Thursday, February 28, 2019


Kim G. Larsen asked me to distribute this call for a very attractive associate professorship at Aalborg University. I trust that this might be of interest to some of the readers of this blog.


At the Technical Faculty of IT and Design, Department of Computer Science, an Associate Professorship in Computer Science is open for appointment starting August 1, 2019 or soon thereafter. The position is enabled by a generous grant from the Poul Due Jensen Foundation and supports the focus areas “Internet of Things and Cyber-Physical Systems”.
JOB DESCRIPTIONThe objective of the position is to strengthen the department’s activities in the broad range from theory to applications in the area of distributed, embedded, and intelligent systems. Here, current research and teaching span topics such as semantic theories; algorithms and tools for verification and validation; model-driven development, analysis and optimization; and probabilistic models and algorithms for decision making and machine learning.
The position includes funding to recruit an assistant researcher within the research field of the successful applicant. The assistant researcher position is for four man-years and is also funded by the Poul Due Jensen Foundation.
We are seeking ambitious and talented applicants aiming at forming their own research group. Both the Foundation and the Technical Faculty will support the successful applicant with guidance on research and funding strategies etc. in the pursuit of a Full Professorship.
The formal announcement including information about qualification requirements may be found at
You may obtain further professional information from Professor Kim Guldstrand Larsen, phone +4522171159,          email:
The Department of Computer Science at Aalborg University is ranked #1 in Denmark according to the Leiden Ranking.
The research at the department features a broad range of synergistic activities within research and education in the general area of computer science, including curiosity-driven research and targeted research in collaboration with industrial partners, as well as traditional university education, with a unique problem- and project-based focus, and continued education and knowledge dissemination. For more information

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Call for Prize Nominations: Prize for Innovation in Distributed Computing 2020

Michele Flammini asked me to distrbute this call for nominations. Sharpen your pencils and nominate one of the many worthy candidates from the SIROCCO community!

Call for Prize Nominations:
Prize for Innovation in Distributed Computing 2020

Awarded by the Colloquium on Structural Information and Communication Complexity (SIROCCO).

Deadline for nominations: April 30, 2019.

Nominations are requested for the Prize for Innovation In Distributed Computing. This prize was established to recognize individuals whose research contributions expanded the collective investigative horizon in SIROCCO's area of interest. That is, they formulated new problems, or identified new research areas, that were at the time of their introduction, unorthodox and outside the mainstream, but later attracted the interest of the SIROCCO community.

This community is interested in the relationships between information and efficiency in decentralized computing. The prize recognizes originality, innovation, and creativity -- the qualities that reflect the spirit of the SIROCCO conference.

The winner of the Prize for Innovation in Distributed Computing 2020 is expected to give an invited talk at SIROCCO 2020. The winner of the 2019 edition of the prize (Paola Flocchini) will give a talk at SIROCCO 2019 which is going to be held on July 1-4, in L’Aquila, Italy.

Past prize winners are Nicola Santoro, Jean-Claude Bermond, David Peleg, Roger Wattenhofer, Andrzej Pelc, Pierre Fraigniaud, Michel Raynal, Masafumi Yamashita, Shmuel Zaks,  Zvi Lotker and Paola Flocchini.

The prize may not necessarily be awarded every year.


The following conditions must be met by the nominees to be eligible for the prize. It is requested that a nomination letter explains and demonstrates how the nominee matches these conditions.

(1) The original innovative contribution was introduced by the nominee(s) for the first time in a publication at least five years before the nomination deadline, and the publication must have appeared in a conference proceedings or a scientific journal.

(2) At least one paper (co)authored by the nominee(s), either the original
paper, or a paper closely related to the innovative contribution, must have
appeared in a SIROCCO proceedings.

A nomination letter should identify the paper(s) that make(s) the nominee eligible according to conditions (1) and (2) above, as well as explain the contribution, its originality, and its significance.

Past SIROCCO papers and authors can be found at indexing sites, e.g. Google Scholar or

Selection process

The prize winners are selected by the Award Committee composed of the current Steering Committee (SC) Chair of the SIROCCO conference, the PC chairs, including co-chairs, of the three SIROCCO conferences immediately preceding the nominations deadline, plus one additional member of the Advisory Board, or one past winner, selected by the Steering Committee for the current year.

The Award Committee of the Prize for Innovation in Distributed Computing 2020 consists of: Shantanu Das (Aix-Marseille Université),
Zvi Lotker (Ben Gurion University of the Negev), Boaz Patt-Shamir (Tel Aviv University), Andrzej Pelc - chair (Université du Québec en Outaouais), Michel Raynal (IRISA), Jukka Suomela (Aalto University) and Sébastien Tixeuil (Sorbonne Université).

Nominations can be made by any member of the scientific community.

DEADLINE : The deadline for nominations is April 30, 2019.
Please send the nomination to the prize committee chair, Andrzej Pelc, by e-mail

Monday, February 18, 2019

Three questions to three junior female computer scientists for the International Day of Women in Science

Last Monday, 11 February, was the International Day of Women in Science. I planned to post the answers I received from three junior female computer scientists to three questions I asked them. However, being a computer scientist who is short of time like everyone else, I asked for a one-week deadline extension to do so.

The questions were
  1. When did you become interested in science?
  2. Why did you choose computer science?
  3. Which advice would you give to a high-school student who is thinking about pursuing a career in science?  
Here are the (unedited) answers in the order in which I received them, in case they might be of interest to (female) students of all ages. I have anonymized the answers as the message is more important than the messengers.

Colleague #1

  1. I never had a sentence like "I am interested in science" in my mind, it was just that I always in one way or another enjoyed learning about things, school and education, and I wanted to continue being in that type of surroundings after graduating from university. 
  2. I actually studied mathematics, I was not interested in computer science. I had some algorithms and programming classes during my studies, which I found cute but not much more than that. I started being seriously interested in computer science only when I took a class on mathematical theory of computation. This class combined the mathematical/theoretical/
    philosophical approach I liked so much with (for me) a new and refreshing set of questions.
  3. Try it and see how it goes.
Colleague #2

  1. My interest in science started when visiting the SMAU that is an event where companies, investors and startups aim to promote the Made in Italy Research and Innovation. It was simply amazing to learn about startups, laboratories, research centres, universities and small companies showing so many novel ideas and technologies in one day, it really impressed me a lot. 
  2. Computer science was the alternative to Math (my preferred subject at the scientific high school) but I thought it was too abstract and full of theories, demonstrations and proofs, maybe too much. Computer science has the theoretical part that is fascinating but it also has some more practical implications, it is somehow more concrete, and I like both sides. 
  3. Don't be afraid to fail, be afraid not to try. I think it is worthwhile to try if you have any inclination to science because you are exposed to problem solving reasoning, and these efforts can be helpful for building a better society.
Colleague #3

  1. From the junior secondary school, scientific subjects were my favorites, together with history.
  2. During the high school, I started to study computer science and also laboratory of computer science where it was applied to other subjects such as Math and Business Economics. I was really passionate of this subject, which was among my favorite. When it was time to choose for the University, computer science was naturally the first in the list. I also had other alternatives but in the end I quickly decided to apply for computer science.
  3. My advice is simply to do whatever he/she really likes and for which he/she is good and has obtained good results, without thinking too much about work opportunities or what other people (e.g., parents) want for them. For each career, in science or not, passion is the main ingredient to reach good results. Then, I also think that one can change his/her mind and do something completely different after the university. The important is to study what one really likes.

Tuesday, February 05, 2019

Two awards at HICSS’19 for CS@GSSI student Roberto Verdecchia

Roberto Verdecchia, a third-year Ph.D. student of the Gran Sasso Science Institute (GSSI) and the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (VU) has received two distinct prizes at the 52nd Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences (HICSS’19; for his research paper “DecidArch: Playing Cards as Software Architects”, which is co-authored with Patricia Lago, Jia F. Cai (both at VU Amsterdam), Remco C. de Boer (ArchiXL) and Philippe Kruchten (University of British Columbia). Out of over 780 papers presented at HICCS within 11 different research tracks, the study was presented with the “Best Paper award” of the Software Education and Training track. Additionally, the article was also selected as one of the five “ISSIP-IBM-CBA Student Paper Award for Best Industry Studies Paper” of HICCS’19.

The study presents a novel educational game conceived to train students and practitioners in concepts related to software architecture and decision making. The game is currently used as an interactive session of the course “Software Architecture”, taught at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.

The two prizes were adjudicated independently by two distinct committees.
Congratulations to Roberto!

Let me close by adding that I expect that Roberto will deliver his PhD thesis in the autumn 2019 and will soon be on the job market. If you have a postdoc or tenure-track  position in SE, keep him mind.