Workshop Organisers

Anna V. Kononova

Anna V. Kononova is an Assistant Professor at the Leiden Institute of Advanced Computer Science, Leiden University, The Netherlands.

She received her MSc degree in Applied Mathematics from Yaroslavl State University (Russia) in 2004 and PhD degree in Computer Science
from University of Leeds (UK) in 2010. After the total of 5 years of postdoctoral experiences at Technical University Eindhoven (The Netherlands) and Heriot-Watt University (Edinburgh,
UK), Anna has spent a number of years working as a mathematician in industry. Her current research interests include analysis of optimisation algorithms and machine learning.

Niki van Stein

Niki van Stein is an Assistant Professor at the Leiden Institute of Advanced Computer Science, Leiden University, The Netherlands.

She received her PhD degree in Computer Science in 2018, from the Leiden Institute of Advanced Computer Science (LIACS), Leiden University, The Netherlands. From 2018 until 2021 she was a Postdoctoral Researcher at LIACS, Leiden University and she is currently an Assistant Professor at LIACS. Her research interests lie in surrogate-assisted optimisation, surrogate-assisted neural architecture search and explainable AI techniques for industrial applications.

Daniela Zaharie

Daniela Zaharie is a Professor in the Department of Computer Science of the West University of Timișoara (Romania).

She got her PhD degree on a topic related to stochastic modelling of neural networks and an Habilitation thesis on the analysis of the behaviour of differential evolution algorithms. Her current research interests include analysis and applications of metaheuristic algorithms, interpretable machine learning models and data mining.

Fabio Caraffini

Fabio Caraffini is Associate Professor in Artificial Intelligence at Swansea University (UK).

He received the BSc in Electronics Engineering' and the MSc in Telecommunications Engineering’ degrees from the University of Perugia (Italy) in 2008 and 2011 respectively and holds a PhD in Computer Science (De Montfort University, UK, 2014) and a PhD in Mathematical Information Technology (Finland, 2016). His research interests include fundamental and applied computational intelligence with a strong emphasis on metaheuristics for optimisation. Fabio actively contributes to the research community in Computational Intelligence by serving on the programme committee of several conferences and as an associate editor for journals such as Applied Intelligence (Springer) and the International Journal of Intelligent Systems (Wiley).

Thomas Bäck is Professor of Computer Science at the Leiden Institute of Advanced Computer Science, Leiden University, Netherlands, since 2002.

He received his PhD in Computer Science from Dortmund University, Germany, in 1994, and was leader of the Center for Applied Systems Analysis at the Informatik Centrum Dortmund until 2000. Until 2009, Thomas was also CTO of NuTech Solutions, Inc. (Charlotte, NC), where he gained ample experience in solving real-world problems in optimisation and data analytics, by working with global enterprises in the automotive and other industry sectors. Thomas received the IEEE Computational Intelligence Society (CIS) Evolutionary Computation Pioneer Award for his contributions in synthesising evolutionary computation (2015), was elected as a fellow of the International Society of Genetic and Evolutionary Computation (ISGEC) for fundamental contributions to the field (2003), and received the best dissertation award from the “Gesellschaft fur Informatik” in 1995. Thomas has more than 300 publications, as well as two books on evolutionary algorithms: Evolutionary Algorithms in Theory and Practice (1996), Contemporary Evolution Strategies (2013). He is co-editor of the Handbook of Evolutionary Computation and the Handbook of Natural Computing.