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Prof. Dr. Bernd Ludwig

Areas of Work

Natural Language Processing

Our main research interest lies in the interference between syntax, semantics, and pragmatics of natural language - viewed from the perspective of automated language understanding: Reconstructing the meaning of utterances automatically requires well suited means for formally representing syntactic and semantic information entailed in these utterances. The precise meaning of an utterance in context can only be determined effectively if information about the context can be incorporated in this inference process. As a consequence, natural language understanding requires also the context to be represented formally. The challenge of this area of research obviously is to develop methods to apply knowledge about the discourse context and the activity context in which utterances are made for inferring the meaning of an utterance in this context and conclude the changes of the context resulting from the utterance.

Another aspect of this issue is the context-aware processing of speech recognizer output. Here, the challenge lies in applying pragmatic knowledge for the evaluation and disambiguation of hypotheses generated by a speech recognizer.

For devising solutions to the issues addressed above, we cover several interconnected areas of research:

  • Syntax, semantics, and pragmatics of natural language
  • Theory of discourse
  • Models of discourse representation
  • Parsing
  • Formal languages and formal logics
  • Knowledge representation and reasoning
  • Probabilistic models of natural language

Multimodal User Interfaces

NLU is of interest in our research group as a modality for users to interact with intelligent information systems. Such systems require intelligent interfaces as users and systems interact and exchange information about cooperative problem solving tasks. Intelligent interfaces have to support this highly complex multimodal discourse. To develop innovative solutions in this area, we work on

- models of cooperation
- symbolic and probabilistic planning
- modellng for actions
- task analysis
- problem solving

User Models and User Preferences

When users and information systems cooperate, systems have to react appropriately on user preferences. Understanding the preferences helps understanding the user's behavior, recognizing his current and future activities, and predicting what users could do next. In several use cases, we develop user models for activities and preferences and tackle the areas of

  • User modeling
  • User preferences
  • Recommender systems

Interactive Assistance Systems

In several research projects, we apply our concepts in order to implement and evaluate intelligent assistance and information systems. They are capable to interact in different modalities with their users and solve problems cooperatively. Currently, the focus lies on:

  • Pedestrian navigation systems (indoor and outdoor)
  • Route planning for routes with multiple means of transport
  • Route planning in indoor environments
  • Localization in indoor environments
  • User adaptive and context aware browsers (e.g. tourist guides on smartphones)
  • Personalized information systems for prevention of diseases


Bernd Ludwig studied Computer Science at Friedrich-Alexander-University in Erlangen-Nuremberg from 1992-1997. His 2004 phd thesis focused on plan-based dialoge management for natural language processing applications and was supervised by Prof. Heinrich Niemann and Prof. Günther Görz, respectively. Bernd finished his habilitation at  Friedrich-Alexander-University in Erlangen-Nuremberg in 2010 (title of thesis: Plan-based HCI in multimodal recommender systems ("Planbasierte Mensch-Maschine-Interaktion in multimodalen Assistenzsystemen").

1997-2004 Bernd was a post-doctoral researcher at the knowledge processing group of the Bavarian Research Center for Knowledge-Based Systems in Erlangen. He became an assistant professor at the Chair of Artificial Intelligence (Friedrich-Alexander-University in Erlangen-Nuremberg) in 2004. In 2010, Bernd was appointed BIT guest professor und postdoc researcher at the Free University of Bozen and the Department of Information Engineering and Computer Science der Universitá degli Studi di Trento. After his return in November 2010, he was an associate professor (Privatdozent)  until March 2011. Bernd was appointed as professor of Computational Linguistics at the Chair of Information Science at University of Regensburg in August 2011.

His research focuses on the dependcies of Communicative Action in Human Computer Interaction as well as its implementation using efficient algorithms. Furthermore, he is interested in the use of mobile devices as an aid to solve complex tasks using recommender systems. Research projects (ROSE; VAMOS; NADINE) currently lead by Bernd Ludwig strongly reflect this interest.

He is co-editor of the German journal Künstliche Intelligenz and is an appointed reviewer at and organizer of several international conferences.


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Sci. Activities

PC member

  • AIA 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 (Conference on Artificial Intelligence and Applications)
  • CaRR (Context-awareness in Retrieval and Recommendation) 2011
  • ENTER 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
  • euroHCIR 2012 (2nd European Workshop on Human-Computer Interaction and Information Retrieval)
  • Interact 2013
  • ICAART 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
  • IWCS 2011 (9th International Conference on Computational Semantics)
  • Log-IC 2011 (Second International Workshop on Logic-Based Interpretation of Context: Modeling and Applications)
  • MobileHCI 2013
  • RecSys 2014, 2015
  • S4F2012 (Searching For Fun Workshop in conjunction with ECIR 2012), 2014
  • UMMS3 (User Modelling for Motivational Systems 3)
  • IIiX 2014
  • ECIR 2015

Reviews for Journals

  • UMUAI (User Modeling and User-Adapted Interaction)
  • BNSC (Journal on BioNanoScience)
  • BISE
  • German Journal of Artificial Intelligence
  • TiiS (ACM Transactions on Interactive Intelligent Systems)

(Co-)Chair of Workshops or Conferences

  • CAIA 2010, 2011 (Workshop on Context Aware Intelligent Assistance in conjunction with KI 2010, 2011)
  • IIiX2014 (Information Interaction in Context symposium)
  • Lifestyle 2012 (Workshop on Recommender Technologies for Lifestyle Change in conjunction with RecSys 2012)


Information Science

Prof Dr.-Ing.
Bernd Ludwig
Bernd Ludwig

Building PT, Room 3.0.84c
Phone +49941 943-3600