Interdisciplinary College

Interdisciplinary College 2024
Resilience, Robustness, Responsibility
March 1st to March 8th 2024

IK 2024 – Resilience, Robustness, Responsibility

The focus theme for the 2024 Interdisciplinary College will be “Resilience, Robustness, Responsibility.” This year’s IK courses and discussions will address scientific questions regarding complex systems from the ecological to the social and technological, and their ability to persist, adapt, and transform in the face of internal or external change. Example topics include socio-ecological systems facing climate change, humans undergoing personal crises, societies dealing with our rapidly changing world, and technological systems for ever-evolving environments. By including “responsibility”, we hope to engage in questions regarding individual and collective responsibilities that arise from these changes and resulting challenges.

We are looking forward to a number of exciting talks from our four topic areas: Environment and Climate Change, Health and Well-Being, The Individual in Society, and AI and Beyond.

Scientific Chairs

  • Simon Büchner, University College Freiburg
  • Jennifer Fewell, Arizona State University
  • Felix Schmitt, Austrian Academy of Sciences

Christine Harms’ passing

Group picture with Christine Harms (third from the left) with Tarek Besold (left), Dieter Jaeger (second from left) and Luc Steels (right)

While we are looking forward to an inspiring program coming up at IK2024, we have to share some very sad news with you, today. Christine Harms, the chief conference manager of IK for 25 years, passed away on November 2 at the age of 75 after a courageous fight against an unforgiving illness.

Some of you did not have the chance to meet Christine in person, but those of you who did will agree that she was a remarkable person in many ways. Christine was much more than the leading organizer of our spring school, holding the strings of the event together, making sure that everything went smoothly. Christine was the mother of IK, the Grande Dame, and the heart of IK, all at once.  

Bringing together scholars and scientists from a large range of academic fields for an interdisciplinary event in one place for one week can be a bit like herding cats. However, Christine was a people person and with her caring and warmhearted way and manner, she had the gift to include everyone wholeheartedly, no matter whether it was a first-time participant, an established professor or a returning alumna. 

In the last few years, in anticipation of her eventual retirement from the conference management business, Christine has been recruiting and training a team of IK managers and administrative helpers that would ensure the continual smooth backstage operations behind every IK for the years to come. Thanks to this foresight of Christine, the IK2024 will be safely running ‘as planned’. 

It is impossible to express in words how much the many generations of IK participants owe to her. Our deepest sympathies are with her husband and family. We are in deep mourning about her loss and we will find an appropriate way of commemorating her at the event.

Logo artist: Kayson Fahar

The IK is hosted by the Artificial Intelligence Section of the Gesellschaft für Informatik (German Informatics Society)

Logo of the Artificial Intelligence Section of the German Informatics Society

Supporting Institutions

We are proud to be supported by the Volkswagen Foundation.

Logo Volkswagen Foundation

We are also grateful for additional support by the German Society for Cognitive Science.

Logo of the German Society for Cognitive Science (GK)