NRW Academy Welcomes Two New Members from the University of Bonn

Soil scientist Professor Wulf Amelung and computer scientist Professor Stefan Wrobel join its ranks

From left to right: -   Gerd Heusch, Vice President and Secretary for Natural Sc
From left to right: - Gerd Heusch, Vice President and Secretary for Natural Sciences and Medical Science; Wulf Amelung; Stefan Wrobel; and Jochen Kreusel, Vice President and Secretary for Engineering and Economics. Photo: North Rhine-Westphalian Academy of Sciences, Humanities and the Arts/Bettina Engel-Albustin all’images in original size All rights reserved!
The North Rhine-Westphalian Academy of Sciences, Humanities and the Arts welcomed 10 new members at its annual ceremony. The new recruits include two from the University of Bonn: the soil scientist Professor Wulf Amelung and the computer scientist Professor Stefan Wrobel, who is also Director of the Fraunhofer Institute for Intelligent Analysis and Information Systems (IAIS). The four women and six men are united by exceptional research work and creative excellence in their area of expertise.

Restoring degraded soils

Professor Wulf Amelung from the General Soil Science and Soil Ecology group at the University of Bonn’s Institute of Crop Science and Resource Conservation (INRES) is studying how soils degrade and how their properties and functions can be restored to enable sustainable crop production and land use. He and his team are also developing innovative analytical methods in environmental chemistry for identifying humic substances or pollutants in the soil, among other things. Their latest work has focused on incorporating subsoils into sustainable management strategies, because deeper layers of soil have the potential to contribute additional water and nutrient reserves to safeguard crop yields, e.g. during spells of adverse weather.

Researching AI

Machine learning, artificial intelligence and data mining are the main fields of research being explored by Professor Stefan Wrobel from the Institute for Computer Science at the University of Bonn. He also heads up the IAIS and is the Bonn-based director of the Lamarr Institute for Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence. Specifically, he is working on the automated analysis of large volumes of data with the aid of smart algorithms capable of extracting hidden knowledge from the data gathered. This is used to generate models that can help make predictions and decisions. He is also researching algorithms and systems that learn from their experiences and adapt in line with their environment or their users.

About the academy

The North Rhine-Westphalian Academy of Sciences, Humanities and the Arts was established in 1970 and has been the sole academy in Germany to incorporate the arts alongside the sciences since 2008. It only accepts the very best researchers and artists among its members, who engage in scientific and academic dialogue with one another and exchange ideas and opinions with research and cultural institutions in Germany and further afield. Only figures who "have distinguished themselves through scientific or artistic achievements," in the words of its articles of association, are eligible for election. The academy currently has around 280 full and almost 130 corresponding members.