Scientific committee


Dr. Julia Schneider

Artificial Intelligence Consultant, Dr. rer.pol. in economics

As a member of the scientific committee, she coordinates all of VDEI's efforts for the acceptance and broad application of exoskeletons in everyday life, the public, politics and science.

Areas of interest:

- Artificial intelligence, data science and data strategy

- Innovation processes with a focus on digitalization, diversity and inclusion, research and development

- Labor economics and health at work

Julia studied economics at the Free University in Berlin, Germany, and Santiago de Chile. After working as a labor market researcher for various years (among others Commission for the First Equality Report of the Federal Government, Munich; Free University of Berlin; Economic and Social Sciences Institute of the Hans Böckler Foundation, Düsseldorf; Department Economics, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, USA; Berlin School of Economics and Law) she participated in the joint Graduate Programme of the Institute for Employment Research (IAB) and the School of Business and Economics of the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg (FAU). She received her doctorate from the Free University for her research on the effects of the 2005 German labor market reforms on welfare recipients` behavior and health. After that, she worked as a postdoctoral researcher on empirical labor and innovation research, with a focus on r&d, diversity and inclusion, labor market conditions/health at work and digitization at IAB, Berlin School for Economics and Law and Stifterverband (joint initiative of companies and foundations, devoted to consulting, networking and promoting improvements in the fields of education, science and innovation) and as senior data strategist at data & analytics company INWT statistics.


Prof. Carmen Constantinescu

Prof. Dr.-Ing, Prof. E.h., MBA, "Digital Manufacturing 4.0" Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Engineering, FhG-IAO

Areas of Interests: 

  • Modeling, simulation, optimization and visualization of products, factories and technical processes along their life cycle.

  • PLM-centered IT infrastructures for product development, process planning and factory life cycle. SOA, GRID and Cloud environments for manufacturing

PhD and ERASMUS Supervisions (GSaME- Graduate School of Excellence advanced Manufacturing Engineering, ERASMUS Office, University of Stuttgart): 2012 – to date, Topics – Adaptable Manufacturing, Digital Factory, Engineering of Meta-Products, Direct Digital Manufacturing

2013, October - Member, High Level Steering Committee of the Let’s 2014 (“Leading Enabling Technologies for Societal challenges”)

2008 – to date: German Engineers Association (VDI), „Digital Factory 4499“ (Expert Groups: Digital Factory, Digital Factory Operation, Data Models and Architectures for Digital Factory, Environment Influences in the Digital Factory), „Modelling and Simulation 3633“, DKE Arbeitsgremium K931 (Deutsche Kommission Elektrotechnik Elektronik Informationstechnik im DIN und VDE)


Rian Whitton

Rian Whitton is a research analyst for ABI Research, a market intelligence company focused on the most transformative technologies and their impact across industrial, commercial and consumer markets. As part of the Strategic Technologies research team, Rian provides an analysis for Robotics, Automation, Intelligent Systems, Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning. He has also written actively on the commercial application of unmanned aerial vehicles. He has been a speaker at numerous events and is on the advisory board for Robo Business, a leading industry event. He regularly contributes to media outlets like Bloomberg, Thompson Reuters, ZDnet, Recode and the Financial Times and has written for the Robot Report.


Prior to his work at ABI Research, Rian graduated in 2017 with a Master’s degree in Science & Security from King’s College London, researching the intersection of technology and defense. He has chaired panels on and spoken at academic events about the intersection of technological innovation and defense, particularly in relation to AI and Robotics.


Prof. Herbert Schuster

Professor Schuster is an internist and medical geneticist. He completed his training at the Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich. From 1984 to 1993, he worked at the University of London´s Charing Cross Research Center. Later thereafter, Schuster was an assistant physician and subsequently, a senior physician at the Medical Polyclinic, University of Munich. From 1994 to 2003, he headed the Genetics of Cardiovascular Diseases Division, a research group at the Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine (MDC). At the same time, Schuster was appointed as senior physician at the Polyclinic of the Franz-Volhard Clinic for cardiovascular disease in Berlin-Buch. In 1997, Schuster was appointed to the rank of Professor of Medicine at the Humboldt University in Berlin. As a member of numerous national and international professional societies, Professor Schuster is actively involved in scientific developments occurring in his field.

His scientific work and current activities address the early detection and prevention of cardiovascular diseases, the commonest cause of death world-wide. Thus, he focuses on risk factors such as metabolic disorders, hypertension, chronic inflammatory diseases, and musculoskeletal disorders. He is equally abreast of advances in genomic technologies as well as life-style interventions.

Professor Schuster founded the Infogen Institute for Health Research and Health Management, a spin-off enterprise from the MDC in 2004. In addition, he conducts a busy private practice, where prevention is a particular focus. In addition to numerous scientific awards, Prof. Schuster received the Kienbaum Service Award in 2001 for the development of new approaches in preventive medicine.