Sebastian Pokutta

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Sebastian Pokutta is the David M. McKenney Family Associate Professor in the Stewart School of Industrial & Systems Engineering at Georgia Tech. He is also the director of the Interactive Optimization and Learning Lab and an Associate Director of the Center for Machine Learning @ GT

Dr. Pokutta's research concentrates on combinatorial optimization and polyhedral combinatorics, and in particular focuses on cutting-plane methods and extended formulations. His industry research interests are in optimization and machine learning in the context of analytics with a focus on real-world applications, both in established industries as well as in emerging technologies. Application areas include but are not limited to supply chain management, finance, cyber-physical systems, and predictive analytics. To date, Dr. Pokutta has successfully deployed analytics methodology in 20+ real-world projects. 

Subsequent to his graduate studies, Pokutta worked as a postdoctoral fellow at the MIT Operations Research Center where the topic of his research was combinatorial optimization and cutting plane procedures. Upon completion of his postdoctoral fellowship at MIT, Pokutta was appointed as an optimization specialist at ILOG where he worked on production planning and supply chain optimization within the steel industry, automotive industry, and energy industry. In early 2008, he joined KDB Krall Demmel Baumgarten in order to set up a quantitative, state-of-the art risk management practice and develop risk management methodologies at top tier banks. He then returned to academia and held the position of a research scientist at the Technische Universität Darmstadt and was visiting lecturer at MIT. Prior to joining Georgia Tech, Pokutta worked as a professor at the University of Erlangen-Nürnberg. 

Dr. Pokutta received both his master's degree in 2003 and his Ph.D. in 2005 in Mathematics from the University of Duisburg-Essen in Germany.

Expertise:
  • Combinatorial Optimization
  • Polyhedral Combinatorics
  • Machine Learning
  • Analytics
  • Optimization
GT Research Areas
Career Award, National Science Foundation 2015
Best paper award at Symposium on Theory of Computing (STOC) for Linear vs. Semide nite Extended Formulations: Exponential Separation and Strong Lower Bounds with S. Fiorini, S. Massar, S. Pokutta, H.R. Tiwary, R. de Wolf 2012
Best paper award at Energy Finance for On clearing coupled day-ahead electricity markets with A. Martin and J. Muller October 2010
Post-doctoral grant from the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) 2006 - 2007
Post-doctoral grant from the German-Israeli Foundation (GIF) 2006
Award for outstanding Ph.D. thesis from the University of Duisburg-Essen 2006