Wolfgang Wahlster

Wolfgang Wahlster served on ICSI's Board of Trustees until 2022. He was the director and CEO of the German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI) for many years as well as a professor of computer science and computational linguistics at Saarland University. Wahlster has published more than 200 technical papers and 15 books on language technology, intelligent multimodal interfaces, and semantic technologies. His current research includes AI methods for Industrie 4.0, worker assistance systems, digital twins, and architectures for autonomous cars. 

Work Experience

  • Scientific Director and CEO, German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI)
  • Professor, Computer Science, Saarland University, Saarbruecken
  • President of the Society of German Natural Scientists and Physicians (GDNÄ), est. 1822
  • Member of the Board of various IT and VC companies in Germany 
  • Member of the Data Ethics Commission of the German Government 


  • PhD, Computer Science, University of Hamburg, 1981
  • Diploma degree, Computer Science, University of Hamburg, 1977

Awards, Honors and Significant Achievements

  • AAAI Fellow, EurAI Fellow, and GI Fellow 
  • International Joint Conferences on Artificial Intelligence (IJCAI) Donald E. Walker Distinguished Service Award
  • President, International Association for Computational Linguistics (ACL)
  • President, IJCAI Inc.
  • President, European Coordinating Committee for Artificial Intelligence (ECCAI)
  • AAAI Fellow, ECCAI Fellow, and GI Fellow
  • European Information Technology European Prize
  • First AI researcher to receive the Beckhurts Prize
  • German Future Prize awarded by the President of Germany
  • Full Member, German Academy of Sciences and Literature, Mainz
  • Full Member, German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina, Halle
  • Foreign Member, Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, Stockholm
  • Full Member, Leibniz Academy BBAW, Berlin
  • Full Member, German Academy of Engineering, Berlin
  • Honorary Doctorates from the Universitites of Linkoeping, Darmstadt, and Maastricht
  • Federal Cross of Merit, First Class, of the Federal Republic of Germany
  • ICMI Sustained Accomplishment Award of the ACM 
  • Endowed Professorship by the Johannes Gutenberg Foundation, Mainz 
  • Honorary Citizenship of the Hometown Saarbruecken, Germany 

Professor Wahlster's DFKI web page