Shorter biography

Dr Kai Puolamäki is Associate Professor in computer science and atmospheric sciences at the Department of Computer Science and Institute for Atmospheric and Earth System Research (INAR) at the University of Helsinki, where he has a research group. He completed his PhD in 2001 in theoretical physics at the University of Helsinki. His primary interests lie in the areas of data mining, machine learning, artificial intelligence, and related algorithms.

Dr Puolamäki holds a title of docent in information and computer science at the School of Science of Aalto University, Finland, and in Computer Science at University of Helsinki.

Dr Puolamäki has a web site at http://www.iki.fi/kaip/

Longer biography

Dr Kai Puolamäki is Associate Professor in computer science and atmospheric sciences at the Department of Computer Science and Institute for Atmospheric and Earth System Research (INAR) of the University of Helsinki, where he has a research group. He completed his PhD in 2001 in theoretical physics at the University of Helsinki. His primary interests lie in the areas of data mining, machine learning, artificial intelligence, and related algorithms. Dr Puolamäki holds a title of docent in information an computer science at the School of Science of Aalto University, Finland, and in computer science at University of Helsinki.

From January 2001 to December 2008 he was a teaching researcher (opettava tutkija) at the Department of Information and Computer Science (earlier known as Laboratory of Computer and Information Science) of the Aalto University (earlier known as Helsinki University of Technology) and from January 2009 to July 2009 a research coordinator at the same Department. From August 2009 to July 2010 he was a professor (pro tem) at the Department of Media Technology. From August 2010 to July 2012 he was a chief research scientist and from August to October 2012 again a research coordinator at the Department of Information and Computer Science. His tasks at Aalto University tasks included leading the Data Mining: Theory and Applications research group as well as coordination of the research activities at the Department of Information and Computer Science.

During 2001-2012 at Aalto University (earlier known as Helsinki University of Technology) Dr Puolamäki was in the groups of Prof Heikki Mannila and Prof Samuel Kaski. In his final years at Aalto University he was a group leader of the Data Mining: Theory and Applications research group. Dr Puolamäki was a member of the Finnish Centre of Excellence for Algorithmic Data Analysis Research (Algodan). He was a member and a group leader in the Algorithmic Data Analysis Research Programme of the Helsinki Institute for Information Technology HIIT

On December 2012 he moved to the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health (FIOH), where he was Director of the FIOH Brain Work Research Centre from November 2014 to December 2015. On September 2017 he returned to the Aalto University to a position of Professor of Practice in artificial intelligence, after which in September 2018 he was appointed to his current position at the University of Helsinki. Dr Puolamäki was a Vice Director of the Helsinki Institute for Information Technology HIIT from March 2018 to October 2020.

Dr Puolamäki has supervised and is currently instructing PhD students on various research topics related to data analysis. He has been invited to give lectures on these topics, and he has organized and been a reviewer for various top journal and conferences.

Dr Puolamäki’s published work in computer science includes theory and applications of data analysis including analysis of algorithms, machine learning, data mining, and information retrieval, as well as disciplines such as user modeling, ecological data analysis, and sleep research (list of publications).

Dr Puolamäki has planned, established, and lectured several courses in computer science which are still being lectured by others, including a post-graduate level course T-61.5010 Information visualization (lectured yearly by him on 2001-2008 and 2018) and a bachelor level course T-61.3050 Machine Learning: Basic Principles (lectured by him on 2007-2008). He is currently regularly lecturing courses DATA11002 Introduction to Machine Learning (2019-) and ATM4171 Introduction to Machine Learning for Atmospheric and Earth System Research (2020-).

Dr Puolamäki co-founded a start-up company Energiansäästöpalvelu Enespa Oy, established in 1999, where he served as a chairman of the board in 1999-2004. In 2002-2005 he was a member of the board of the civil rights group Electronic Frontier Finland ry (Effi), established in 2001. He has advised the Finnish government and the parliament on topics related to digitalization and civil rights; his expert statements to the government and the parliament are listed in his list of publications.

Dr Puolamäki is married and has two children. Dr Puolamäki’s hobbies include playing with kids and computer systems as well as long-distance running. He has recently covered 10K by foot in 42m:36s (10 km, Aktia Maantiejuoksucup, 5. osakilpailu, 18 March 2017) and half marathon in 1h:39m:00s (21.0975 km, Helsinki Half Marathon, 10 June 2017).

Dr Puolamäki has a web site at http://www.iki.fi/kaip/.