Department of Computer Science

Theoretical Computer Science

Our faculty works on various areas of theoretical computer science and its applications to algorithms engineering and other sciences such as DNA computation.
Blackboard filled with figures and equations

Our faculty works on various areas of theoretical computer science and its applications to algorithms engineering and other sciences such as DNA computation. Our faculty and students have won various prestigious awards, including the best paper awards in FOCS (2019), ICALP (2018) and DISC (2017), as well as two ERC starting grants (2014 and 2017).

Research Areas

  • Algebraic Algorithms
  • Approximation Algorithms
  • Combinatorial Optimization
  • Cryptography, Security & Complexity
  • Distributed and Parallel Computing
  • Natural Computation
  • Parameterized Algorithms

Interested in joining us?

Aalto CS constantly looks for strong faculty members in all areas of computer science, including theory. The deadline is generally in January every year.
There are regular openings for postdoc and doctoral student positions.
For students in the Helsinki area, the best way to start exploring theory is to take our courses and/or to attend our weekly theory seminar. Feel free to drop an email to any of us if you need help browsing the courses.

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Jukka Suomela Research Group

Aalto researchers awarded for an article showing that algorithms cannot match more effectively than they do now

Any method designed to find a matching is either slow or leads to a wrong solution

Nantech-tapahtuma koostui esitelmistä ja posteriesityksistä. Kuva Matti Ahlgren / Aalto-yliopisto

Nantech brought nearly one hundred international researchers to Espoo

Understanding of computer science and mathematics becomes increasingly important in the field of DNA nanotechnology, says Professor Pekka Orponen

Tuomo Lempiäinen_photo by Matti Ahlgren

CS Dissertation: Tuomo Lempiäinen increases understanding of capabilities and limitations of distributed systems

During his doctoral studies, Tuomo Lempiäinen studied the theory of distributed computing and participated in the organization of the ALGO conference.

Jara Uitto sitting at Computer Science building, looking at the camera and wearing an orange t-shirt with a panda on it

Many practical issues are related to questions of theory – this steered Jara Uitto’s interest towards theoretical computer science

Even though theoretical computer science is – as its name suggests – theoretical, its connection to real-life questions is easy to draw, says Assistant Professor Jara Uitto.


Research groups

Distributed Algortihms figure, image: Jukka Suomela / Aalto University

Distributed Algorithms

Research focuses on the foundations of distributed computing. The key research question is related to the concept of locality in the context large computer networks.

Department of Computer Science
Natural Computation Research group

Natural Computation

The group seeks to understand, model, and program naturally occurring or nature-inspired self-organising processes.

Department of Computer Science
CS Building (T-talo) at Aalto University Campus

Combinatorics of Efficient Computations (external link)

Our group studies various aspects of efficient computations, including for instance approximation algorithms, online algorithms, exact algorithms, combinatorial optimization, and data structures.


Join Us

Aalto University / students working togeher / photography Aino Huovio

Computer Science - Computer, Communication and Information Sciences, Master of Science (Technology)

The Master of Science in Computer Science is grounded in leading-edge computing research at Aalto University, which is routinely ranked among the top 10 Computer Science departments in Europe. The programme offers a deep understanding on the design and analysis of algorithms, software, and computing technologies.

Study options
PML Research Group in Department of Computer Science

Doctoral track combines Master’s and doctoral studies

Top students selected to the doctoral track can have their studies tailored towards pursuing a doctoral degree and start working in the department’s research groups already during their Master’s studies.

Department of Computer Science
Picture of Aalto University

Aalto Doctoral Programme in Science

The Doctoral Programme in Science is a multidisciplinary programme with a unique combination of science, technology and business. The research done is committed to high standards of international excellence and the aim is to educate doctoral students in different research fields to tackle increasingly complex societal challenges in areas such as energy, environment, health and well-being. The doctoral programme offers a four-year doctoral programme in physics, mathematics, biomedical engineering, computer science or industrial engineering and management.

Study options


Doctoral Students


Alkida Balliu, Matti Karppa, Jukka Kohonen, Janne H. Korhonen, Tuomo Lempiäinen, Padraig O'Cathain, Dennis Olivetti, Christopher Purcell, Mikaël Rabie, Joel Rybicki, Louis Theran, Sumedha Uniyal, Przemysław Uznański.

Artistic depiction of a bright light in space / made by Ray Scipak

School of Science

Science for tomorrow’s technology, innovations and businesses

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