The recipient of the 2015 ASU Annual Distinguished Seminar is Prof. Jonathan Blackledge (Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Research at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa).
Title: Energy Trading and Economic Security
Date: Monday 14 December
Place: Abdallah Nass Lecture Theatre
In addition, on 15 December, Prof Blackledge will be holding a Master-Class on “Homeland Security: Research and Development “.
Energy companies require support from market analysis in order to protect themselves against exposure to energy price increases and price uncertainty due to high volatility. This requires energy traders to decide what markets and commodities to trade in, when to open or close trades and how to maximise profits. In turn, energy generators and energy suppliers need support for developing effective bidding strategies, planning operational capacity requirements and establishing appropriate contractual agreements so that governments and national agencies can appreciate what energy policies to implement. This seminar focuses on the application of a new methodology in energy forecasting using a combination of non-Gaussian Stochastic Modelling, Neural Networks and Genetic Algorithms for predicting the long, intermediate and short term behaviour of the energy markets, respectively. The lecture will include a demonstration of some of the algorithms and strategies developed for this purpose for analysing and predicting Oil and Gas prices and for Carbon emissions trading.
Jonathan Blackledge is currently Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Research at the University of KwaZulu-Natal where he is a Full Professor and Honorary Professor of Computer Science in the School of Mathematics, Statistics and Computer Science.
After a career in both academia and industry he was appointed to the Science Foundation Ireland Stokes Professorship in 2008 (named after the famous Nineteenth Century Irish Mathematician and Physicist Sir George Gabriel Stokes) at Dublin Institute of Technology where he has been an Honorary Professor since 2011. During his tenure as Stokes Professor he focused on Innovation and Entrepreneurship leading the commercialisation of a range of research projects and the spin-out of a number of companies in the EU for which he was awarded Researcher of the Year in 2010 and 2011.
Professor Blackledge holds a Bachelor of Science Honours degree in Physics from Imperial College, London University, a Diploma of Imperial College in Plasma Physics, a PhD in Theoretical Physics from King’s College, London University and a Doctorate in Mathematics from Jyvaskyla University, Finland. He has collaborated with a range of teaching and research institutes and universities world-wide throughout his academic career having taught, supervised and undertaken collaborative research projects in countries that include France, Germany, Canada, USA, Russia, Ukraine, India and China. He was appointed Distinguished Professor at the Centre for Advanced Studies, Warsaw University of Technology, Poland, in 2010 and has been Professor Extraordinaire of Computer Science at the University of Western Cape, South Africa, since 2005.
Professor Blackledge has authored and co-authored over 250 research papers and 15 books in the fields of physics, mathematics and engineering, has filed 6 Patents, developed 18 Technologies to License and has been principal supervisor to over 200 completed MSc/MPhil and 56 PhD theses. He holds Fellowships with a number of UK Institutes and Societies including the Institute of Physics, the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications, the British Computer Society and the Royal Statistical Society. In 2007 he was made a Fellow of the City and Guilds London Institute for his contributions to Vocational Education (from 2002-2007) and in the same year was made a Freeman of the City of London.