ERCIM News No.34 - July 1998

European TMR Project System Identification

by Jan van Schuppen

The System Identification project aims at: joint research on selected topics, increased transnational cooperation, joint training of post-doctoral and pre-doctoral researchers, and interaction with industrial, service, and commerce companies, and with governmental laboratories, leading eventually to joint applied research. The research objectives are to produce algorithms and theory for system identification for nonlinear systems, for multi-input/multi-output linear systems, and for control. The project is carried out by the European Research Network System Identification (ERNSI) which consists of nine research teams in seven European countries. It receives support through the EU Training and Mobility for Researchers (TMR) ­ Research Networks. The project started on 1 March 1998 and will run for four years. It provides primarily fellowships for young researchers at the post-doctoral and at the Ph.D. student level.

System identification concerns the construction and evaluation of mathematical models, obtained from data, in the form of dynamical systems. The project is motivated by the need for such models in problems of control, signal processing, prediction or forecasting, simulation, monitoring, and analysis, such as arises in engineering, economics, environmental sciences, and biology. The problems of system identification to be considered are the modeling of phenomena by dynamical systems, the realization problem of transforming one system representation into another, the derivation of system identification algorithms, the performance evaluation of such algorithms, and combined identification and control.

The ERNSI Network was created in 1992 by several research groups, with the aim to stimulate cooperation between the research teams in the field of system identification. ERNSI has held annual workshops since 1992.

Its research teams: are active leaders in the field in Europe; span a broad spectrum of academic disciplines, from mathematics to engineering and econometrics; have experience in training Ph.D. students and post-docs, also from abroad; regularly receive visitors from other countries, and maintain intensive international contacts; and are active in organizing research at the international level, such as in editorial boards of journals and in programme committees of conferences. Teams from the following institutions participate in ERNSI: CWI Amsterdam (coordinator); Institute for Econometrics, Operations Research and System Theory - Technical University Vienna; CESAME - University of Louvain (Leuven); INRIA Sophia Antipolis; IRISA - University of Rennes; Department of Engineering - University of Cambridge; CNR-LADSEB Padova; Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) Stockholm; Institute for System Technique - University of Linköping. For more information, see

Please contact:

Jan van Schuppen - CWI
Tel: +31 20 592 4085

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