The Software Languages Lab of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB/SOFT) originates from the 2009 merger of the Programming Technology Lab with the Systems and Software Engineering Lab, each founded in 1987.
The Software Languages Lab is currently headed by Prof. Dr. Theo D’Hondt, Prof. Dr. Viviane Jonckers, Prof. Dr. Wolfgang De Meuter, Prof. Dr. Elisa Gonzalez Boix, and Prof. Dr. Coen De Roover. Broadly speaking, the lab is active in the design, implementation and application of better languages to support the software engineering life cycle. This includes programming languages, formal languages, meta languages, modeling languages, etc.
The Software Languages Lab covers all themes in the corresponding research spectrum, including:
- design of languages (e.g., support for advanced modularity, distribution, etc.)
- efficient implementation of languages (e.g., virtual machines, parallel execution, etc.)
- application domains of languages (e.g., cloud-based and mobile software, meta-level programming, etc.)
- tool support for languages (e.g., bug detection tools, refactoring tools, etc.)
- formal study of languages (e.g., type systems, static analysis, etc.)
Over the years, VUB/SOFT has grown to an internationally acclaimed research group with expertise in programming language design and software engineering. Testament to this expertise is its track record of successful fundamental (FWO), strategic basic (IWT-SBO and Innoviris) and European research funding. Over 40 PhDs and a multitude of high-end publications at international conferences and in international journals have resulted. The team itself has organized multiple conferences such as AOSD and ECOOP in the past. It has also active collaborations with other universities and research labs; within Belgium and in France, Germany, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, the United States, and several Latin-American countries.