– Time, results, or physiology?

28  March 2017 Helsinki

The National Museum of Finland / Kansallismuseo
Mannerheimintie 34

People measure themselves in many ways, e.g., using intelligent bracelets. How is this working in a work environment? Quantified Employee 2017 – Time, Results or Physiology is a seminar focused on the different possibilities of tracking work and an employee to develop sustainable productivity. The event is part of the project Re:Know – Revolution of Knowledge Work, and jointly organized by the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health and the Helsinki Institute for Information Technology HIIT.


Seminar materials


08:00 Breakfast (included)
09:00 Opening
09:10 Re:Know Keynote 1:  Global Online Labour Markets, Otto Kässi, Oxford Internet Institute
10:00 Stretching break
10:15  Part 1: Time vs. results
12:00 Lunch (included) and demonstrations
13:20 Re:Know Keynote 2:  Affective computing and its potential role in the improvement of collaboration, Guillaume Chanel, Université de Genève
14:10 Coffee break (snack etc. included)
14:35 Part 2: Physiology and productivity
16:00 Closing words
16:15 Seminar ends


Automation is rapidly expanding from assembly lines to new areas of work: logistics, medical diagnosis and authoring, for example. Regardless of the occupation, the work at which we humans still excel is ever more often cognitive rather than physical, unpredictable rather than well-defined, open-ended rather than fixed, and global rather than local.

Instead of the physical and chemical hazards which used to plague workers, modern professionals struggle with new problems: physical inactivity, uncertainty, interruptions, multitasking, different time zones, an exponentially growing amount of easily available information. The traditional methods of managing tasks, workload or productivity are no longer sufficient.

In the seminar, we will consider the benefits and limitations of tracking three measures of productivity. Working time is the dominant measure of productivity in many industries. On the other hand, from employees we want results, not working time, but how can we define meaningful results for contemporary work – especially in advance? Finally, neither time nor results reveal anything about the most valuable asset of the organizations of today – the knowledge workers’ own state. By sharing signals from their physiology, employees can augment user interfaces, build self-knowledge, improve their health, and support the management of workload.


Re:Know Keynote 1: Dr. Otto Kässi, Oxford Internet Institute, University of Oxford

Global Online Labour Markets

Today’s labour markets are increasingly mediated by the Internet. In addition to service jobs such as hospitality and taxi services, more and more jobs with high skill requirements are such as programming, graphic design and writing are transacted fully digitally. This talk highlights recent work undertaken in the OII on quantifying the size and scope of online labour markets, and potential impacts of increased digitisation of labour markets to companies and workers globally.

About the speaker: Otto’s research concentrates on quantitative study of online labour markets. In particular, he is interested in measuring the growth of online freelancing, and quantifying how various institutional features of online labour platforms affect project outcomes on these platforms. Otto has completed MSc and PhD degrees in economics in the University of Helsinki.

Re:Know Keynote 2: Dr. Guillaume Chanel, Swiss Center for Affective Sciences, University of Geneva

Affective computing and its potential role in the improvement of collaboration

Socio-Affective computing aims at the creation of machines which can take into account emotions and social norms in their interaction with humans. It is often decomposed into two main components: the detection of social signals (including emotions) and the synthesis of those signals. This socio-affective loop between the human and the machine can than lead to a better interaction where machines can show some form of empathy. In this talk I will present how this technology can be employed in remote collaborations to build machines which can help humans to better interact, for instance by helping them to resolve their conflicts. I will discuss several measures and methods that can predict computer users’ emotions and properties of social interactions (e.g. conflict, grounding, etc.). The emphasis will be put on physiological (electrodermal activity, heart rate, etc.) and brain signals (EEG) but some behavioral measures will also be presented. The research will be illustrated with applications toward entertainment and mediated collaboration.

About the speaker: Guillaume Chanel holds a Ph.D. in Computer science, University of Geneva, 2009, where he worked on machine learning for the automatic assessment of emotions based on EEG and peripheral signals. From 2009 to 2010 he was at the KML-Knowledge Media Laboratory, Aalto University, Helsinki, Finland, studying the physiological correlates of social processes taking place between players during video-gaming. Now a senior researcher and lecturer jointly affiliated with CISA and with CVML, his research investigates how machines can learn to behave in a social and affective environment. He is particularly interested in the use of multimodal and physiological measures for improving man-machine and human remote interactions.

Other presentations (more to be confirmed):

Mats Sjöberg, HIIT: Digital Me – Leveraging your digital footprint to track your time

Mats Sjöberg is a computer scientist at the University of Helsinki with a doctoral degree from Aalto University. He works with machine learning applications, especially programming computers to learn to recognize patterns in different kinds of data. Currently his main research focus is on personal data, in particular creating machine learning tools for individuals to manage and understand their digital footprint.

Annina Ropponen, FIOH: Time use in expert work – do we need tracking of working hours 

Annina Ropponen, PhD, PT, works as a senior researcher at the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health, holds a position of adjunct professor of public health in University of Helsinki, Finland and is associated researcher in Division of Insurance Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, Sweden. She has been principal investigator of register studies of work incapacity since 2008 and is the coordinator of Nordic Twin Cohort studies of Disability pensions and Sickness Absence. Since 2013, her primary research interests have been on working hours in knowledge-intensive work, but she has also been involved in projects of shift work, work-life reconciliation and flexibility at work.

Andreas Henelius, FIOH: MIDAS 

Andreas Henelius, M.Sc. (Tech.), is a research engineer at the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health. He is currently finishing his Ph.D. in computer science at Aalto University, focusing on the use of randomisation methods in data mining for exploring the structure of data. He has experience in analysing different biomedical signals and has applied computational methods in the analysis of data, e.g., in the context of sleep research. He has also developed software for data analysis.

Ben Cowley, FIOH: Collaboration and physiology – Pair working in the wild 

Benjamin Ultan Cowley is a specialist researcher at the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health, interested in cognitive neuroscience and psychophysiology of attention. He defended his PhD in Computer Science at the University of Ulster, Northern Ireland, in 2009. Initial post-doctoral projects investigated psychophysiology and learning in serious games at Aalto University, Helsinki. Later at the University of Helsinki’s Cognitive Brain Research Unit, he coordinated a clinical trial on neurofeedback therapy for attentional disorder, and obtained the title of Docent from the Cognitive Science unit, Institute of Behavioural Sciences.

Julia Pietilä, TUT: Health data mining – perspectives on creating new knowledge from large-scale operative data 

Julia Pietilä is doctoral student working in the research group of Personal Health Informatics at Tampere University of Technology. She is interested in gaining insights into health and well-being by applying data science on health-related datasets.

Pauli Komonen, Kopla: Work as the new leisure time 

Pauli is a researcher and a consultant. He helps his clients understand the future societies, markets and ways of life. He works mainly with large Finnish and international companies. He acts in Senior Insight Manager and Trend Specialist roles at Kopla Helsinki Oy. He is also the other founder of the Futures Specialists Helsinki association. Pauli is Master of Social Sciences by training. He made his master’s thesis on the subculture of graffiti painters. Youth cultures, subcultures and countercultures are still close to his heart. Pauli has written a pamphlet on the youth and work: ”Sekava nuoruus: Kuka olen, minne menen?”, published in January by Taloudellinen tiedotustoimisto TAT. He has give expert opinions, for example, for Yle TV1, MTV3, YleX, Helsingin Sanomat, Turun Sanomat and Radio Helsinki. He gives talks regularly in different events.

Alongside work, his passions are music, literature ja physical exercise. He lives with his family in Myyrmäki, Vantaa, Finland.

Juuso Parkkinen, Reaktor: Learnings from company-wide Fitbit experiment

Juuso is a data scientist with expertise is in statistical modelling, data wrangling and information visualisation. He loves uncovering new insights from messy data, especially in healthcare and energy sectors. Lately he has grown a lot of interest in the ethical side of data science and artificial intelligence.

Juuso works as a data scientist at Reaktor. He has a PhD in bioinformatics and statistical machine learning from Aalto University. He has also been actively involved in the open knowledge and MyData community for several years.


Head of Development Teppo Valtonen, FIOH
Senior Research Scientist Kai Puolamäki,  FIOH
Specialist Research Scientist Antti Ukkonen,  FIOH