Tracie Farrell successfully passed her PhD viva on Friday August 3rd.
Prof. Enrico Motta is Professor in Knowledge Technologies and Former Director (2000 -2007) of the Knowledge Media Institute (KMi) at the Open University in UK. Prof. Motta has a Laurea in Computer Science from the University of Pisa in Italy and a PhD in Artificial Intelligence from the Open University.
His research spans a variety of aspects at the intersection of large-scale data integration and modelling, semantic and language technologies, intelligent systems, and human-computer interaction. In particular much of his current work focuses on developing innovative approaches that integrate statistical methods with semantic and language technologies, to develop new solutions which support users in making sense of large scale data and in complex decision-making scenarios.
Over the years, Prof. Motta has led KMi's contribution to numerous high-profile projects, receiving over £10.4M in external funding since 2000 from a variety of institutional funding bodies and commercial organizations.
In particular he was the Director of the flagship £17.2M HEFCE-funded MK:Smart initiative, which was completed in June 2017. The award-winning MK:Smart project is an example of a 'smart city' project, one which has developed intelligent systems and analytics infrastructures to foster sustainable urban growth in Milton Keynes. Central to the project is the MK Data Hub, a computational infrastructure that supports the acquisition and management of vast amounts of data relevant to city systems from a variety of sources. Taking advantage of the sophisticated data management capability provided by the MK Data Hub, MK:Smart has realised innovative actions in transport, energy and water management, as well as ambitious business and community engagement activities, and educational ones.
Building on MK:Smart, Prof Motta is currently collaborating with MK Council and other partners in the MK Innovation Cluster to develop new large scale solutions tackling urban challenges and sustainability issues in Milton Keynes and the wider region. He is also leading the CityLabs project, whose aim is to stimulate innovation in SMEs in the SEMLEP region, through the deployment in the region of a novel innovation transfer programme, which integrates both business and technology aspects and focuses on intensive one-to-one transfer of know-how.
Prof Motta is also currently working on an innovative solutions for scholarly analytics - see http://skm.kmi.open.ac.uk, which leverage novel techniques in large-scale data mining, semantic technologies and visual analytics to support users in understanding the dynamics of the academic communities. This work has attracted extensive interest from both academia and the industrial sector, leading to funding from the top two international academic publishers, Elsevier and Springer Nature, as well as collaborations with a variety of universities, including Tokyo, Bonn, Oxford, Bergen, Pittsburgh, Udine, Amsterdam, Aquila, Ohio State, and Vienna. In particular, the collaboration with Springer Nature has resulted in the creation of Smart Topic Miner, a system which is now routinely used within Springer Nature to assist editors in classifying conference proceedings by automatically generating the correct metadata for them.
Prof. Motta has acted as advisor on strategic research programmes to several national and international organizations in a variety of countries, including UK, US, The Netherlands, Austria, Finland, and Estonia.
He is also Editor in Chief of the International Journal of Human Computer Studies, which is ranked as one of the top international journals in HCI by both Google Scholar and Microsoft Academic Search. In 2003 he founded the ground-breaking European Summer School on Ontological Engineering and the Semantic Web (SSSW), which provided the main international postgraduate forum for learning about semantic technologies until its final edition in 2016. The innovative pedagogic model pioneered in the SSSW series of summer schools has since been adopted by several other similar initiatives.
Prof. Motta is the author of over 300 refereed publications. These include the book, Reusable Components for Knowledge Modelling, which is published by IOS Press. His h-index is 66, a figure that positions him among the top computer scientists in the world in terms of academic impact. Together with Tom Heath he won the Semantic Web Challenge at the 2007 International Semantic Web Conference and, in collaboration with members of his research group, he won the best paper award at the 2008 and 2009 Asian Semantic Web Conferences.
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