Founding Members

CISPA Helmholtz Center for Information Security (DE)

CISPA Helmholtz Center for Information Security is a German national Big Science Institution within the Helmholtz Association that provides a comprehensive and holistic treatment of the pressing grand Cybersecurity and Privacy research challenges that our society faces in the age of digitalization (ranked #1 in security on

Mario Fritz [Coordinator] is faculty member at CISPA, honorary professor at Saarland University, ELLIS Fellow, associate editor of TPAMI, a leading scientist of the Helmholtz Medical Security Privacy and AI Research Center (HMSP), and coordinating the Trustworthy Federated Data Analytics project.

Thorsten Holz is faculty member at CISPA, received the Heinz Maier-Leibnitz Prize from the German Research Foundation (DFG) and in 2014 an ERC Starting Grant. In 2022, he received an ERC Consolidator Grant in the area of software security.

University of Helsinki (FI)

University of Helsinki is the leading research university in Finland. Together with Aalto University, it forms the foundation for Finnish Center for Artificial Intelligence FCAI, a national flagship of research selected as a center of excellence with societal impact, and ELLIS Unit Helsinki.

Antti Honkela is an Associate Professor of Machine Learning and AI at the University of Helsinki. He leads the Research Programme in Privacy-preserving and Secure AI at FCAI, and serves as an Area Chair at NeurIPS, ICML and AISTATS as well as an action editor at JMLR.

KTH Royal Institute of Technology (SE)

KTH Royal Institute of Technology is a leading Nordic Technical University conducting research in a broad area of technical sciences, architecture and industrial management. Significant part of the AI research is supported by the 12 year national initiative Wallenberg AI, Autonomous Systems and Software Program.

Danica Kragic is a Professor of Computer Science at KTH Stockholm and ELLIS Fellow. She received an IEEE Robotics and Automation Society Early Career award, ERC Consolidator and ERC Advanced grant. She is a member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences and Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences.

Computer Vision Center (ES)

The Computer Vision Center (CVC-CERCA) is a non-profit research institution in Barcelona, Spain. It comprises >130 researchers and technical staff. It performs exciting and pioneering research in various Computer Vision areas and has a long track record of technology transfer. The CVC has created 13 spin-off companies and currently hosts 55 PhD candidates. It was ranked in the top-100 government research institutions worldwide in the 2021 Scimago Institutions

Dimosthenis Karatzas is associate director of the Computer Vision Center, Barcelona. He received the 2013 IAPR/ICDAR Young Investigator Award, a Google Research Award and an Amazon Machine Learning Research Award. In 2019 he ranked in the top 1.5% of the world's most influential scientists in AI. He has created two spin-off companies. He is an IEEE senior member, and a member of IAPR and ELLIS.

Josep Lladós is the director of the Computer Vision Center, Barcelona. He is in the field of Document Intelligence, with more than 260 papers (40 in indexed journals), 17 PhD theses supervised, and led more than 35 public and private projects. He founded the company Icar Vision Systems in 2002 (now in the Mitek group). He received the 2007 IAPR/ICDAR Young Investigator Award, and he is chair holder of the UAB/Santander KT Transfer. He is a member of the Spanish and Catalan AI strategy task force.

Italian Institute of Technology (IT)

Italian Institute of Technology is the largest private research center in Italy, conducting research over four domains: Robotics, Nanomaterials, Technologies for Life Science, and Computational Sciences. Particularly relevant to the present proposal is IIT expertise on machine learning theory and algorithms.

Massimiliano Pontil is P.I. of the Computational Statistics and Machine Learning research line at IIT, Part-time professor at University College London, ELLIS Fellow and Director of ELLIS Unit Genoa (together with Lorenzo Rosasco), a joint effort of IIT and University of Genoa. He received a best paper runner up at ICML (FR)

Valeo is an automotive supplier, partner to all automakers worldwide. Its Comfort and Driving Assistance is leading the development of research projects and innovative solutions in the fields of Advanced Driving Assistance Systems, Automated Driving, User Experience, Telematics and Digital services.

Patrick Pérez is Scientific Director of, a Valeo research lab on artificial intelligence for automotive applications. Before, he was Distinguished Scientist at Technicolor (2009-2918), researcher at Inria (1993-2000, 2004-2009) and at Microsoft Research Cambridge (2000-2004). His research revolves around machine learning for scene understanding.

University of Modena and Reggio Emilia (IT)

University of Modena and Reggio Emilia was established in 1175 and is the third oldest University in Europe. UNIMORE participates in the project with the Engineering Dept. "Enzo Ferrari” (DIEF) and with the AImageLab group, a research laboratory focused on Artificial Intelligence, Computer Vision, Multimedia and Deep Learning, established as a unit in the ELLIS network.

Rita Cucchiara is Full Professor and leads the AImageLab and is Director of AI research and Innovation Center and the ELLIS unit of Modena. She has been Director of CINI AIIS Lab (2018-21) and coordinates the Italian Board for the National Research Plan PNR 2021-27. She is a member of the Advisory Board of the Computer Vision Foundation. Fellow ELLIS and IAPR, she has been PI of many EU and National projects and will be GC of ECCV2022, ACM MM2024 and PC of CVPR 20204. She has been AC AC of top-level AI conferences, including ECCV, ICCV, NeurIPS, CVPR, ECAI, ACM MM, ICPR..

National Interuniversity Consortium for Informatics (IT)

National Interuniversity Consortium for Informatics is the main point of reference for the Italian national academic research in the fields of Computer Science, Computer Engineering, and Information Technology. It involves 1,300+ professors of both Computer Science and Computer Engineering affiliated to 39 Italian public universities. CINI joins ELSA with its affiliated units (University of Cagliari, University of Genoa, University of Milano, and Polytechnic University of Turin), bringing their leading expertise in developing safe, secure, and privacy-preserving AI techniques in the context of real-world applications.

University of Cagliari (IT)

University of Cagliari, founded in 1620, is a medium-sized university in Italy, with 25,000 students, 1000 professors and 1000 administrative staff. It consists of 6 faculties, 15 departments, 1 university hospital, and offers more than 100 among undergraduate, graduate and postgraduate programmes. Within Horizon 2020, UniCa has been granted 36 projects with a total funding of about 9 million euro. UniCa is also active in the Joint Technology Initiatives (JTI) and in the Joint Programming Initiatives (JPI) with a total of 12 projects and a total funding of about 1,5 million euro.

University of Genoa (IT)

University of Genoa founded in 1481, is one of the largest universities in Italy, counting approximately 35,000 students, 1,400 teaching and research staff and about 1,300 administrative staff. The DIBRIS department was established in the Polytechnic School of the University of Genoa in 2012, after the fusion of Computer Engineering and Computer Science departments.

University of Milano (IT)

University of Milano, whose priority is to contribute to society by conducting research at top international standards, is the only Italian member of the prestigious League of European Research Universities (LERU). The CS department is the largest in the country and is heavily involved with several research and educational initiatives in AI.

Polytechnic University of Turin (IT)

Polytechnic University of Turin is the oldest technical university in Italy, leader in technical-scientific education and research. It is recognized for its records in technology transfer and long lasting relations with local industries and international companies. Within the Horizon 2020, PoliTO is involved in 199 different actions (of which 47 coordinated) with an EU contribution of 76 million Euro. It is also a partner of 3 EIT (European Institute of Innovation & Technology) communities (Inno Energy, EIT Digital and EIT Manufacturing) and hosts 14 ERC grant winners.

Fabio Roli is Head of the AI working group at CINI, Full Professor of Computer Engineering at the University of Genoa, founding Director of the Pattern Recognition and Applications Lab at the University of Cagliari, and co-founder of the spinoff company Pluribus One. University of Genoa, where he leads the Pattern Recognition and Applications Lab, and co-founder of the spinoff company Pluribus One. He has been the PI of dozens of R&D projects, including the leading EU projects CyberRoad and ILLBuster on AI for computer security. He is Fellow of the IEEE and of the IAPR, and recipient of the Pierre Devijver Award. He was a member of the NATO Science for Peace and Security advisory panel.

Battista Biggio is Assistant Professor at the University of Cagliari, and co-founder of the spinoff company Pluribus One. He has provided pioneering contributions in the area of AI/ML security, managing six R&D projects on this topic. He is Associate Editor of Pattern Recognition, and regularly serves in the program committees of ICLR, ICML, NeurIPS, IEEE SP, USENIX Sec. He is a senior member of the IEEE and ACM, and a member of IAPR and ELLIS.

Luca Oneto is Associate Professor at the University of Genoa. He has the Italian national qualification for the role of Full Professor. He is a co-founder of the spin-off ZenaByte s.r.l. He has been involved in several H2020 projects (S2RJU, ICT, DS) and he has been awarded with the Amazon AWS Machine Learning and Somalvico (best Italian young AI researcher) Awards.

Davide Anguita is Full Professor in Computer Engineering at the University of Genoa. He is an IEEE Senior Member. He was member of the European Community Networks of Excellence NeuroNet I and NeuroNet 2, Chair of the Smart Adaptive Systems section of the EC NoE EUNITE and Chair of the Focus Group "Data Technologies" of the EC Concerted Action NiSIS.

Nicolò Cesa-Bianchi is professor of Computer Science at the University of Milan, Italy and ELLIS Fellow. He served as President of the Association for Computational Learning and co-chaired the program committees of some of the most important machine learning conferences, including NeurIPS, COLT, and ALT. He is the recipient of a Google Research Award, a Xerox Foundation Award, a Criteo Faculty Award, a Google Focused Award, and an IBM Research Award.

Barbara Caputo is full professor at Polytechnic University of Turin, director of the Hub AI@PoliTo, and coordinator of the Italian National PhD on AI for Industry 4.0. She is an ERC Laureate, co-founder of the ELLIS society, ELLIS Fellow and board member, member of the GPAI working group on Innovation and Commercialization. In 2021 she received an honorary PhD from the University of Southern Denmark for her work on lifelong learning. Since 2017 she has been collaborating with the Italian Government as a leading expert for the AI National Strategy.

Max Planck Society (DE)

The Max Planck Society is a world-leading science and technology research organization. The Max Planck Institute for Informatics performs cutting-edge research on robustness and interpretability of machine learning and computer vision models with an emphasis on real-world applications such as autonomous driving.

Bernt Schiele is Max Planck Director at MPI for Informatics, Professor at Saarland University, Associate Editor in Chief of TPAMI, Fellow of IEEE, Fellow of IAPR, ELLIS Fellow, Member of German National Academy of Natural Sciences Leopoldina. He is known for his work in the field of computer vision and perceptual computing.

Dengxin Dai is Research Group Leader at MPI for Informatics, external Lecturer at ETH Zurich, ELLIS Member, Guest Editor of IJCV and Area Chair of CVPR. His research focuses on robustness of machine perception models against adverse weather/lighting conditions and unknown domain changes.

National Institute for Research in Computer Science and Automation (FR)

National Institute for Research in Computer Science and Automation is a French public research body dedicated to computational sciences. It is a primary contact point for the French Government on digital matters. Jointly supervised by the French ministries for research and industry, Inria's missions are to produce outstanding research and to ensure the impact of this research on the economy and society.

Catuscia Palamidessi is a Director of Research at Inria, where she leads the research team COMETE, which currently counts 15 people, and which focuses on Privacy, Security, Machine Learning and Concurrency. She received an ERC Advanced Grant (2019-24). She is in the Editorial Board of various journals including the IEEE TPDP and Acta Informatica.

European Molecular Biology Laboratory (DE)

European Molecular Biology Laboratory is Europe's flagship laboratory for the life sciences. EMBL is an intergovernmental organisation with sites in Heidelberg, Barcelona, Grenoble, Hamburg, Heidelberg, Hinxton and Rome. The institute has the mission to promote molecular biology and health research. EMBL promotes, coordinates and operates major digital health and biodata infrastructure in Europe.

Oliver Stegle is Professor for Computational Genomics and group leader at EMBL. He co-directs the ELLIS Health program, is director of the ELLIS Unit Heidelberg and is speaker of the national genome-medicine data platform GHGA. He is ELLIS fellow and ERC investigator (ERC Synergy, 2019-2025).

Pluribus One (IT)

Pluribus One is a research-intensive SME based in Italy and operating in the cybersecurity market. Its staff holds a profound background in machine learning and cybersecurity, which drives innovation inside its products. Its leading product Web Application Security counts more than ten active installations across Italy. The company is currently involved in 8 EU-Funded R&D Projects. Pluribus One will contribute to ELSA in the context of the cybersecurity use case on malware detection.

Davide Ariu obtained a PhD in Computer and Information Engineering from the University of Cagliari in 2010. He worked until 2018 with the Pattern Recognition and Applications Laboratory of the same University, focusing on applications of AI/ML to computer security. Over the years, he participated in 15 EU funded R&D projects. In 2015 he co-founded Pluribus One, of which he is currently the CEO.

Yooz (FR)

Yooz is a 90-person French SME, created in 2015. Yooz offers a Cloud-based Purchase-to-Pay solution which serves more than 3,000 customers and 200,000 users worldwide. It leverages Artificial Intelligence and RPA technologies to deliver a high level of business process automation. Yooz is a fast-growing, award-winning company. For instance, it has been recognized as a SaaS innovator, named as a 10 Best Cloud Solution Provider by Industry Era.

Vincent Poulain d'Andecy is the head of the Yooz Research and Technologies Department since 2015. He is a graduate engineer of INSA Rennes and PhD of La Rochelle University. He started his career at ITESOFT in 1994 and has more than 25 years of experience in the development of Automatic Document Processing Systems. At Yooz, he is in charge of the AI developments with a 7-person team, he supervises PhD and collaborative research projects in partnership with Academia like La Rochelle University and the CVC-CERCA.

Leonardo (IT)

Leonardo is one of the world's top ten players in Aerospace, Defence and Security, a trusted long-term partner of choice for governments, institutions and private customers, delivering cutting-edge and dual-use technologies. LeonardoLabs are the company research laboratories with main focus on technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, Big Data and HPC.

Alessandro Massa is responsible for the research corporate laboratories called "Leonardo Labs". He has in charge to drive and supervise exploratory high-risk research programs and to develop and coordinate the interdivisiona l research and development programs. His main technical skills are in the areas of AI, Aerial Robotics, On-Board Avionic Equipment, Embedded Control Systems, RF systems (Radar, EW systems, and C-UAV), Inertial and Satellite Navigation Systems, Real-Time Digital Signal Processing.

PAL Robotics (ES)

PAL Robotics provides robotic products and services which can become an integral part of people's daily life, as well as research platforms as base for further innovation. It builds robot parts, personalized robot platforms, and robots for different service industries.PAL is interested in the operation of the generated outcome in end-user set-up and gathering relevant end-user feedback to enhance the functionalities of robot platforms for gaining competitive advantage in their respective markets.

Francesco Ferro obtained a MSc degree in Telecommunications Engineering in 2002 at the Polytechnic University of Turin. Francesco started working with the development of stereo vision algorithms and later joined the autonomous robot navigation team in order to implement various SLAM algorithms. He obtained an MBA at the UB university in Barcelona in 2011 and currently he is the CEO of PAL Robotics.

École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne (CH)

École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne is Europe's most cosmopolitan technical university. It welcomes students, professors and collaborators of more than 120 nationalities. EPFL has both a Swiss and international vocation and focuses on three missions: teaching, research and innovation.

Martin Jaggi is a Tenure Track Assistant Professor at EPFL, heading the Machine Learning and Optimization Laboratory. He is a Fellow of ELLIS, member of the ELLIS Unit at EPFL, and serves as an Area Chair at NeurIPS, ICML and ICLR, as well as an action editor at JMLR.

ETH Zurich (CH)

ETH Zurich is situated in the heart of Europe and builds on the ideals of freedom, individual responsibility, entrepreneurial spirit and open-mindedness to provide a climate inspiring top performance. It is associated to 21 Nobel Prize laureates and often considered the best (CS) university in continental Europe (e.g. QS - World University Rankings)

Martin Vechev is a Professor of Computer Science at ETH Zurich. After receiving his PhD from Cambridge University, UK, he received various recognitions including the ACM SIGPLAN Robin Milner Young Researcher Award and an ERC Starting Grant, has spoken at the European Parliament on AI and co-founded 3 startups, the latest focusing on trustworthy AI

Andreas Krause is a Professor of Computer Science at ETH Zurich, Academic Co-Director of the Swiss Data Science Center, Chair of the ETH AI Center and Co-Founder of the Spinoff LatticeFlow on trustworthy AI. Previously he was an Assistant Professor at Caltech, and received his Ph.D. from CMU. He is a Max Planck Fellow at the MPI for Intelligent Systems, an ELLIS Fellow, received ERC Starting and Consolidator Grants, Test of Time awards at KDD and ICML, and served as Program Chair for ICML 2018.


NVIDIA is a multinational technology company developing high-performance computing hardware for AI. Work based on NVIDIA's collaboration with a multi-hospital initiative led by Mass General Brigham on using federated learning to create robust AI models for healthcare was recently published in Nature Medicine.

University of Oxford (UK)

The University of Oxford is widely recognised as one of the world's leading science universities and the Department of Computer Science offers a vibrant research environment, with close links to the Turing Institute and industry. The Automated Verification group investigates techniques and software tools for safety verification and correct-by-construction synthesis of systems, including those incorporating machine learning components

Marta Kwiatkowska is Professor of Computing Systems at University of Oxford. She spearheaded the development of probabilistic and quantitative methods in verification on the international scene. Currently working on safety and robustness for machine learning and AI, she is an ELLIS fellow, member of GPAI and recipient of an ERC Advanced grant (2019-25).

Lancaster University (UK)

Lancaster University is a research-led university ranked top-10 in the UK situated in the historic city of Lancaster. It sees AI as a priority area in which it invested heavily through its successful Data Science and Security Lancaster Institutes and the Lancaster Intelligent, Robotic and Autonomous systems (LIRA) research centre, all represented in the proposal.

Plamen Angelov is Chair Professor of Intelligent Systems and Director of Research of the School of Computing and Communications as well as Director of LIRA (comprising 60+ faculty members) and a theme lead of the Security Lancaster Institute. He received multiple awards including the 2020 Dennis Gabor award for 'outstanding contributions to engineering applications of neural networks' (previous recipients include V. Vapnik and T. Kohonen. He is Editor-in-chief of Springer's journal Evolving Systems and 3 IEEE Transactions (on AI, on Cybernetics and on Fuzzy Systems). He is Fellow of IEEE and ELLIS and holds a DSc degree.

University of Birmingham (UK)

University of Birmingham is a public research university located in Birmingham, established in 1825 and founding member of the elite Russell Group of British universities. Its mission is to undertake world class-research that matters and provide outstanding global education.

Karen Yeung is Interdisciplinary Professor in Law, Ethics and Informatics in the Law School and School of Computer Science. She is a leading expert on the governance of emerging technologies. Her world-leading research examining the legal, democratic, societal and ethical implications of computational technologies (including AI) is shaping European, national and international policy and law reform via her extensive policy engagement, including as a former member of, and rapporteur for, the EU High Level Expert Group on AI which produced the EU Ethics Guidelines and EU Investment and Policy Guidelines for Trustworthy AI in 2019.

The Alan Turing Institute (UK)

The Alan Turing Institute is the UK national institute for data science and AI. Five founding universities - Cambridge, Edinburgh, Oxford, UCL and Warwick - and the UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council created the Institute in 2015. Eight more universities - Leeds, Manchester, Newcastle, Queen Mary University of London, Birmingham, Exeter, Bristol, and Southampton - were added in 2018. The Institute has been funded through grants from Research Councils, university partners and from strategic and other partnerships.

Adrian Weller is Programme Director for AI at the Turing Institute, leading work on Safe and Ethical AI, and a Principal Research Fellow in ML at the University of Cambridge. He is a Turing AI Fellow in Trustworthy ML, Programme Director for Trust and Society at the Leverhulme Centre for the Future of Intelligence, ELLIS Scholar, and an Advisory Board member of the UK's Centre for Data Ethics and Innovation. He previously held senior roles in the finance industry.