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By Rikke Sternberg, Communications Specialist, SAS Institute


The 2019 Nordic SAS Forums have come to an end after a whirlwind two weeks in which we hosted over 1800 guests at four great locations. We want to thank all of you who attended and share a review of what you saw (or perhaps missed!).



Chasing the hacker in the Data Science Escape RoomChasing the hacker in the Data Science Escape RoomWith several break-out rooms and stages at all four venues, there were plenty of opportunities for discussions, live demos, and practical explanations. In the exhibition areas, there was great excitement about our Data Science Escape Room, in which attendants were challenged to avert a cyber attack. During breaks, guests had a chance to see themselves in caricature drawings by artist Allan Buch. Finally, the Hack in SAS Viya competition made the tour around the Nordics with an exciting culmination in Oslo. Read through to the end to find out who won!


First stop Copenhagen

Besides a multitude of workshops and client presentations, a key theme of the SAS Forum in Copenhagen on March 12 was the many ways in which analytics touches at the most essential parts of our existence as well as how the IT industry can help stay relevant in solving these challenges.

Placed in the beautiful DR Concert Hall and with more than 630 SAS users in attendance, Jacob Knobel opened with a thought-provoking keynote about how to tackle ethical considerations when building solutions with AI. SAS’ own Pasi Helenius spoke about AI and the quest to preserve our environment.


In Stefan Hyttfors’ keynote to end the day, the Swedish futurist built on these themes when he spoke about how technology must be applied to help save humans. He also touched on other economical innovations in our society such as cryptocurrency and defined a generation gap generation regarding trust and disruption. This and a multitude of workshops and cases from customers such as Copenhagen University and Region Southern Denmark helped make SAS Forum Copenhagen a great start to the Nordic odyssey.


The show goes on in Stockholm


Christer Bodell and band in StockholmChrister Bodell and band in StockholmMarch 14 was an exciting day to be at Waterfront in Stockholm. Almost 530 people came to learn, discuss and discover new ideas about machine learning, AI and more. A strong suite of customer presentations garnered great attendance, including ICA Banken, Scandinavian Airlines and Agria.

In the exhibition hall, three demo stations showcased SAS software such as CI360, Visual Analytics and how to work with SAS and open source data.


Finally, we need to thank the great musical entertainment from our own Christer Bodell, who helped make Stockholm Forum a swingin’ success.


Hello to Helsinki
SAS Forum Helsinki in Wanha Satama on March 19 got a fresh start with CEO of the AI Company, Antii Merilehto’s, keynote about moving AI into practice. The room was filled with almost 350 attendees. Customer cases on SAS Viya and SAS Cloud were in focus in several sessions.

It was delightful to see many new faces in the audience. 95 of the attendees were first-timers and the largest group attending from a single organization consisted of 40 people! Many of our partners were present with a booth. Special thanks go to Metacoda – the always smiling Michelle and Paul Homes came all the way from Australia to be with us both in Helsinki and the other Nordic locations.

Finally, the Data Science Escape Room was also very popular in Helsinki and by now, we were confident in calling it a big success. In the evening, it was nice to continue discussions over good food and drinks and nice music.


Grand finale in Oslo


Opening in Oslo with The Royal Bank of Scotland on stageOpening in Oslo with The Royal Bank of Scotland on stageOn March 21, SAS Forum made its final landing of 2019 in Oslo at Sentralen, attracting more than 300 guests. The Norwegian audience also had the pleasure to hear Jacob Knobel keynote about ethical concerns and AI.  


Tackling fraud in both the private and public sector was a theme in two roundtables hosted by the Royal Bank of Scotland and by the Estonian Tax and Customs Board with the participation of speakers from SAS Global Technology Practice.


SAS’ own Sara Armandi showed both here and in Copenhagen how analytics is not just relevant for the global perspective – but also from the home perspective: Sara demonstrated how tracking the sleep, eating and diaper changing patterns of her young child helped her find time for her other passion, football. If you have the curiosity and skill set to explore, data will help you solve many challenges: An example which really shows how working with data is not just what you do but also who you are!



The #HackInSAS winnersThe #HackInSAS winnersWho #hacked it?
An exciting end to an exciting day and a culmination to all four events was last. Popular votes had been cast in every city for the favorite among the 11 competing teams. Finally, the jury decided on not one but two winners for the #HackInSAS competition: EVRY showed how analytics can help you find your next home in a new city, while Knowit demonstrated how analytics including facial recognition can help you find your way home if you are displaced by war or natural disaster. Two great examples of how analytics can help make the world a better place. Congratulations to the winners and thank you to all who voted!


Did you miss out?

Was there a presentation you particularly liked or perhaps one you missed? Find all the 104 presentations here!

Thank you to all and see you again next year!

Look at the FANS program and events for Nordic SAS users! Network meetings, Platform Overview, Ask the Expert webinars, Nordic Newsletter, SAS Analytics Explorers, and campaigns. | #SASFANS #sasnordicusers

Meteorite | Level 14

A great summary - thanks Rikke and for sharing @BeStibolt. We thoroughly enjoyed being a partner at each of the events and sharing the cool SAS Nordic community!

//Contact me to learn how Metacoda software can help keep your SAS platform secure -
Rhodochrosite | Level 12

Thanks @BeStibolt and the rest of the SAS Nordic teams for welcoming us to the SAS Nordic Forums over the last few weeks. It was wonderful to catch up with SAS staff, customers, and partners and hear about how SAS is being used in the region. We have always admired the great SAS community you have in the Nordics with the combination of face-to-face forum events and regular webinars. It is well worth the trip from Australia and we hope to come back again soon.



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