Fun­da­ment­al re­search for the de­vel­op­ment of the latest gen­er­a­tion of sus­tain­able AI tech­no­lo­gies

The interdisciplinary joint project SAIL (SustAInable Life-cycle of Intelligent Socio-Technical Systems) addresses three major fields: Fundamental research in AI, its societal effects and concrete applications in industry and healthcare. The extensive presence of AI in society poses challenges that the SAIL research network aims to address through a new generation of AI technology.

„The interdisciplinary research network SAIL addresses the next stage of AI development by focussing on the entire life cycle of AI systems and their technological and social impact.”

Prof. Dr. Reinhold Häb-Umbach,
One of the project managers in the SAIL research network from Paderborn

Intelligent socio-technical systems are exposed to a wide variety of environments and conditions throughout their life cycle. By integrating machine learning processes or artificial intelligence (AI) in general at their core, these systems are extremely powerful. However, long-term reliable operation cannot always be guaranteed. This results in high requirements for such AI-based systems with regard to security, robustness and learning capability in the application context. The SAIL project thus aims to reach the next stage of AI development by expanding the previous focus on the purely technical requirements of the introduction phase to the entire life cycle of AI systems. In particular, the technological and social effects are taken into account. The research programme includes fundamental research in the core area of AI as well as two application areas: “Industrial workplaces” and “Adaptive assistance systems in healthcare”. Since 2022, approximately 90 scientists from four research institutions have been investigating various aspects, such as human responsibility in the development and utilisation of AI systems, the resilience and robustness of such systems and the sustainable and efficient design of AI technology. Bielefeld University, Paderborn University, FH Bielefeld University of Applied Sciences and OWL University of Applied Sciences and Arts are cooperating with the long-term goal to establish the SAIL network as a unique international platform for intelligent socio-technical systems in NRW. The Heinz Nixdorf Institute is involved with the “Control Engineering and Mechatronics” workgroup as well as “Secure Software Engineering” workgroup. It contributes its expertise in human-centred intelligent technical systems. In the “Control Engineering and Mechatronics” workgroup, learning processes are investigated in a Human and Hardware in the Loop (HHiL) simulation in order to achieve the best possible immersion of humans in an interactive assistance system through adaptive behaviour. The scientists in the “Secure Software Engineering” workgroup are investigating how future AI systems can be designed in such a way that attacks on the AI can be warded of or at least effectively detected by appropriately secure architectures.

Website of the SAIL research network