Carmen Sicking

Lunchtime Seminar - Prof. Dr. Thomas Bäck und Prof. Dr. Aske Plaat (Universität Leiden)

An Overview of Data Science and Optimization at LIACS
Tuesday, 21. June 2016 - 12:00 to Saturday, 15. June 2024 - 5:55, Leo 18


Thomas Bäck is professor of computer science at LIACS since 2002. His research interests are in data science, optimization, and applications in life sciences and industry, including e.g. the automotive and consumer goods industry. He collaborates with companies such as BMW, Honda, Volkswagen, and others. Thomas has about 300 publications, including two books and two handbooks. He received the IEEE Computational Intelligence Society Award 2015 for his pioneering work in synthesizing evolutionary computation. His PhD thesis received the best PhD award from the “Gesellschaft für Informatik” in Germany in 1995.

Aske Plaat is professor of Data Science at Leiden University, and Scientific Director of the Institute of Computer Science (LIACS). He has a background in artificial intelligence and distributed systems. His research interests are in large scale machine learning. He has won the Novag Award for the best computer chess publication. He is co-author of an ERC Advanced Grant on high energy physics and machine learning algorithms. Previously he has worked at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Tilburg University, NHTV Breda, the University of Alberta, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.


Data science and optimization are core research areas at the Leiden Institute of Advanced Computer Science since the formation of the institute 20 years ago. Only recently, industry has also become aware of the huge potential of the corresponding technologies for solving relevant business problems. In this presentation, we will give an overview of some of the data science and optimization research and applications at LIACS. Some of our current algorithm development work will be explained briefly, with a link to the practical relevance of such developments. For both data science and optimization, we will then give some examples of practical applications, in areas such as sensor data analysis, biology and life sciences, and industrial process quality optimization including e.g. anomaly detection.