Department of Mathematics and Systems Analysis

Current

Defence of dissertation in the field of mathematics, Razane Tajeddine, M.Sc., 7 March 2019

7. February 2019

Razane Tajeddine, M.Sc., will defend the dissertation "Private Information Retrieval from Coded Storage" on Thursday 7 March 2019 at 2 pm (at 14) at the Aalto University School of Science, lecture hall M1, Otakaari 1, Espoo. The dissertation is about coding theoretic constructions for private information retrieval from distributed storage systems.

Professor Simon Blackburn, Royal Holloway, University of London, will act as the opponent. Custos is Professor Camilla Hollanti, Department of Mathematics and Systems Analysis.  
Dissertation press release (in English) is available at:
https://www.aalto.fi/events/defence-of-dissertation-in-the-field-of-mathematics-razane-tajeddine-msc


Defence of dissertation in the field of systems and operations research, Sampsa Ruutu, M.Sc.(Tech.)

22. January 2019

Sampsa Ruutu, M.Sc.(Tech.), will defend the dissertation "Dynamic modelling for the analysis and support of systemic innovations and competition strategies" on Friday 25 January 2019 at 12 noon at the Aalto University School of Science, lecture hall M1, Otakaari 1, Espoo. In the dissertation, tools were developed for understanding and developing systemic innovations and competition strategies.

Opponent: Assistant Professor Bob Walrave, Eindhoven University of Technology, The Netherlands

Custos: Professor Kai Virtanen, Aalto University School of Science, Department of Mathematics and Systems Analysis

Electronic dissertation: http://urn.fi/URN:ISBN:978-952-60-8340-7


Summer internships 2019

22. January 2019
Department of Mathematics and Systems Analysis is looking for

summer interns in mathematics and systems analysis for summer 2019

Summer interns will work as research assistants having also other duties at the department. The results of the work will be reported as a bachelor’s thesis, a master’s thesis or a special assignment. We expect the applicants to have completed the studies of first two years. Salary is 1943 € - 2137 € per month depending on your education level.

You can find the eRecruitment application form here.

Attach one PDF file (LastnameFirstname.PDF), which should include the following:

-    application 
-    cv 
-    transcript of records (does not have to be official) 

Please state in your application

1)    in which research group you want to work and/or the number of the research topic. You can also prioritize several research groups. You can find the groups and topics at https://math.aalto.fi/en/studies/bachelor/topics/ and http://sal.aalto.fi/fi/toihin/kesatyot.
 
2)    if you have previous (summer) work experience at the department.

3)    which working period you prefer. Summer job takes usually 3 months, and the six-day-holiday must be used during the summer, preferably in July. You can also take unpaid leave in addition, but the working time must be 3 months.

If you apply to Systems and Operations Research Group, please visit http://sal.aalto.fi/fi/toihin/kesatyot/ for more detailed topic descriptions and contact persons.

Deadline for the applications is 14 February 2019.

More information from:

Mathematics: Juha Kinnunen (juha.k.kinnunen@aalto.fi)

Systems and Operations Research: Mikko Harju (mikko.harju@aalto.fi) 

In application process-related questions: Johanna Glader johanna.glader(at)aalto.fi
Summer interns will be chosen by 4 March 2019 at the latest.

The Art and Science of Folding - Paul Jackson 25.2.2019

16. January 2019

Aalto Mathematics and Arts Colloquium - Public talk
Paul Jackson
Monday 25th February 15:00 - 16:00
Aalto yliopisto, Otakaari 1, Aalto-sali, Espoo
http://matharts.aalto.fi/guests.html

TALK ABSTRACT
The phenomenon of 'The Fold' is very common throughout manufacturing and the natural world, but only recently have designers, engineers, scientists and others begun to study it as a stand-alone subject. The lecture will offer an overview of this fascinating multi-disciplinary subject, showing how folding is used in space exploration, nanotechnology, fashion design, math education ...and much more!

PAUL JACKSON 
Paul Jackson has been a professional paper folder and origami artist since 1983. He divides his time between teaching 'Folding' to students from many design specialisms, writing books (his 2011 book 'Folding Techniques for Designers' is a best seller), creating folded artworks and being a consultant for a great diversity of projects. He has an MA in Fine Art from University College London.

www.origami-artist.com


Sustainable ideas and inspiring people presented with Aalto SCI Alumna of the Year and SCI Awards 2018

20. December 2018

Annu Nieminen graduated from the Information networks programme in 2009. She is a SCI graduate with a bold entrepreneurial attitude making an impact both nationally and globally. Recently she was also awarded as one of the MIT Technology Review “Innovators Under 35”.

“During the studies, I learned how to combine technology with mathematical and logical thinking in order to solve big and complex challenges. The concrete tools include for instance data structures, algorithms and power structures. I aim to use everything I have learned to create better tools to reallocate earth’s and society’s resources”, says Annu Nieminen.

SCI Awards 2018 for the great ideas and achievements

SCI Awards celebrate the great work and achievements of the faculty, staff and students annually. The 2018 SCI Awards are given in six categories based on the proposals of the staff and students.

Innovation of the Year award is given to Jussi Gillberg and Professors Pekka Marttinen, Hiroshi Mamitsuka and Samuel Kaski for using machine learning to tackle the impending food crisis. Their winning project uses machine learning in arable farming, greenhouse cultivation and plant breeding. The innovation’s main impacts are societal and global: it will help to avoid a long-term humanitarian crisis and improve the efficiency of food production, which is paramount in climate change mitigation.

Professor Jari Saramäki received the Scientific Communication Award for his excellent and popular blog posts and book, on scientific writing. He is able to reach the whole scientific community.

Coordinator Esa Heikkinen was awarded the Service Person of the Year. Esa is always helpful, knows how to solve problems, positive, kind and on good mood – and even considered as the most patient man in the world.

Students Akseli Paukkeri and Kristian Arjas are the two Teaching Assistants of the Year. Akseli is inspirational and masters the subject. In addition, he is very open to questions and the needs of the students. Kristian gives brilliant views on the course subject.

Teaching Award also goes to two persons, Senior University Lecturer Björn Ivarsson and Professor Jaakko Lehtinen. Björn receives excellent feedback for the Swedish and English service teaching math courses that he lectures. In addition to being super enthusiastic and knowledgeable in his field, Jaakko captivates his audience in his lectures. His ability to teach and explain, and spark intelligent discussions is remarkable.

SCI guilds Athene, Fyysikkokilta, Prodeko and Tietokilta receive the Team-building and Co-operation award for orientation week activities and taking care of new students throughout their first year. In addition to the activities during orientation week, the volunteers take care of the new students already weeks before the beginning of the semester. This is a recognition of the continuous work done by the guilds.

Other nominees were Heikki Koponen, Juha Äkräs and Kaj Hagros for the Alumnus of the Year, Nonappa, Robin Ras and Heikki Nieminen along with their groups for the Innovation of the Year, David Radnell for the Scientific Communication Award, Ivan Degtyarenko, Richard Darst, Minna Günes, Paula Hämäläinen, Quang Tran, Kenrick Bingham, Eeva Lampinen, Noora Suominen de Rios and TuAS-janitors for the Service Person of the Year, Marko Havu, Vesa Vahermaa, Tuomo Tanila, Katri Niemi, Assistants of Machine Learning: Basic Principles and Tolou Shadbahr for the Teaching Assistant of the Year, Eerikki Mäki, Jukka Suomela, Esa Saarinen, Andrew Paverd, Alex Jung, Tuomas Aura, N. Asokan, Eija Kujanpää - Erasmus Mundus application "grant writers", Pekka Alestalo and Lauri Nummenmaa for the Teaching Award, and Hirskyj-Douglas Ilyena, Ellie Dillon, Risto Rajala, Richard Darst, Enrico Glerean, Hanna Renvall & Annika Hulten and Prodeko & DIEM for the Team-building and Co-operation Award.


Doctoral Candidate in Applied Algebraic Geometry

16. November 2018

The Algebra and Discrete Mathematics Research Group in the Department of Mathematics and Systems Analysis is looking for a doctoral candidate in the area of applied algebraic geometry and algebraic statistics to work under the supervision of Prof. Kaie Kubjas.

Preference will be given to candidates with strong knowledge in algebra. Programming skills and experience in statistics, optimization and discrete mathematics will be greatly valued, but are not mandatory. An excellent command of English is required.

Review of applications will begin on January 1, 2019 and continue until the position is filled. See the whole announcement and apply here.


Crystal Flowers in Halls of Mirrors course - apply now

15. November 2018
The course - MS-E1000 Crystal Flowers in Halls of Mirrors: Mathematics meets Art and Architecture - is open to all from bachelor's students to doctoral candidates, from the fields of mathematics and technology to the arts, and from chemistry to business. A maximum of 50 students are expected at the course, and the application period ends 15 December. The course is worth 10 credits and it is held once every two years.

The course has been planned together with Reetta Kalajo Chief Curator at EMMA - the Espoo Museum of Modern Art, and Sanna Katajavuori, Cultural Producer at the Espoo Cultural Centre. The course will have several visiting lecturers. For example, EMMA experts and contracted artists bring out artistic and technical points of view pertaining to the design and implementation of the exhibition. Paul Jackson from Tel Aviv will hold a workshop for students as well as a public lecture on The Art and Science of Folding. Professor Toni Kotnik and producer of the exhibition, Pablo Riquelme, and their support teams will bring the architectural point of view to the course.

‘The course concentrates on setting up the exhibition, which will take place at the Espoo Cultural Centre. Taking part in the course requires more commitment than a theoretical course alone, because it is implemented as teamwork”, says Senior University Lecturer Kirsi Peltonen.

Participation in the course is possible even for those with a limited background in mathematics. Each group will have skilled students with as wide a range of talents as possible. The course is a unique opportunity to see the reality of people from other fields and to do work hands-on.

Further information on the previous implementations of the course and the Math & Arts whole.

Sign up in Oodi.

Send motivational letters as attachments to the MyCourses page of the course.


SCI Awards 2018 - Call for nominations open until Nov 16th

25. October 2018

SCI Awards celebrates the great work and achievements of our faculty, staff and students annually. As of 2018 the proposal form will be open continuously, so you can propose nominees throughout the year and the proposals will be reviewed annually in November.

For SCI Awards 2018 the proposals will be collected until November 16th 2018. Proposals starting November 17th will be included in the 2019 nominations and review process. You may propose a nominee in all of the categories, in just one, or anything in between. Please fill in a separate proposal form for each nominee. More information here.


High school students got a taste of the limitless possibilities of technology at Shaking up Tech

24. October 2018

200 young women from various high schools in Finland took part in Shaking up Tech event at Aalto University on the International Day of the Girl 11 October. The morning's talks from tech influencers—receiving loud cheers—outlined the various and exciting education and career opportunities in the field of technology.

Programmer and author Linda Liukas encouraged the students to reflect on their inner self and their own strengths to change the world—and find their own unique place in the world of technology.

Other speakers included Annu Nieminen from The Upright Project, Hanna Nikkilä from Microsoft, Professor of Energy Technology and Energy Economics Sanna Syri, Professor of Statistics Pauliina Ilmonen, and Irena Bakić who leads the CodeBus Africa project from Aalto University.

In her speech Annu Nieminen talked about using artificial intelligence to assess the overall impact of companies on the world, and Pauliina Ilmonen described her love for mathematical theorems and formulas and how easy it easy it is to mislead and create alternative truths with statistical information.

In the workshops, some of the participants got to combine mathematics and art, some had their first try at coding, while others had a chance to produce a new kind of cellulose-based textile fibre from recycled materials.

shaking_up_tech_sykemittari_700_400.jpg

One of the workshops was about constructing and programming a heart rate monitor. Image: Mikko Raskinen.

‘The world would be heading in a much better direction if everyone would be as open, curious and enthusiastic as the girls taking part in my workshop. It felt like they taught me more than I was able to teach them,’ says Linda Liukas.

During the study fair in the evening, students were able to get to know Aalto University’s study opportunities and student life, and also meet the event’s partner companies. At the fair, they were also introduced to Valo Motion’s Augmented Climbing Wall which took off from an Aalto University research project and has since been sold to multiple countries around the world.

Further information:

https://shakinguptech.com
https://www.instagram.com/shakinguptech/


Lecturer in Statistics

23. October 2018
We invite applications from talented individuals for a lecturer track position in statistics. The post will be filled on a fixed term or permanent basis at the University Teacher, University Lecturer or Senior University Lecturer level on the Aalto University lecturer track depending on the competence and merits of the applicant.

The successful applicant should hold a doctoral degree in statistics, operations research, mathematics, or a related discipline. The ability and enthusiasm to teach relevant courses on the bachelor’s level are central requirements. Excellent written and spoken English is essential. Moreover, Aalto University reserves the right to consider good command of Finnish as a decisive advantage when filling the position, because most of the bachelor’s level teaching offered by the department is in Finnish. Advancing diversity is a core value of the Department of Mathematics and Systems Analysis.

See the whole announcement with application instructions here. Application deadline is 30 November, 2018.

Lecturer in Mathematics

23. October 2018
We invite applications from talented individuals for a lecturer track position in mathematics.The post will be filled on a fixed term or permanent basis at the University Teacher, University Lecturer or Senior University Lecturer level on the Aalto University lecturer track depending on the competence and merits of the applicant.

The successful applicant should hold a doctoral degree in mathematics, operations research, statistics, or a related discipline. The ability and enthusiasm to teach relevant courses on the bachelor’s level are central requirements. Excellent written and spoken English is essential. Moreover, Aalto University reserves the right to consider good command of Finnish as a decisive advantage when filling the position, because most of the bachelor’s level teaching offered by the department is in Finnish. Advancing diversity is a core value of the Department of Mathematics and Systems Analysis.

See the whole announcement with application instructions here. Application deadline is 30 November, 2018.

For Chris Brzuska, truth and understanding are supreme virtues

20. September 2018

What kind of research do you do?

In April 2018, I started as an Assistant Professor at both the Department of Mathematics and Systems Analysis and the Department of Computer Science. My research is about cryptography and its connections to IT security, verification, complexity theory, algorithms, and discrete mathematics.

For four years already, I have been part of a vast, collaborative effort in analysing and standardising a new version of the TLS protocol. It’s the main protocol for secure communication on the internet, for instance online banking.

Our informal group includes experts from both industry and academia. The design of the protocol for secure communication is a huge task, and we are now in the final stages of the project. One of the difficulties is backward compatibility: we need to make sure that the new protocol is compatible with the old versions but does not inherit their security weaknesses.

How did you become a researcher?

When I finished high school, I had plans of becoming a very successful banker. Although the banking business was a lot of fun, I realised I was not really accelerating my personal growth. After only six months in banking, at the age of 19, I decided that instead, I want to become a researcher in mathematics.

I studied mathematics in Germany and in Southern France. During my master’s studies, I ended up in a computer science class designing secure cryptography against arbitrary and adverse algorithms. I enjoyed that a lot.

Marc Fischlin, the professor of cryptography at Technische Universität Darmstadt, offered me a PhD position in the same research area—and I accepted the offer. Soon I ended up at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton for six months, followed by Tel Aviv University and Microsoft research in Cambridge.

Finally, I started as an assistant professor for IT Security Analysis at the Hamburg University of Technology where I worked closely with NXP Semiconductors for two and a half years before moving to Finland and Aalto University.

What are the highlights of your career?

I rather enjoy the highlights every single day. I feel very lucky and grateful that I can interact with great people in a way that is beneficial for both them and myself.

What is the most important quality for a researcher?

In my opinion, a good researcher is interested in and committed to truth and understanding.

I find it meaningful and fulfilling that research allows me to grow my understanding, not only of cryptography, but of many other topics as well. In teaching, I have the chance to help my students grow their ability to understand, regardless of the topic. I find it very rewarding.

What do you expect from the future?

During the interview process, I came to Finland for several days and felt comfortable. Already then, I had a very strong gut feeling Aalto will be a good environment for research and teaching—and me personally.

I have started to collaborate with my colleagues in discrete mathematics, algorithms and IT security, and I have already taught my first class. I can now confirm that Aalto is a good environment for research and teaching—and I look forward to continue enjoying to be here.


Ahti Salo is the Espoo Ambassador of 2018

29. August 2018

Professor Ahti Salo is an internationally known and respected expert in operations research and an active member of Finnish and international associations in his field.

Professor Salo is the head of the Systems Analysis Laboratory research group in the Department of Mathematics and Systems Analysis. He has developed methods to support risk management, efficiency analysis and decision-making, and has led numerous projects in cooperation with companies and public organisations.

Currently Salo is the Principal Investigator of the six-year Platform Value Now project funded by the Strategic Research Council of the Academy of Finland. This project studies the platform economy from different perspectives. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the Society of Scientists and Parliament Members (Tutkas) and the Foresight Steering Group appointed by the Prime Minister’s Office.

”It has been fascinating to see how mathematical models help to foresee the development prospects of a rapidly developing platform economy and manage risks of cybersecurity,” says Professor Salo.

In addition to scientific positions of trust, Salo has taken part in the organisation of several international conferences in Finland and abroad. In 2017, he was the main local organiser of two international conferences held at Aalto University´s Otaniemi campus.

The Finnish Operations Research Society is considering applying to host the main European operations research conference in Espoo in 2022. Should this come true, the conference would bring 3000 participants to Finland.

“With the new metro line connecting Espoo to capital Helsinki and the development of the Aalto University campus area, Espoo is, by all accounts, an attractive destination for this type of a larger conference”, says Salo.

Further information on Ahti Salo: http://sal.aalto.fi/ahti


 


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