HiDATA event 3 September 2020: Sustainability and Data Science

Sustainability and Data Science event by HiDATA and HELSUS

Time: 9:00-11:00 am.
Place: Tiedekulma Think Corner/ webinar

How do we tackle sustainability questions with the help of data and data science? What is sustainability research? How do you measure sustainability and in what sectors is that vital? What are the needs and priorities of the society? How does the multidisciplinary research in Helsinki University answer to the demand?

The event was organised by the Helsinki Center of Data Science HiDATA and the Institute of Sustainability Science HELSUS. You can find the presentation links in the program.



9:00 Program starts

Why Sustainability? What are the needs and priorities of the industry and the society?

  • People Flow Optimization for Sustainable Buildings, Juha-Matti Kuusinen, Kone Oyj, Head of People Flow Optimization, Technology and Innovation
  • Sustainable economy in a changing information environment, Eeva Hellström, SITRA, Senior Lead, Foresight and Strategy
  • Questions and Discussion. Moderator prof. Sasu Tarkoma

How does the multidisciplinary research in Helsinki University answer to the demand?

11:00 Program ends.


Juha-Matti Kuusinen is the head of People Flow Optimization at KONE Corporation and responsible for the development of KONE’s people flow planning tools, intelligent elevator group control systems and people flow analytics. He has a strong interest in analytics, algorithms and artificial intelligence which are some of the key ingredients in creating transportation systems and digital solutions that enable effortless urban living and change the way we design, understand and communicate about people flow in buildings. He received his D.Sc. (Tech.) degree in operations research in 2015 from the Aalto University, Finland.


Eeva Hellström is Senior Lead in Foresight and Strategy at the Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra, which is an independent and future oriented public think-and-do tank. Eeva has a DSc degree in environmental economics. She is particularly interested in dealing with increasingly complex social phenomena in a rapidly changing, digitalizing and volatile information environment. In recent years, Eeva has particularly worked with developing new approaches to a socially and environmentally sustainable economy, and to the knowledge-policy interface.


Laura Ruotsalainen is Associate Professor of Spatiotemporal Data Analysis for Sustainability Science at the Department of Computer Science at the University of Helsinki. Her current research interests include the development of computer vision, estimation and machine learning algorithms for creating and using accurate and reliable spatiotemporal data, namely navigation data, especially for the development of autonomous systems enabling sustainable smart cities.

Sasu Tarkoma is Professor of Computer Science at the University of Helsinki and Head of the Department of Computer Science. He is also Director of the Helsinki Center for Data Science and affiliated with the Helsinki Institute for Information Technology HIIT and the Finnish Center for AI (FCAI).  He is chairman of the Finnish Scientific Advisory Board for Defence (MATINE). He has authored 4 textbooks and has published over 200 scientific articles.  He has seven granted US Patents. His research has received a number of Best Paper awards and mentions, for example at IEEE PerCom, ACM CCR, and ACM OSR. As an example flagship research project, he is leading the MegaSense project, which aims at deploying a wide array of low-cost urban air-monitoring stations and employing the data in prediction models.

Anne Toppinen is Director of Helsinki Institute of Sustainability Science (HELSUS). She has worked since 2008 as Professor of forest economics and business at University of Helsinki. Her expertise focuses on corporate sustainability in bio-based and circular businesses, as well as related market analysis and development of sustainable business models. She has also studied different policy questions in the natural resource context and is interested in how to accelerate transformative changes toward sustainability.  Anne is one of the leading forest economists in Europe, with over 160 scientific peer reviewed publications. She has supervised 14 doctoral theses and about 100 master’s theses.


Jussi Kangasharju received his MSc from Helsinki University of Technology in 1998. He received his Diplome d'Etudes Approfondies (DEA) from the Ecole Superieure des Sciences Informatiques (ESSI) in Sophia Antipolis in 1998. In 2002 he received his PhD from University of Nice Sophia Antipolis/Institut Eurecom. In 2002 he joined Darmstadt University of Technology (TUD), first as post-doctoral researcher, and from 2004 onwards as assistant professor. Since June 2007 Jussi is a professor at the department of computer science at University of Helsinki. Between 2009 and 2012 he was the director of the Future Internet research program at Helsinki Institute for Information Technology (HIIT). Jussi's research interests are information-centric networks, edge and cloud computing, content distribution, opportunistic networks, and green ICT. He is a member of IEEE and ACM.

Leena Järvi is Associate Professor in Applied Urban Meteorology at the Institute for Atmospheric and Earth System Research and Helsinki Institute of Sustainability Science at the University of Helsinki. Her current research interests cover carbon storage capacity of urban vegetation and soil, and high-resolution meteorological and air quality modelling in urban areas using a large eddy simulation model. She has published over 50 scientific papers, is board member of the International Association for Urban Climate (IAUC) and acts as editor in Geoscientific Model Development and Scientific Reports.