Hasso-Plattner-Institut25 Jahre HPI
Hasso-Plattner-Institut25 Jahre HPI


HPI looks forward to its second Humboldt Professorship: Award for AI expert and lawyer Prof. Sandra Wachter

AI expert Prof. Sandra Wachter has been successfully nominated for a “Humboldt Professorship for Artificial Intelligence 2025” and will teach and research at the joint Digital Engineering Faculty of the Hasso Plattner Institute (HPI) and the University of Potsdam (UP).

Prof. Sandra Wachter

HPI is pleased to announce the successful nomination of Prof. Sandra Wachter for the “Humboldt Professorship for Artificial Intelligence 2025”. The professorship is endowed with 3.5 million euros - making it the most highly endowed international award for research in Germany. It is awarded by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation and funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research.

Prof. Dr. Sandra Wachter has been working at the Oxford Internet Institute at the University of Oxford since 2017 and has been teaching there as Professor of Technology and Regulation since August 2022. Her research has focused on legal and ethical aspects of artificial intelligence, robotics and big data, as well as internet and platform regulation. Prof. Wachter has won numerous awards for her research in this area and has also acted as a policy advisor to governments, companies and non-governmental organizations on ethical and regulatory issues of new technologies. Prof. Wachter's work on Explainable AI - a field of research that aims to make AI decision-making more comprehensible - has been implemented by Google, IBM and Microsoft, among others.

As AI applications become more widespread and commercialized, Prof. Wachter's field of research is becoming increasingly relevant. The more complex and influential AI algorithms become, the more necessary it is to make them transparent and understandable in order to ensure ethical and responsible use.

Prof. Sandra Wachter is the second Humboldt Professor to be appointed to HPI within a short period of time - following health economist Prof. Ariel Dora Stern last year. Prof. Dr. Tobias Friedrich, HPI Managing Director and Dean of the joint Digital Engineering Faculty of HPI and the University of Potsdam: “We are very pleased that we are such an attractive workplace for top international researchers. With Prof. Wachter, we will further expand our research and teaching on artificial intelligence. In this dynamic field, young scientists at HPI in particular will benefit greatly from this."

At HPI, Prof. Wachter would like to especially devote herself to interdisciplinary research in technology law and AI regulation. Topics such as the regulation of generative AI, algorithmic fairness and explainability as well as the ethics of AI play a special role in this regard.

Prof. Sandra Wachter: “It is hard to put into words what an honor it is to be awarded a Humboldt Professorship. I am overwhelmed to receive this research award. And to furthermore be given the opportunity to conduct research and teach at HPI and the University of Potsdam is an incredible privilege! HPI stands for innovation, drive and applied science and I am looking forward to working with the researchers and students."  

Subject to the approval of the university committees and the successful conclusion of the appointment negotiations, Prof. Wachter will come to Potsdam in 2025 to begin her work at HPI.