Oct 22, 2017

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Scientific Committee


Scientific committee in alphabetical order:

Peter Aerts Koh Hosoda Auke Ijspeert Hiroshi Kimura
Roy Ritzmann Josef Schmitz Andre Seyfarth Hartmut Witte

Prof. Peter Aerts

Peter is Professor in Zoology at the University of Antwerp (BE) and currently also chair of the Department of Biology. He studied biology (’76-’80) at the University of Ghent (BE) and continued to work in the same Institution in the context of his Ph.D. Initially he started with investigations on the larval development of fishes , but his main interest was readily drawn towards the functional aspects of the musculo -skeletal system of the adult fish. This finally resulted in a thesis dealing with the mechanics and hydrodynamics of aquatic feeding (‘87). At that time ('86) he also started to work together with the department of Movement and Sport Science of the University of Ghent, where he still has a visiting professorship. After a short post- doctoral period in Ghent he moved in ’89 to the Functional Morphology lab in Antwerp (FunMorph -UA) to become a Research Associate and later Research Director of the FWO-Flanders (Research Fund-Flanders). In 2002 he became head of the FunMorph -lab. Much of the research carried out under his supervision still concerns musculo -skeletal function during feeding and primarily locomotion of vertebrates (fishes, frogs, salamanders, turtles, lizards, apes and humans). Next to scientific management and research, he also teaches courses on ‘General Zoology’, ‘Form & Function’, ‘Embryology’, ‘Functional Morphology of Vertebrates’, ‘Biomechanics’ and ‘Scaling’.

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Prof. Koh Hosoda

Koh Hosoda received his PhD degree in Mechanical Engineering from Kyoto University, Japan, in 1993. From 1993 to 1997, he was a Research Associate of the Mechanical Engineering Department, Osaka University. From 1997 to 2010, he was an Associate Professor of the Graduate School of Engineering, Osaka University. Since 2010, he has been a Professor of the Graduate School of Information Science and Technology, Osaka University. In the meantime, from 1998 to 1999, he was a Guest Professor in the Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, University of Zurich. From 2005 to 2010, he participated in the JST Asada ERATO Project as a Group Leader.

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Prof. Auke Ijspeert

Auke Ijspeert is an associate professor at the EPFL (Lausanne, Switzerland), and head of the Biorobotics Laboratory. He is also Adjunct faculty at the Department of Computer Science at the University of Southern California. He has a "diplôme d’ingénieur" in physics from the EPFL, and a PhD in artificial intelligence from the University of Edinburgh. His research interests are at the intersection between robotics, computational neuroscience, nonlinear dynamical systems, and applied machine learning. He is interested in using numerical simulations and robots to get a better understanding of the sensorimotor coordination in animals, and in using inspiration from biology to design novel types of robots and adaptive controllers (see for instance Ijspeert et al, Science, Vol. 315: 5817, pp. 1416-1420, 2007). With his colleagues, he has received the Best Paper Award at ICRA2002, the Industrial Robot Highly Commended Award at CLAWAR2005, and the Best Paper Award at the IEEE-RAS Humanoids 2007 conference. He was the Technical Program Chair of 5 international conferences (BioADIT2004, SAB2004, AMAM2005, BioADIT2006, LATSIS2006), and has been a program committee member of over 40 conferences. He is also an associate editor for the IEEE Transactions on Robotics. For more information see: http://biorob.epfl.ch

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Prof. Hiroshi Kimura

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Prof. Roy Ritzmann

Roy E. Ritzmann is a Professor in the Department of Biology at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio. He received the B.A. degree in Zoology from the University of Iowa, the Ph.D. in Biology from the University of Virginia then moved to a postdoctoral position at Cornell University where he began working with insects on the neural circuitry underlying escape systems. In 1977 he assumed his position at CWRU where he was promoted eventually to Full Professor in 1992. In 1990 he began to investigate insect locomotion through complex terrain. These studies are grounded in behavioral observations, but also involve electrophysiological recording in a brain region called the central complex. His laboratory focuses on behavioral and neural properties that are involved in insect movement around barriers in complex terrain. The biological principles that are uncovered are used by engineers in the Roger Quinn’s Biorobotics laboratory at CWRU to design and control insect inspired robots. In return, their robots provide hardware models that give us insight into the control of locomotion in the animal.

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Prof. Josef Schmitz

Josef Schmitz is an associate professor at Bielefeld University in the Biological Cybernetics group of the Faculty of Biology. He is also a Responsible Investigator of CITEC (Center of Excellence Cognitive Interaction Technologies) and scientific director of ISBionics within the IIT GmbH (Institute for Innovation Transfer) at the University of Bielefeld. He has studied Chemistry and Biology at the University of Kaiserslautern and received his first degree in Neurophysiology in 1980. After moving to Bielefeld University he received a Ph.D. in Neurobiology (in the group of Holk Cruse) and completed his Habilitation in Zoology. His research is centered on the neurobiology of animal locomotion and he is interested in the intersection between biology, biomechatronics and robotics. He is applying a cross-disciplinary research approach using simulations and robots to get a better understanding of animal locomotion and movement control. He is also using inspiration from biology to design improved types of walking robots and novel locomotion controllers. He has collaborated with several well renowned research groups studying insect, cat, or crayfish locomotion (Keir Pearson, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada; Francois Clarac, CNRS Marseille, France; Sasha Zill, Huntington, USA). He is regularly invited to give talks on these topics in symposia and summer schools, published nearly 100 scientific papers, book chapters and conference contributions, acted as reviewer for several neurobiology and robotics journals, and was a member of two expert boards for the development of VDI-guidelines in ‘Bionic Information Processing’ and ‘Bionic Robots’. As PI he has taken part in several national and international research focus programs in the realm of biologically inspired robotics where he collaborated with engineers in order to design and build bionic robots.

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Prof. André Seyfarth

Andre Seyfarth has studied physics at Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena, Germany, and at the Free University Berlin. He received his Ph.D. degree in 2000 in the Biomechanics Group in Jena. After his postdoctoral studies in Boston (2001–2002) and Zurich (2002–2003), he founded the Lauflabor Locomotion Laboratory in Jena in 2003. Since 2011 he is professor for Sports Biomechanics at the Technische Universität Darmstadt. His research interests comprise dynamics of locomotion on conceptual, simulation, experimental, and robotics level.

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Prof. Hartmut Witte

2008 - 2011 Speaker of Scientific Advisory Board for Biomimetics BIONA at Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung

2007 Election "Ordentliches Mitglied“ of Saxonian Academy of Sciences

2002 Professor and Chair of Biomechatronics at Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Ilmenau University of Technology

2000 Umhabilitation (transfer of Habilitation between Faculties): “Systematic Zoology” at Faculty of Biology and Pharmaceutics, Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena

1998 Habilitation (postdoctoral thesis) “Functional Anatomy / Biomechanics” at Faculty of Medicine, Ruhr-Universität Bochum

1997 - 2001 Research Assistant at Institute of Systematic Zoology, Faculty of Biology and Pharmaceutics, Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena

1995 Medical Qualification: Specialist in Anatomy (“Facharzt für Anatomie”)

1992 Ph.D. (Dr. med., “Summa cum laude”): Faculty of Medicine, Ruhr-Universität Bochum

1992 Governmental Approbation “Arzt” (approved Physician)

1990 - 1997 Research Assistant at Institute of Anatomy, Faculty of Medicine, Ruhr-Universität Bochum

1990 Partial Governmental Approbation “Arzt im Praktikum

1984 - 1990 Studies of Medicine at Ruhr-Universität Bochum

1984 Dipl.-Ing. in Mechanical Engineering, Universität Dortmund

1997 - 1984 Studies of Mechanical Engineering at Universität Dortmund

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