Professor Bo Friis Nielsen, Technical University of Denmark

Inaugural lecture by Bo Friis Nielsen: Ubiquitous probability

The Technical University of Denmark is happy to welcome Bo Friis Nielsen as professor in Applied Probability in Engineering Science.

In celebraton of the appointment DTU Compute invites you to attend Bo Friis Nielsen’s inaugural lecture followed by a reception, Friday, 3rd March at 3 pm, building 101, 1st floor, room 1, Technical University of Denmark, Anker Englundsvej 101a, 2800 Kongens Lyngby.


  • 3.00 pm Welcome by Professor, interim Head of Department Bjarne Kjær Ersbøll
  • 3.10 - 3.50 pm Inaugural lecture by Bo Friis Nielsen titled ”Ubiquitous probability”
  • 4.00 - 5.00 pm Reception

Yours sincerely,
Bjarne Kjær Ersbøll, Professor, interim Head of Department, DTU Compute.

Abstract Inaugural lecture

The understanding and handling of randomness is of increasing importance throughout society due to ceaseless data generation by digital giants and governments alike. This vast amount of data calls for novel approaches to harvest the knowledge contained in the enormous and increasingly fast growing body of digital information.

The field of theoretical probability only recently found its formal footing in the mid-20th century and some might wonder whether its best days are already over. On the contrary, as randomness and variation permeates the cascades of digital data flow, the new challenges require engineers and data scientists to have a thorough understanding and deft mastering of fundamental aspects of probability. So now more than ever a foundation in probability theory is a core skill for future engineers of the developing digital society.

In the talk I will give a cursory description of the history of probability theory with an emphasis on some basic yet not necessarily trivial examples of every day phenomena that can be better understood through a proper theoretical framing.

In the second half of the talk I will give some examples of probabilistic modelling in engineering science taken from some recent applications I have participated in. These examples span from pure combinatorial probability made in cooperation with the Danish lotteries, over an exponential model for risk of flooding in the Copenhagen area, and an individual based model for the risk of getting cancer from the intake of barbecued meat to studies of train delays with the objective of making better coordination of public transportation systems in Denmark.


Fri 03 Mar 17


DTU Compute



Technical University of Denmark, Anker Englundsvej 101a, building 101, 1st floor, room 1

Files for download