Research Statement
Robot technology has come a far way from large, unsafe manufacturing machines, to highly sophisticated androids with human-like appearance. Yet, in order for humans and robots to engage in direct physical interaction several requirements have to be met. Among others, robots need to be able to adapt their behavior in order to facilitate the interaction with a human partner. My research is focused on machine learning techniques that allow robots to both improve their motor skills as well as their interaction skills. By observing the behavior of others, robots learn how to cooperate or compete with a human opponent/partner. Because of my background in both computer animation and robotics I generally try to bridge the gap between these two areas and develop innovative hybrid approaches, e.g. use a CAVE virtual environment for training of robots.

Current Position
Postdoctoral Fellow

Educational Background
 Project: Interaction Learning for Responsive Humanoid Robots
 Chair of Virtual Reality and Multimedia, Freiberg, Germany
2006-2010Ph.D. Student
 supervised by Prof. Bernhard Jung
 Chair of Virtual Reality and Multimedia, Freiberg, Germany
 Thesis Title: Imitation of Motor Skills for Synthetic Humanoids 
2000-2005Diploma thesis
 supervised by Prof. Ulrich Furbach
 University of Koblenz-Landau
 Thesis Title: Intelligent Exploration in Evolutionary Algorithms
 Experiments on Physical Interaction Learning
 University of Osaka, Japan
 Supervisor: Prof. Dr. Minoru Asada, Prof. Hiroshi Ishiguro
 Imitation Learning Techniques for Android Robots
 University of Osaka, Japan
 Supervisor: Prof. Dr. Minoru Asada, Prof. Hiroshi Ishiguro
2005Intelligent Robotics Lab
 Neural Control Architecture for an Android Robot
 Department of Adaptive Machine Systems
 University of Osaka, Japan
 Supervisor: Prof. Hiroshi Ishiguro
Awards and Honors
2011Bernhard-v.-Cotta Award for Best Dissertation, Technical University Freiberg
2007Leisler-Kiep Award, Technical University Freiberg
2003Best Student Award, University of Koblenz-Landau