Volkswagen Foundation funds new AlgorithmWatch project with planning grant

New project of AlgorithmWatch and TU Braunschweig aims to Bridge the structural competence gap for AI in HR.

Starting in May 2019, Volkswagen Foundation supports a planning project by AlgorithmWatch and Technische Universität Braunschweig that aims to Bridge the structural competence gap for AI in HR. The planning grant is part of the funding initiative Artificial Intelligence and the Society of the Future. In collaboration with the Institute for Mathematical Optimization, the Institute for Information Systems and the Institute for Software Engineering and Automotive Informatics of the TU Braunschweig, we will identify and develop means that will ensure that automated decision-making systems in HR are used with the expertise required.

About the project

Using algorithmic decision making and decision support, in particular, by so-called artificial intelligence in human resource is a prime example of algorithms strongly affecting society as a whole and the everyday life of individuals in highly sensitive areas. Society has developed well-balanced decision processes to ensure labour rights, company interests, and data protection. When introducing algorithmic decisions or decision support in human resource management, the lack of competence for assessing algorithms, in particular, artificial intelligence, leaves these legitimate processes dysfunctional. The competence gap is not the fault of individuals failing to acquire sufficient information. Often the vendors of algorithmic solutions are unable to explain relevant details. Standards and assessment tools are not available. The competence gap is structural.

The project is based on the belief that the legitimate decision processes must not be replaced or bypassed. They must be re-enabled. The goal of the project is to identify and partly develop means to bridge this gap, such as:

  • a catalogue of questions for quality and applicability of algorithms
  • catalogues of competences for users with different levels of involvement
  • benchmarks for quality of algorithms in artificial intelligence
  • end-to-end validation of intelligent systems.

The planning project shall clarify which means can be pursued in a main project, and which additional disciplines are required to achieve these goals.

Project period

May 2019 - April 2020

Project partners

Prof. Dr. Sebastian Stiller
Technische Universität Braunschweig
Institute for Mathematical Optimization

Prof. Dr. Wolf-Tilo Balke
Technische Universität Braunschweig
Carl-Friedrich-Gauß Fakultät
Institute for Information Systems

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Ina Schaefer
Technische Universität Braunschweig
Computer Science
Institute of Software Engineering and Automotive Informatics

Funded by