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Philipp Mascherbauer, international researcher at CTIC, tells us about his experience at the Centre

Our 20th anniversary is approaching and in these two decades of CTIC almost 600 professionals have been or are part of our team. Some of these people have chosen our centre for an international stay, as it is the case of the Austrian Philipp Mascherbauer, who has just arrived at CTIC from the Technical University of Vienna to spend four months working with our team in Gijón.

“Gijón es un gran lugar para la investigación”

Philipp met CTIC at a meeting of the European consortium of the Moderate project (Horizon Europe Initiative), which aims to improve energy efficiency in buildings through data analysis. This meeting, which took place at our facilities in Gijón in May, was enough for him to appreciate our working environment, which he defines as "excellent and with a high level of productivity".

His impression is that he found a very pleasant working environment where he felt at ease from the very first moment. A positive opinion that is complemented by what he thinks about Gijón, a city that he considers "a good place to live".

The reason that led him to make the decision to undertake this international stay was to be able to broaden his experience both personally and professionally, two aspects that coexist and intermingle in this type of situation.

Philipp also believes that in Asturias he has the opportunity to learn a lot about his area of specialisation, which focuses on synthetic data, i.e. information that is artificially generated to replace real historical data in order to train Artificial Intelligence models. This type of data is used because real data is insufficient (or of poor quality) and makes it impossible to use it for purposes. The advantage of working with this type of data is that it can be handled at our disposal as there are no privacy issues to circumvent, for example.

One of the disadvantages of working with this type of information is the lack of metadata: they are not associated with actual observations and therefore do not contain metadata that would inform about other characteristics associated with the observations and the recording method.

Regarding the research that Philipp is carrying out during his stay at CTIC, for the Moderate project, our team of data scientists has clustered electricity consumption data to generate a series of indexes that summarise and anonymise the raw data. In this way, 30 variables are considered for each data entry, which allows us to know, among other things, disparities in consumption between weekdays and weekends, the presence of consumption peaks in the modelled users or to categorise a home as a possible holiday home.

Synthetic data are being applied in multiple fields of research, such as genetics, something we are studying as part of AI4ES, a network that aims to be the Spanish benchmark in R&D&I and transfer of Digital Enabling Technologies related to intelligent data processing and analysis, in order to boost the economy based on data and artificial intelligence at national level and position itself as a recognised interlocutor at European level, due to its size and capabilities in these technologies.

“Gijón es un gran lugar para la investigación” 3

CTIC is a national and international leader in Data Economy, where we work with different profiles from different disciplines. In this sense, Philipp values CTIC as a good gateway to the labour market for international students, since our day-to-day work "combines working in an organisation of the highest level and, at the same time, collaborating with the University".

"An international stay is a great opportunity to get to know new people, a new language and a new perspective on many aspects," Philipp recommends. If you are interested in an international stay at CTIC, please contact us and we will evaluate your proposal.