TSSG PhD student Dixon is DataSci Awards finalist

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Pictured is Dixon

Pictured is Dixon

The DataSci Awards showcase research and the application of Data Science/AI and finalists benefit from being recognised in this growing industry

A PhD student at WIT research centre TSSG has reached the shortlist of the best data science student of the year for the second year running.

Dixon Vimalajeewa was a finalist of the DataSci Awards in 2018 and 2019 under the best data science student of the year category. The awards took place in early September 2019.

Now in their fourth year the Awards demonstrates and celebrates the Power of Data Science and Artificial Intelligence in driving real business, educational and social outcomes.

The competition is open to individuals and teams working in the Data Science Ecosystem across Europe and is a unique opportunity to showcase research and application of Data Science/AI and get recognised in this growing industry.

Reflection of research quality

Congratulating Dixon, Kevin Doolin Director of Innovation in TSSG said “Getting shortlisted for this prestigious award is a great achievement for Dixon, and is a reflection of the superb industry-relevant research work being undertaken in TSSG.”

In 2016 Dixon started a PhD at WIT on the topic of Distributed Learning and Data Processing for Precision, funded by Science Foundation Ireland. His supervisors are Dr Sasi Balasubramaniam (TSSG) and Dr Donagh P. Berry (Teagasc).

He has also had all of his research papers published in highly reputed computer science journals and conferences.

Precision dairy research

Dixon is currently working on the ‘precision dairy’ project, which is a collaboration between Teagasc and TSSG. His current work is a multidisciplinary study, combining big data analysis, information technology and bio-informatics.

“My research work is to develop new learning protocols; learning algorithms and compression techniques, which can efficiently be used in resource constraint analytic platforms such as sensor analytics and also to meet the requirements and applications of the Internet of Things, specifically, large scale farm deployments,” he explains.

Dixon's research route

Here he explains how he got into research. “I was passionate about exploring and practising novel concepts and ideas as a bachelor student in mathematics. I completed my masters in Finland, where I learnt how to practice my knowledge in real-world applications. When I was looking for opportunities to continue my studies further, I got the PhD offer in TSSG, WIT.”

His advice for others considering a future in research is: “I firmly believe that research is the best way to practice our ideas to make them work in reality. This is not only about working alone to achieve the desired goals, but also how we practice working as a group and learn from a broader research community to make our lives and environment better.

“My PhD is helping me build my confidence and ability to work as an independent person to test and practice my knowledge. It also gives me a chance to understand what I am good at as a researcher and even what skills I need to be developed further to be a researcher or move to industry. Besides, presenting my works to a wider community helps to reach different people to share my knowledge and convince the significance of the work I am doing.”

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