Seven new Honorary Doctorates in Technology to be conferred at Aalto University

The Aalto University schools of technology will confer honorary doctorates on seven eminent persons in the fields of science, technology and architecture.

The degrees will be awarded at a ceremony to take place on 15 June 2018 in Otaniemi, Espoo, Finland.

This will be the fourth joint Ceremonial Conferment of Doctoral Degrees organised by the Aalto University schools of technology: the School of Chemical Technology, the School of Electrical Engineering, the School of Engineering and the School of Science, and the Department of Architecture in the School of Arts, Design and Architecture. More information on the website

The persons to be awarded Honorary Doctorates in Technology are as follows:

  • Professor Jon Crowcroft  
  • Director General Lea Kauppi
  • Architect Kaarina Löfström
  • Professor Hüseyin Şehitoğlu 
  • Professor John Shawe-Taylor
  • Board Chair Risto Siilasmaa
  • Professor Ichiro Terasaki

Professor Jon Crowcroft

Jon Crowcroft is currently Professor of Communications Systems at the University of Cambridge, where his research focuses on networked systems. His has made his main research achievements in the area of multimedia and group communication. Crowcroft is a ground-breaking developer of the internet, whose work with satellite connection technologies in the 1980s paved the way for rural broadband. He has developed sound and video standards for IP networks; among his most recent research interests are opportunistic networks. In researcher communities in the areas of internet, multimedia, and networked systems, Crowcroft in known for his enthusiasm, creativity and open-mindedness. Crowcroft has collaborated actively with Aalto University professors and research groups, and this collaboration has led to many scientific publications. Crowcroft has acted as an opponent at public examinations of doctoral dissertations at Aalto, hosted visits at his home university for Aalto professors on sabbatical leave, and cooperated with Aalto researchers in several EU projects.

Director General Lea Kauppi

Lea Kauppi has a doctorate in agriculture and forestry with a major in limnology. Kauppi has acted as Director General of the multidisciplinary Finnish environmental research institute, the Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE) since its foundation in 1995.  Lea Kauppi has extensive experience of working at the interface between the science and politics of environmental issues. She has contributed to the development of international and multisectoral strategic research groups in the field of environmental research set up to address great environmental challenges like climate change. She has helped develop methods for advancing the circular economy and assessing environmental sustainability. She has also been involved in the evaluation of EU framework programmes and served on several review panels for European research institutes and research programmes. She has held several positions of trust both in Finland and abroad. She has also collaborated with many research groups of the former Helsinki University of Technology and the current Aalto University.

Architect Kaarina Löfström

Kaarina Löfström has had a long, successful and versatile career as an architect, both in her own architectural office and in the technical department of the building division of Valio. She has designed industrial and office buildings as well as research institutes. Löfström has mastered the design of large buildings down to the smallest details and is bold in her use of materials and shapes. Her work has been on display at exhibitions and in architecture publications in both Finland and abroad. Löfström’s architecture shows her ambition for designing human-centred working environments. Examples of the work she has done for her own architectural office are the Otaniemi-based buildings Innopoli 1 and 2, the former being awarded the Steel Structure of the Year award (Teräsrakennepalkinto) in 2001. She also served as chief architect in the renovation of Aalto University’s Chemical Technology building. Löfström received a state-awarded three-year artist grant in 1996 and the State Prize for Architecture in 2001.  She worked for a long time as a teaching specialist in the subject of working environment development at Helsinki University of Technology. Through teaching future architects, Löfström has had a far-reaching influence on the development of the Finnish working environment.

Professor Hüseyin Şehitoğlu 

Hüseyin Şehitoğlu is a professor in solid mechanics at the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign (UIUC). Among his research interests are the usability and modelling of materials under demanding conditions. He has served as Head of the Department of Mechanical Science and Engineering at his home university. In the field of engineering, he is esteemed as an expert in professorial career-track matters, and he is highly reputed in educational development, especially in doctoral education. An advocate of new and challenging research fields, he stresses the importance of strategic thinking in university activities and making long-term research strategies.  Professor Şehitoğlu has been a member of the Aalto Scientific Advisory Board since the beginning and he has served as its Chair. He has also collaborated with Aalto researchers in the field of engineering materials.

Professor John Shawe-Taylor

John Shawe-Tayloris a professor of computer science at University College London (UCL), where he also acts as Director of the Centre for Computational Statistics and Machine Learning.  Shawe-Taylor’s influence has been especially prominent in the analysis and development of algorithms for principled machine learning based on statistical leaning theory. His work has contributed to the resurgence of interest in machine learning, through the introduction and application of kernel methods and support vector machines to new areas, such as machine vision, document classification and brain scan analysis.  Shawe-Taylor has engaged in diverse collaborative endeavours with Aalto University. He has been an active member of the Aalto University Scientific Advisory Board, and has helped Aalto strengthen its machine learning network. In addition to having actively developed Aalto’s research collaboration, he has supervised students and produced joint publications with Aalto.

Board Chair Risto Siilasmaa

Risto Siilasmaa has acted as the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Nokia since 2012, having served on the board as a member since 2008. He is also a founder and Chairman of F-Secure. A major player in Finland’s business life and information economy, Siilasmaa is one of the nation’s leading visionaries on the societal-economic transformation of the digital revolution, having been a forerunner in, for example, his use and advocacy of MOOCs (Massive Online Open Courses). In his career and in his person, Siilasmaa combines a high-tech and entrepreneurial spirit with economic and societal renewal based on a talent for business. Siilasmaa is an active investor in the technology field and a staunch supporter and mentor to the Aalto University start-up community. Siilasmaa also served as Chair of Aalto’s ‘The Future is Made Today’ fundraising campaign from 2014 to 2017.

Professor Ichiro Terasaki

Ichiro Terasaki is a professor in functional materials and materials physics at the Department of Physics at Nagoya University. Terasaki works in the area of experimental condensed matter physics, especially in the conductivity of transition-metal oxides and in organic conductors and metal compounds. Terasaki has long-standing collaborative ties with the University, extending back to Aalto’s predecessor, Helsinki University of Technology. Thanks to his assistance, the universities of Nagoya and Aalto have in place an interactive collaborative relationship for training and research in functional materials. Terasaki has made numerous visits to Aalto, where he has held seminars and lectures, and Aalto has made reciprocal visits to his home university. He has been very active in contributing to research collaboration, particularly in Finnish–Japanese research into new custom-designed thermoelectric oxide materials. His influence has been instrumental in the success of this field at Aalto.

Decisions concerning the recipients of the honorary doctorates in the ceremonial conferment of doctoral degrees in 2018 have been made by the academic committees of each of the schools of technology. According to Aalto University’s administrative guidelines, a school may, in connection with a ceremonial conferment of doctoral degrees, but also at other times, award an honorary doctorate and associated symbols to a person who, through his or her scientific or artistic activities or through merits obtained in the promotion of science or arts or other cultural activity, is considered worthy of such recognition.

The conferment ceremonies will be organised by the School of Engineering.

Dean, Professor Gary Marquis
Tel. +35840 7201 093
[email protected]

Project Manager
Tatu Pohjola
Tel. +35850 5760 125
[email protected]

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