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

SCI Alumna 2018 Annu Nieminen is an entrepreneur with a passion to encourage companies in maximizing the positive impact on the society. SCI awardees are described as inspirational, helpful, patient, and knowledgeable persons in the community.
Aalto SCI Alumna of the Year and SCI Awardees 2018

Annu Nieminen was named the Alumna of the Year 2018 by Aalto University School of Science. Annu Nieminen is the founder and CEO of The Upright Project. Her company’s aim is to create incentives for companies to maximize their positive impact on the society instead of just optimizing their profit. To achieve this, the Upright Project has created a quantification model assisted by artificial intelligence, aimed at producing information that is reliable and based on scientific and comparative data.

“Annu Nieminen, along with her company, is involved in the sustainability challenges of the earth and our society at large. She is also a strong and brave role model for all the women in the fields of technology”, says Dean Jouko Lampinen.

She is also a strong and brave role model for all the women in the fields of technology.

Jouko Lampinen

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.

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