Nick Jennings (computer scientist)

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Nick Jennings
Professor N R Jennings.jpg
Jennings in April 2009
Born Nicholas Robert Jennings
December 1966
London, England
Residence Bishop's Waltham[citation needed]
Alma mater
Known for
Spouse(s) Dr Joanne Jennings[citation needed]
Scientific career
Thesis Joint Intentions as a Model of Multi-Agent Cooperation (1992)
Doctoral advisor Abe Mamdani[2][3]
Doctoral students

Nicholas Robert Jennings, CB, FREng,[1] FIEEE, FIET, FBCS, CEng, CITP is the Vice-Provost for Research[5] at Imperial College, where he also holds a Chair in Artificial Intelligence. He was previously the Regius Professor of Computer Science at the University of Southampton and Chief Scientific Adviser to the UK Government on National Security.[6] He is an internationally recognised authority in the areas of artificial intelligence, autonomous systems, agent-based computing and cybersecurity. He has been involved in founding and advising a number of start ups including Aerogility [7], Contact Engine [8], Crossword Cyber Security [9], Mentat [10] and Reliance Cyber Science [11].


Nick was born in London. He grew up in Portland, Dorset, attended Weymouth Grammar School and studied for an undergraduate degree in computer science at the University of Exeter. His PhD was from the Department of Electronic Engineering at Queen Mary, University of London.[2]


His research is in the broad area of artificial intelligence and covers both the science and the engineering of intelligent systems.[12][13][14][15] Specifically, he has undertaken fundamental research on automated bargaining, mechanism design, trust and reputation, coalition formation, human-agent collectives and crowd sourcing. He has also pioneered the application of multi-agent technology; developing some of the first real-world systems—in domains such as business process management, smart energy systems, sensor networks, disaster response, telecommunications, citizen science and eDefence—and generally advocating the area of agent-oriented software engineering. His most recent project, ORCHID,[16] developed the science of Human-Agent Collectives (HACs) in which humans and software agents collaborate in a seamless manner.

In undertaking this research, he has attracted grant income of over £25M (mainly from EPSRC[17]), published more than 600 articles (with some 350 co-authors[15]) and graduated more than 40[citation needed] PhD students (including two winners and one runner-up of the BCS/CPHC Distinguished Dissertation Award.[18] He is recognised as highly cited by ISI Web of Science[19] in both the Engineering and the Computer Science categories, has over 70,000 citations in Google Scholar,[20] and has an h-index of 112.[21]

He was the founding Editor-in-Chief of the International Journal of Autonomous Agents and Multi-Agent Systems and a founding director of the International Foundation for Autonomous Agents and Multi-Agent Systems.[22] He has also led teams that have won competitions in the areas of: the Iterated Prisoners' Dilemma,[23] RoboCup (2007), Agent Trust and Reputation (the ART competitions in 2006 and 2007), the Lemonade Stand Game (2009 and 2010), competing marketplaces (2007), and technology-mediated social mobilisation and rapid information gathering (the US Department of State's Tag Challenge in 2012).


From 1988 he was at Queen Mary, University of London, where he was a PhD student, research fellow, lecturer, reader and professor. He was appointed to a chair at the age of 31.

In 1999, he moved to the Department of Electronics and Computer Science at the University of Southampton where he was the Deputy Head of Department (Research) (2001-2008), the Associate Dean (Research and Enterprise) for the Faculty of Engineering, Science and Maths (2008-2010), the Head of the Agents, Interaction and Complexity group (2011-2015) and the Head of Department (2015-2016). He was appointed the Regius Professor of Computer Science in 2014.

From 2010 to 2015, he was the UK Government's Chief Scientific Advisor for National Security.

He was appointed Companion of the Order of the Bath (CB) in the 2016 New Year Honours for services to computer science and national security science.[24]

In 2016, he moved to Imperial College to be the Vice-Provost (Research), as well as a Professor of Artificial Intelligence.


Personal life[edit]

He is married to Jo and they have two children. He is a keen sportsman: playing cricket for Bishops Waltham Cricket Club,[25] previously managing a youth football team at Waltham Wolves,[26] and being an avid West Ham United Football Club fan.


  • 1999 (1999): IJCAI Computers and Thought Award
  • 2000 (2000): IEE Achievement Medal for contributions to agent-based computing
  • 2003 (2003): ACM Autonomous Agents Research Award for contributions to the field of agent-based computing[27]
  • 2004 (2004): Team leader of winning agent in the 20th Anniversary Iterated Prisoner's Dilemma Competitions
  • 2007 (2007): Team leader of winner of Trading Agents Competition on Mechanism Design (CAT)
  • 2007 (2007): ARGUS II project winner of The Engineer's Large Company / University Collaboration Award
  • 2008 (2008): Winner of "Best Industrial Demonstrator" award at International Conference on Autonomous Agents and Multi-Systems Conference
  • 2009 (2009): Winner of The Engineer Award for Best Aerospace and Defence Project for ALADDIN
  • 2010 (2010): Winner of Best Paper Award at International Conference on Autonomous Agents and Multi-Agent Systems (out of 685 submissions)
  • 2010 (2010): Winner 1st International Competitions on the Lemonade Stand Game
  • 2011 (2011): Winner 2nd International Competitions on the Lemonade Stand Game
  • 2012 (2012): Winner US State Department's TAG challenge on social mobilisation and rapid information gathering


  1. ^ a b c d "List of Fellows". 
  2. ^ a b Jennings, Nicholas (1992). Joint intentions as a model of multi-agent cooperation in complex dynamic environments (PhD thesis). Queen Mary, University of London. 
  3. ^ Dubois, D.; Prade, H. (2012). "Abe Mamdani: A Pioneer of Soft Artificial Intelligence". Combining Experimentation and Theory. Studies in Fuzziness and Soft Computing. 271. p. 49. doi:10.1007/978-3-642-24666-1_4. ISBN 978-3-642-24665-4. 
  4. ^ Nick Jennings at the Mathematics Genealogy Project
  5. ^
  6. ^
  7. ^
  8. ^
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  11. ^
  12. ^ Curriculum Vitae Nick Jennings
  13. ^ Nick Jennings author profile page at the ACM Digital Library Edit this at Wikidata
  14. ^ Jennings, Nicholas R.'s publications indexed by the Scopus bibliographic database, a service provided by Elsevier. (subscription required)
  15. ^ a b Nicholas R. Jennings at DBLP Bibliography Server
  16. ^
  17. ^ Grants awarded to Nick Jennings by the EPSRC
  18. ^ BCS/CPHC Distinguished Dissertation Award
  19. ^ ISI Web of Science
  20. ^ The h Index for Computer Science by Jens Palsbergg
  21. ^
  22. ^ [the 20th Anniversary competitions in 2004 and 2005
  23. ^ "No. 61450". The London Gazette (Supplement). 30 December 2015. p. N3. 
  24. ^
  25. ^
  26. ^ ACM Autonomous Agents Research Award