor Nurul Sarkar received positive feedback from the participants, indicating that the event was successful.

Invited Speakers We had a number of invited speakers throughout the year. First, Associate Professor Jianwei Huang (Chinese University of Hong Kong) visited AUT and gave an invited talk on Thursday 30 June 2016. The talk on “Crowdsourced Mobile Video Streaming” generated a lot of interest among the participants and we had good discussion after the talk. About 20 people attended the talk (mostly staff and students). This event was jointly supported by AUT and the IEEE NZ North Section. We then had Associate Professor Jinsong Wu (Universidad de Chile) who gave an interesting talk on Friday 5 August 2016. The talk on “Global Green Challenges Meet Information and Communication Technologies as well as Big Data” generated a good discussion after the talk. About 22 people attended the talk. The event was also supported by the IEEE NZ north section and AUT.

A session with Prof Victor Leung.

A Special Session with Professor Leung We had a useful session with AUT visiting scholar Professor Victor Leung (University of British Columbia, Canada). The session began with a welcoming message by Associate Professor Nurul I Sarkar, and each person introduced themselves by giving their names and their research interests. Prof. Leung highlighted his research activities, especially in vehicular networks. He talked about an ongoing project for setting up a vehicular network testbed. The discussion generated a lot of interest among the members of the group to use the testbed and to collaborate on vehicular network security in addition to the core Vehicular networks.

Dr Sudhir Singh Organizes IEEE NZ Wireless Workshop The IEEE NZ ComSoc chapter organized a day-long IEEE NZ Wireless Workshop held at Callaghan Innovation Centre in Gracefield Campus (Lower Hutt, Wellington) on Friday 2 September 2016. This annual event brought together more than 100 engineers, researchers, industrialists and policy makers working in the field of wireless communications and network technologies. The Workshop featured excellent keynote speakers, including Chris Hartshorn (Callaghan Innovation), Hassan Naqvi (Huawei), Amy Oding (Vodafone NZ), and Richard Malley (Aviat Networks) among the most memorable ones. We had a series of presentations by speakers from industry, wireless research center, and academia, with opportunities for informal discussion and networking. The presentations covered various topics and provided a forum for experts in the wireless industry and academia to discuss innovative technologies and research currently undertaken. This event provided an excellent opportunity for professional development and networking for the members of the wider community. Thanks to Dr. Sudhir Singh (Callaghan Innovation) for organizing this successful event.

2016 IEEE NZ Wireless workshop.

Conclusion IEEE joint NZ North, South and Central ComSoc hosted an IEEE DL program, workshops, and seminars that were very effective for the professional development of the members of the wider university community. We had Professor Jalel Ben-Othman (IEEE ComSoc DL) who delivered three public lectures in three main cities of NZ. We also hosted five invited speakers, including Professor Jianwei Huang (Hong Kong), Professor Jinsong Wu (Chile), and Professor Victor Leung (Canada). We had excellent opportunities for discussion and international collaboration. The workshops were effective as far as networking, academy-industry link, and sharing ideas are concerned. Thanks to IEEE ComSoc and AUT for their financial support throughout.