• Published on 11 Jul 2014
  • External News

Shaping the future: the embedded and cyber-physical systems engineer of tomorrow

What skills and capabilities are required by the engineers of tomorrow? Furthermore, how should the corresponding educational programs be formed in order to provide experts ready to engineer the Cyber-Physical Systems that will greatly impact our future society?

Embedded systems education is facing several challenges as every-“thing” becomes connected, and as technology development accelerates.

Distinguishing "embedded" from "IT" used to be simple. With the increased levels of networks and connections between different systems - and the use of software-intensive systems in all sorts of new applications including mass-market products - our traditional separation into various disciplines and domains is no longer adequate. Moreover, system complexity increases, requiring process and organizational change. This provides an increased need for engineers with system knowledge, which goes beyond the traditional disciplines.

This development raises the question whether our current programs are sufficient. Do we need to develop new "multidisciplinary" programs, or should we aim for a new CPS discipline and programs? How long should engineering educations be? Should more emphasis be placed on lifelong learning – for example in terms of continued training for practicing engineers?

These topics are the focal points of a number of ongoing activities and events to which we would like to draw your attention.

-          October 16, the 10th International workshop on Embedded and Cyber-Physical Systems Education (WESE) takes place at the Embedded systems week (

-          As part of EIT ICT Labs, a summerschool series on CPS has been developed (the 2nd instance takes place this year). As a smaller activity, a first attempt to develop curriculum guidelines for CPS is taking place (

-          The CyPhERS ("Cyber-Physical European Roadmap and Strategy") project has the main objective to develop a European strategic research and innovation agenda for CPS to ensure Europe's competitiveness in this emerging field ( CyPhERS will be finalizing its agenda during the fall 2014.


We invite you to take place in these activities and there are several ways to do so. Apart from submitting a paper to the WESE workshop (which could include position papers), we also encourage you to provide your opinion on pertinent topics regarding education of embedded and cyber-physical systems engineers.

If you are interested in contributing ideas and feedback to the curriculum activity, then please send an email to - in your email, you may already provide indications to questions like the following:

-          What are core competences in the area of embedded and cyber-physical systems?

-          What are present and future recruitment needs in industry (and academia)?

-          How do you see the needs for continued education, are there specific need for professional training and specialized courses in CPS?

-          How should the balance between depth and breadth be dealt with?

-          What are limitations in existing education, what is missing, what should be removed?

-          How should the long-term development of the subject (CPS) be pursued to improve quality of education and research?

-          Other relevant questions you would like to add!