Tuesday, 15 November 2016

Insight's Professor Barry O'Sullivan named Science Foundation Ireland Researcher of the Year 2016

Professor Barry O'Sullivan​ of the Insight Centre for Data Analytics,​
​has been named Science Foundation Ireland Researcher of the Year 2016. This is the second time an Insight director has been awarded researcher of the year since the
​ ​C​entre was established in November 2013.

Prof O'Sullivan is Director of Insight@UCC. His research interests include artificial intelligence, constraint programming, operations research and decision analytics. He was recently elected deputy president of the European Association for Artificial Intelligence (EurAI), the world's largest association for AI. He is a Fellow of the European Association for Artificial Intelligence and a recipient of the international Association for Constraint Programming Distinguished Service Award. In 2015 Silicon Republic recognized him in Ireland's Sci-Tech 100: A galaxy of science and technology stars and as one of 10 experts unlocking the secrets of big data in the information age.

A keen advocate of the ethical application of data science and artificial intelligence research, Professor O'Sullivan heads up Insight's Magna Carta for Data Project. In September, he spoke for the second time at the United Nations Headquarters in New York about artificial intelligence and data analytics in the context of sustainable development.

It has been a good year for O'Sullivan and Insight@UCC with the announcement of a significant industry collaboration with US company United Technologies. The €1.5 million partnership was announced last month.

Insight's CEO Oliver Daniels welcomed the announcement saying, "It's an extraordinary achievement for Insight with two of its researchers being recognised in this way. We are producing research of real note and value academically, and this accolade will certainly increase our attractiveness to industry which is so important in today's research environment, and it will also help in attracting the best and brightest researchers to our Centre. I would like to extend my warmest congratulations to Barry and his team in Insight@UCC."

UCC's Vice President for Reserch and Innovation, Professor Anita Maguire said, "Prof Barry O’Sullivan is clearly a thought leader in his field internationally, as evidenced by external recognition in multiple prestigious fora; we are delighted to see his excellence, commitment and contribution nationally and globally recognis​ed and honoured by this award." This is the fifth time a researcher associated with University College Cork has been recognised in this way.

O'Sullivan has three children and is a very keen gardener, cook and musician. He has played tenor saxophone and guitar with several Irish jazz greats over the years. Born and raised in the village of Carrigtwohill in County Cork. He was educated at St. Mary's Boys'National School in Carrigtwohill, St. Colman's Community College in Midleton, the University of Limerick, and University College Cork. He lives in Midleton in East Cork with his wife, Linda, and their three children. Science and mathematics have always played a significant role in his life. In fact, he and Linda met when they were both participating in the 1990 Young Scientists' Exhibition.