Knowledge sparks visions.

10. August 2018
ca. 2 Minutes

In 1969, when Apollo 11 landed on the moon, the impossible became possible. Today, the BMW Group is about to realise another dream: the dream of autonomous driving. The same principle still applies: Without the knowhow and innovative spirit of scientists, engineers and developers, milestones like these would not be possible. For this reason, the BMW Group, with many other supporters, has founded the BMW Summer School to promote the exchange of innovative ideas among young scientists.

At this year’s BMW Summer School from 29 July to 3 August, 34 doctoral students from 18 different countries came together to discuss the latest trends, visions and challenges in the field of Emotion-Aware Vehicle Assistants (EVA). The participants came from a wide range of different disciplines, from information technology to mechanical and electrical engineering to mathematics. This breadth of knowledge provided the ideal conditions for interdisciplinary exchange with experts.

The BMW Summer School 2018 kicked off its “Keynote Track” with prestigious guest speakers, including Alexander Zadorojniy from the IBM Research Lab Haifa and Mohammed Ezz from Affectiva, talking to attendees about their ideas on the issue. Afterwards, breakout sessions in smaller groups discussed core areas, such as machine-learning methods and intelligent mobility services. These increasingly crucial topics are among the main building blocks for the future of mobility – especially when it comes to developments like autonomous driving and providing smart services to meet individual mobility needs.


On the “Poster Track”, postgraduates presented research projects they had submitted earlier. This year, Francesco Walker from the University of Twente in the Netherlands impressed the scientific committee with his research paper into the benefits of expanded peripersonal space for automated driving.  

Another important item on the agenda was the “Lean Start-up Machine”, where young researchers used agile start-up work methods to develop innovative new ideas in mixed groups of five. The results were presented to the public in a competitive pitch format after the session. 

The BMW Summer School 2018 provided experts with a valuable opportunity to share their ideas with motivated young talents and discuss projects, innovations and new concepts for the future. 

We are already looking forward to the next BMW Summer School, which will take place from 14 - 19 July 2019. The topic for discussion will be the social and economic benefits of big data and artificial intelligence in the context of urban mobility.

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