The Helsinki Doctoral Education Network in Information and Communications Technology (HICT) is a collaborative doctoral education network hosted jointly by Aalto University and University of Helsinki, the two leading universities within this area in Finland. The key objective of the HICT network is to serve as a collaboration and networking platform for doctoral students and supervisors combining all the relevant subfields of computer science and information technology at Aalto University and University of Helsinki.
The roots of the HICT network lie in the national computer science doctoral programs financed by the Academy of Finland and the Ministry of Education and Culture. These national programs were established to improve doctoral education and networking; and, importantly, they offered doctoral students an opportunity to fully focus on studying a doctoral degree within a four-year funded researcher position. HICT continues the traditions of these programs, but the network itself does not award doctoral degrees. Also, it does not directly fund doctoral student positions. HICT supervisors advertise open positions in their research groups usually twice a year through the joint HICT funding calls. Thus, funding for HICT doctoral student positions is provided by the partner universities. Activities of the HICT network are managed and financed by the Helsinki Institute for Information Technology (HIIT).
The HICT network involves at present over 80 professors and almost 300 doctoral students, and the participating units graduate altogether more than 40 new doctors each year. An important activity of HICT is to provide training outside of the official doctoral degree curricula, which aims to support the development and career goals of the doctoral students. Another key aspect in HICT activities is networking. It is valuable to meet other graduate students outside of their own research bubble and learn from the diverse research topics within HICT.
The participating university departments are:
- Department of Computer Science, Aalto University School of Science
- Department of Communications and Networking, Aalto University School of Electrical Engineering
- Department of Signal Processing and Acoustics, Aalto University School of Electrical Engineering
- Department of Computer Science, University of Helsinki
The research activities of HICT members are structured along five research area specific tracks:
- Algorithms and machine learning
- Life science informatics
- Networks, networked systems and services
- Software and service engineering and systems
- User centered and creative technologies
All doctoral student members within the HICT network are doctoral students of the partner universities. When a new doctoral student starts his or her doctoral studies at a HICT partner department, he or she by default becomes a HICT student member. Most of our doctoral students belong also to other doctoral education networks or programs in their home university or participate in national and international networks. For example, doctoral students in computer science at University of Helsinki belong to DoCS (The Doctoral Programme in Computer Science at University of Helsinki).
Currently HICT has over 80 supervisor members. All supervisors working at the HICT partner departments or in the ICT field in the partner universities may also be HICT supervisor members.
HICT Executive committee
The daily operations of HICT are managed by an executive committee that consists of representatives for each of the participating universities and schools, together with the HICT coordinator.
Professor, Director of HICT University of Helsinki School of Science
Professor, Aalto University School of Science
Professor, Aalto University School of Electrical Engineering
HR Coordinator, Aalto University School of Science
HICT coordinator, Aalto University School of Science
HICT Steering group
Broader decisions are taken by a steering group that comprises the executive committee plus two coordinating professors for each of the five research area tracks included in HICT:
- Professor Petri Myllymäki, Director of HICT (University of Helsinki)
- Professor Pekka Orponen (Aalto University, School of Science)
- HR Coordinator Laura Kuusisto-Noponen (Aalto University, School of Science)
- Academic Coordinator, Dr. Aija Kukkala (Aalto University, School of Science)
- Professor Stephan Sigg (Aalto University, School of Electrical Engineering)
- Professor Jyrki Kivinen, AML track co-chair (University of Helsinki)
- Professor Arno Solin, AML track co-chair (Aalto University)
- Professor Mikko Koivisto, LSI track co-chair (University of Helsinki)
- Professor Harri Lähdesmäki, LSI track co-chair (Aalto University)
- Professor Sasu Tarkoma, NNSS track co-chair (University of Helsinki)
- Professor Linh Truong, NNSS track co-chair (Aalto University)
- Professor Tomi Männistö, SSES track co-chair (University of Helsinki)
- Professor Casper Lassenius, SSES track co-chair (Aalto University)
- Professor Giulio Jacucci, UCCT track co-chair (University of Helsinki)
- Professor Perttu Hämäläinen, UCCT track co-chair (Aalto University)
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