ICFEM 2018

The 20 th International Conference on Formal Engineering Methods

12-16 November 2018 - Gold Coast, Australia

Welcome to the website of the 20 th International Conference on Formal Engineering Methods (ICFEM 2018)

Since 1997, ICFEM provides a forum for both researchers and practitioners who are interested in developing practical formal methods for software engineering or applying existing formal techniques to improve software development process in practice systems.

Formal methods for the development of computer systems have been extensively researched and studied. We now have good theoretical understandings of how to describe what programs do, how they do it, and why they work. A range of semantic theories, specification languages, design techniques, verification methods, and supporting tools have been developed and applied to the construction of programs of moderate size that are used in critical applications. The remaining challenge now is how to deal with problems in developing and maintaining large scale and complex computer systems.

The goal of this conference is to bring together industrial, academic, and government experts, from a variety of user domains and software disciplines, to help advance the state of the art. Researchers, practitioners, tool developers and users, and technology transfer experts are all welcome. We are interested in work that has been incorporated into real production systems, and in theoretical work that promises to bring practical, tangible engineering benefits.

We look forward to your contribution and participation.



To be announced.

Workshops and Tutorials

More to be announced.

Keynote Speakers

Sir Tony Hoare (C. A. R. Hoare) is a British computer scientist. He developed the sorting algorithm quicksort in 19591960. He also developed Hoare logic for verifying program correctness in 1969, and the formal language communicating sequential processes (CSP) to specify the interactions of concurrent processes in 1985. He received the Turing Prize and the Kyoto Prize for his fundamental contributions to the definition and design of programming languages in 1980 and 2000 respectively. Tony Hoare became a professor at Oxford University in 1977 where he is now an Emeritus Professor. Hoare was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society as well as a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering. A recent personal research goal has been the unification of a diverse range of theories applying to different programming languages, paradigms, and implementation technologies. Tony has been and continue to be an inspiration to many researchers.

Title: Algebra, Logic, Geometry at the Foundation of Computer Science

Abstract: I look forward to the day when a Unified Theory of Programming will be generally taught throughout a Degree Course in Computing. It will tell students a simple method for planning, developing and testing their practical exercises and assignments. The initial level of mathematical presentation of the Theory is that of High School lessons in Algebra, Logic and Geometry. The Theory will be put to immediate practical use by a Software Development Environment for students, providing guidance and immediate checking for the programs which they write.

I start with a review of Boolean Algebra, illustrated by familiar laws and theorems for disjunction. A deductive logic with implication and proof rules is derived from the algebra in the standard way. The algebra is extended by operators for sequential and concurrent composition. https://essaydefinition.com share a unit, they are associative and distribute through disjunction. An Interchange axiom formalises a basic principle of concurrency, in that it shows how an arbitrarily concurrent program can be executed directly by interleaving on a single sequential computer, without the overhead of interpretation. Proof rules are derived for a modal logic of time and space. Its rules are definitionally equivalent to two historic logics due to Hoare and Milner, which are now used widely for mechanical reasoning about correctness of programs and of implementations of programming languages. These two rival theories have at last been unified.

The lecture ends with an account of the applications of algebra to programs, and a discussion of its limitations as the foundation of Computer Science.

David Basin is a full professor of Computer Science at ETH Zurich. He received his Ph.D. in Computer Science from Cornell University in 1989 and his Habilitation in Computer Science from the University of Saarbrucken in 1996. From 1997–2002 he held the chair of Software Engineering at the University of Freiburg in Germany. His research areas are Information Security and Software Engineering. He is the founding director of the ZISC, the Zurich Information Security Center, which he led from 2003-2011. He is Editor-in-Chief of the ACM Transactions on Privacy and Security and of Springer-Verlag’s book series on Information Security and Cryptography. He serves on various management and scientific advisory boards, co-founded three security companies, and has consulted extensively for IT companies and government organizations.

Title: Security Protocols: Model Checking Standards

Abstract: The design of security protocols is typically approached more as an art than a science, and often with disastrous consequences. But this need not be so! I have been working for ca. 20 years on foundations, methods, and tools, both for developing protocols that are correct by construction and for the post-hoc verification of existing designs. In this talk I will introduce my work in this area and describe my experience analyzing, improving, and contributing to different industry standards, both existing and upcoming.

Professor Ian Hayes is a professor of computer science at the University of Queensland. His research interests are in formal methods for software development, in particular, for concurrent and real-time systems, and for language-based software security. His most recent concurrency research has been on the development of a concurrent program algebra to support reasoning about concurrency using the rely/guarantee approach and incorporating fairness and progress assumptions. His recent research in language-based security has focussed on providing secure access to resources via capabilities.

Title: Progress towards an algebra for concurrent programs

Abstract: Our original goal was to develop a refinement calculus for shared-memory concurrent programs that would support Jones-style rely/guarantee developments. Our semantics was based on Aczel traces, which explicitly include environment steps as well as program steps, and were originally proposed as a basis for showing the rely/guarantee rules of Jones are sound. Where we have ended up is with a hierarchy of algebraic theories that provide a foundation for concurrent program refinement, which allows us to prove Jones-style rely/guarantee laws, as well as new laws. In particular, we are able to encode fairness in a novel way that allows fair execution of a single process to be treated in isolation, rather than fairness being encoded intrinsically in a fair parallel operator. We also have a new way of looking at progress assumptions for blocking operations. Our algebraic theory is based on a lattice of commands that includes a sub-lattice of test commands (similar to Kozen’s Kleene Algebra with Tests) and a sub-algebra of atomic step commands (similar to Milner’s SCCS) but with a richer structure that supports Aczel’s program and environment steps as atomic step commands. The latter allows us to directly encode rely and guarantee commands to represent rely/guarantee specifications, and to encode fair execution of a command.

Professor Jifeng He, academician of Chinese Academy of Sciences, now serves as the Dean of School of Computer Science and Software Engineering at East China Normal University. He had been employed by Oxford University as a senior research fellow 1983-1998 and won Queen’s Awards in 1989 and 1993 respectively. He has published over 180 papers in international conferences and journals. He is in the editorial board of Formal Aspects of Computing journal. He was awarded Honorary Doctor Degree of York University in 2011. In 2011, he was the recipient of the first class prize of the Chinese Ministry of Education (Universities) Natural Science Award. In 2013, he was the recipient of Shanghai Hero of Science and Technology Award. HE Jifeng was appointed as the Chief Scientist for the “Trusted Software Fundamental Research” as a major research plan launched by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC). He was also appointed as the Chief Scientist for the “Theory and Practice on Coordination and Survivability for Massive Amount of Information” project as the National Basic Research Program (“973” Program) founded by the Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST). In 2011, he was appointed as the Chief Scientist for the “Internet of Things” project as China Technology Research Development Plan (“863” Program) founded by MOST. During 1995-1998, Prof. HE devoted to the research of the unifying theory of programming, and investigated the links between a diversity of presentation for the programming languages. A book “Unifying theories of programming” was published in 1998 with Tony Hoare. Currently he is working on the mathematical models for Cyber Physical Systems and new roadmap for unifying theories of programming.