Experts launch into cyber security ecosystem research

A collaborative research team, including research experts in cyber security from Aston University, will work to support its national cyber security strategy by mapping blind spots in the UK’s regional cyber security ecosystems.

The research team includes the Cyber Security Innovation (CSI) Centre at Aston University, and EY Cyber Security Consulting. The collaboration on this £180,000 project for the Department for Digital, Culture, Media, and Sport (DCMS) aims to research and map the UK cyber security ecosystem.

What will be considered to make this project successful?

The project will consider the current environment, conditions and interventions that exist to influence or impact companies providing cyber security products, services, or solutions to support and contribute to the development and growth of cyber security businesses in the UK.

Additionally, scientists also intend for this research to provide the DCMS with robust evidence of a region-by-region picture of where public, private, academic and industry support mechanisms that are in place, and to identify service and geographical gaps in their provision.

Why are scientists strengthening regional cyber security ecosystems now?

The launch of this project follows the CSI Centre launching the UK government’s National Cyber Strategy 2022 in Birmingham at a special event last December, for which Aston University professor of cybersecurity management, Vladlena Benson, was an instrumental member of the organising committee.

The current project will enable the strategy implementation to support the UK government’s ambition to grow innovation and academic research in cyber security ecosystems.

Dr Anitha Chinnaswamy, lecturer in cyber security management at the CSI Centre at Aston Business School, concluded: “From the datasets collected that includes different cyber security businesses, incubators, accelerators, clusters, academic centres of excellence and other different mechanisms from across the UK, analysis will be conducted to provide a region-by-region basis of practices involved.

“The mapping of the cyber security landscape will also enable the enhancement of skills and diversity across the cyber security sector. The diversity in cyber security market lags other digital sectors, with the cyber workforce consisting of only 15% females, 16% ethnic minority backgrounds and 9% neurodivergent.

“The results of this project will be an important contribution for the government to foster the growth of a sustainable, innovative, and internationally competitive cyber and information security sector.”

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