Introducing the Keynote Speakers

Our speakers are all top-level experts in their field, from various universities and research groups or companies - join the proceedings to find out their views on the various topics featured in the programme!
Episode I

Keynote Speakers

Picture of Linda Liukas

Linda Liukas

Storyteller, innovator and illustrator
Founder of Rails Girls

Linda is a programmer, storyteller and illustrator from Helsinki, Finland. Her book series Hello Ruby introduces the whimsical world of technology for kids and has been translated to over 25 languages.

Linda is a central figure in the world of programming and has worked on edutech already before it was called that. She is the founder of Rails Girls, a global phenomenon teaching the basics of programming for young women all over the world. Further, she believes that code is the 21st century literacy and the need for people to speak the ABC of Programming is imminent. She believes our world is increasingly run by software and we need more diversity in the people who are building it.

Linda has studied in business, design and engineering in Aalto University and product engineering in Stanford University.

Picture of Ari Kynäslahti

Ari Kynäslahti

Vice President, CTO, Head of Strategy and Technology, Mobile Networks, Nokia

Ari Kynäslahti has a long career working at Nokia. He joined Nokia in the beginning of 1995. In Nokia and Nokia Siemens Networks he has worked in many manager positions, for example as Head of Mobile Networks Product Management, Head of LTE Product Management, Head of Global Radio Sales and Head of WCDMA Product Management as well as multiple positions in R&D and Business Development.

In his current position as Vice President Strategy & Technology, CTO he is responsible for creating business, technology and partnership strategies for MN and contributing to Nokia level strategy. He is also responsible for MN level portfolio and investment management as well as roadmaps and product decisions for MN SoC:s, BTS platform including RF platforms and baseband platforms and to define and maintain the product leadership plans in RF, BB, automation, AI/ML, ORAN/vRAN architecture and Private Wireless Networks. In addition to these, in his current position he is managing the co-operation with key interface partners, i.e. R&D, sales, standardization, research, chipset vendors and device vendors.

Kynäslahti has M.Sc in Radio Technology with two minors: Corporate Strategy & international business and Economy from Helsinki University of Technology.

Picture of Ilkka Paananen

Ilkka Paananen

CEO and Co-Founder, Supercell

Ilkka Paananen is the CEO and co-founder of Supercell, the Finnish mobile games developer behind Clash of Clans, Hay Day, Boom Beach, Clash Royale and Brawl Stars. Founded in 2010, Supercell’s games have been featuring in the global top 10 for years after launch and are played by hundreds of millions of people every month. Supercell is the first European technology start-up to have reached a valuation of $10 billion.

In addition to his role at Supercell, Ilkka helps other entrepreneurs as both an investor and as an active member of the Nordic startup community where he mentors and coaches other founders. Alongside his co-founder Mikko Kodisoja, he has established the We Foundation to fight social inequality and help disadvantaged children in Finland.

Prior to founding Supercell, he was the CEO & co-founder of Finnish games developer Sumea, which was later acquired by Digital Chocolate, where he worked as President until 2010. Ilkka holds a Master of Science degree from the Helsinki University of Technology.

Picture of Tuula Haatainen

Tuula Haatainen

Minister of Employment, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment of Finland

Tuula Haatainen is Finland's Minister of Employment, a long-term parliamentarian and a former municipal director. As a member of the Government, she has served not only the Government of Sanna Marin but also the Governments of Anneli Jäätteenmäki and Matti Vanhanen, serving first as Minister of Education between 2003 and 2005 and later as Minister of Social Affairs and Health between 2005 and 2007.

Minister Haatainen has a master’s degree in political science and she is a qualified nurse.

During her career, she has had numerous governmental, international and NGO confidence activities. She is married and has two adult children.

Episode II

Keynote speakers

Picture of Natalia Nikolaeva

Natalia Nikolaeva

Member Engagement Coordinator, UArctic International Secretariat

Natalia Nikolaeva graduated from the Saint Petersburg State University, Russia, with a Bachelor's degree in linguistics and a specialization in teaching Russian to foreigners. Natalia moved to Finland in 2016 to pursue a Master's degree in Media Education with a minor in English Language Use and Culture with the University of Lapland. Before joining the UArctic team, she worked as a media marketing manager and a news reporter while occasionally collaborating with the University of Lapland for marketing projects. She has also been an ambassador of the university and a tutor for international students.

Picture of Nafisa Yeasmin

Nafisa Yeasmin

Doctor of Social Sciences, Project Manager, Arctic Centre, University of Lapland

Nafisa Yeasmin, Doctor of Social Sciences, is the researcher on International Relations and politics, University of Lapland, Finland. Her main research interest focuses on immigration to the North e.g. sustainable entrepreneurship development, Socio-economic integration of immigrants in the Arctic, Regional development, Community sustainability, Social inclusion, Migration governance. Recent interest in the well-being of immigrant youth and integrated education. She is leading the UArctic Thematic Network on Arctic Migration and the adjunct faculty member at the department of the Law, in the Daffodil International University, Dhaka. She is the Academic of the year 2019.

Episode III

Keynote speakers

Picture of Sirpa Jalkanen

Sirpa Jalkanen

Member of Finnish Academy of Science and Letters, Professor of Immunology, Institute of Biomedicine, University of Turku

Sirpa Jalkanen is an esteemed and award-winning researcher in immunology and an expert in business collaboration in the medical field. After her postdoctoral period at Stanford University, she has worked in different researcher positions at the University of Turku, Finnish National Institute of Health and Welfare as well as the Academy of Finland. Nowadays Jalkanen is an Academian and Professor of Immunology at the Medical Faculty, University of Turku. Additionally, research and development cluster InFLAMES Flagship is led by Jalkanen.

Picture of John Eriksson

John Eriksson

Professor of Cell Biology at the Åbo Akademi University, Director General, Euro-Bioimaging ERIC

John E. Eriksson is Professor of Cell Biology and Director General of Euro-BioImaging ERIC. Eriksson has made key discoveries especially related to intermediate filaments and signaling, coining the concept of intermediate filaments being able to act as signaling organizers and signal modulators. He has been one of the key persons involved in the establishment of Euro-BioImaging and has longstanding experience in a broad range of imaging technologies and infrastructures. He is a member of the Centre of Excellence of Cell Mechanostasis or CellMech at Åbo Akademi University, Turku (2019-24) and an elected member of the Finnish Society of Sciences and Letters and the Technical Science Academy of Finland.

Episode V

Keynote speakers

Picture of Markku Kulmala

Markku Kulmala

Academy professor, Institute for Atmospheric and Earth System Research INAR, University of Helsinki

Academician, prof. Markku Kulmala leads the Institute for Atmospheric and Earth System Research (INAR), University of Helsinki. He is active in international initiatives to improve comprehensive continuous measurement networks all around the world, and to solve air quality – climate change interactions. Kulmala’s research consists of SMEAR (Stations for Measuring the Earth surface – Atmosphere Relationships) field stations and GlobalSMEAR network. Kulmala has published over 1000 original research papers, 18 of which in Nature, 17 in Science and 7 in Physical Review Letters. According to the ISI Web of Knowledge, Kulmala has been 1st in the Citation Rankings in Geosciences (1.5.2011 – 30.4.2018). The total number of citations is over 62000 (from over 20000 different papers). His H-factor is 122.

Prof. Kulmala is the Foreign Member of Chinese Academy of Sciences, and Russian Academy of Sciences. He is a member of 5 other Academies. He acts as a president of European Center of International Eurasian Academy of Sciences. He is winner of many international awards (>10) and has nine honored doctoral degrees / professorships.

Picture of Sasu Tarkoma

Sasu Tarkoma

Professor, Department of Computer Science, University of Helsinki

Professor Sasu Tarkoma is Head of Department at the Department of Computer Science, University of Helsinki and Director of the Helsinki Center for Data Science (HiDATA).  He has authored 4 textbooks and published over 250 scientific articles and 10 granted US Patents; his h-index is 43. He is Fellow of IET and EAI. His research interests are AI and 6G and their applications. His research has received several Best Paper awards and mentions, for example, at IEEE PerCom, ACM CCR, and ACM OSR. He is actively involved in the Helsinki Institute for Information Technology (HIIT), the Finnish Center for AI (FCAI) flagship, Helsinki Center for Data Science (HiDATA), and the Allied ICT Finland network.

His flagship MegaSense research program aims to elevate air quality and environmental monitoring to the next level by providing a real-time and accurate view to the chemical cocktail and the micro climates of mega cities. MegaSense involves a novel hierarchy of distributed air quality sensors, in which more accurate sensors calibrate lower cost sensors. Current low-cost air quality sensors suffer from measurement drift and they have low accuracy. This significant open problem is addressed by a new AI-based calibration scheme. MegaSense integrates with the 5G cellular network and leverages mobile edge computing for sensor management and distributed pollution map creation.

Picture of Reetta Kivelä

Reetta Kivelä

Professor of Practice in Innovation Management and Sustainable Food Chains, Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry, University of Helsinki

Reetta Kivelä has unique experience in both research and the food industry, the integration of the two fields, as well as the innovation chain and she has worked for 15 years at the interface of food science and product development. She has experience from corporations and start-ups. Gold&Green Food Oy, which is known by Kivelä’s invention Pulled Oats, was the first food company she co-founded. Kivelä has broad experience of the Finnish food industry and related positions, ranging from product development to management and marketing, as well as the research sector.

Kivelä’s fields of speciality include the innovation process as well as the development and management of innovations in sustainable food chains. Currently, she divides her time between circular economy -based Nordic Umami Company and the University of Helsinki where she works as a Professor of Practice in Innovation Management and Sustainable Food Chains. She lives as she teaches with a mission to build dynamic food innovation ecosystem and a sustainable food system.

Episode VI

Keynote speakers

Picture of Lauri Järvilehto

Lauri Järvilehto

Professor of Practice, Co-Director of Aalto Ventures Program AVP, Aalto University

Lauri Järvilehto, PhD, is a Professor of Practice at Aalto University and Co-Director of Aalto Ventures Program. He is a serial entrepreneur, philosopher, author, musician and a Sherlock Holmes fan. He is the founder of the Finnish Academy of Philosophy and serves on the Boards of Directors of Unicef Finland and the Finnish Academy of Philosophy. He has written several bestselling books on thinking and learning and is an active public speaker worldwide.

Picture of Ilja Riekki

Ilja Riekki

Head of Innovation and Partnerships, Aalto Ventures Program

Ilja Riekki serves as a Head of Innovation and Partnerships at Aalto Ventures Program, the entrepreneurship program of Aalto University, one of the leading innovation universities in Europe. He’s leading a team responsible of growing entrepreneurial mindset, motivation, and skills within researchers, to accelerate impact and innovations arising from research as well as building a scalable pre-incubation platform to leverage the entrepreneurial and impact potential of extended Aalto community.

Ilja Riekki holds a Master`s degree in education and has been previously working in consulting, trade and exports in Shanghai, education exports and professional trainings at Chinese market in a startup and with food and retail market in Finland. In Aalto University he has been working in a Ministry of Education initiative to create ways to integrate entrepreneurship education to different disciplines and programs and to find the best practices and methods to facilitate learning of entrepreneurial, innovation and design skills within students and educators. Furthermore he`s building a global network of entrepreneurship education providers and stakeholders to develop the future of entrepreneurship education and innovation together.