Sören Auer is new Director of Technische Informationsbibliothek (TIB)

He took up a professorship in “Data Science and Digital Libraries” at Leibniz Universität Hannover at the same time

Professor Dr. Sören Auer was appointed as new Director of the Technische Informationsbibliothek (TIB) – German National Library of Science and Technology ‒ Leibniz Information Centre for Science and Technology and University Library in Hannover on 1 July 2017. He also started work as Professor of “Data Science and Digital Libraries” at TIB and Leibniz Universität Hannover’s Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at the same time. In addition to his activities as Director, the 41-year-old will lead the “Research and Development” programme area and the “Data Science and Digital Libraries” research group.

Help shape digital transition and increase level of research at TIB

“I look forward to performing my new duties as TIB Director: one challenge will be digitisation, which affects libraries to the same extent as any other sector. TIB is perfectly positioned for this process and already provides striking impetus. I am keen to team up with the library’s 500+ staff members to help shape this transition process in the years ahead,” stated Auer.

Portrait of Prof. Dr. Sören Auer
Prof. Dr. Sören Auer // Photo: TIB/C. Behrens

“I also seek to raise the level of research at TIB and to increase its visibility at the international level,” he added. One example of cooperation is the “Data Science and Open Knowledge” joint lab planned with L3S Research Centre, which will involve the exploration and development of new methods for interlinking, exchanging and analysing data, and knowledge. In addition, a second professorship with Hannover University of Applied Sciences and Arts will be established in cooperation with TIB in the area of “Networked Data in Information Science”. These activities and the appointment of a professor to the office of Director will enable TIB to step up its research endeavours and to continue confidently on its path towards becoming a library that conducts research.

In his research at TIB, Professor Auer will focus on the topics of data science, digital libraries and open knowledge. Examples of his research include semantic data, and integrating heterogeneous and complex data volumes: the semantic structuring and interlinking of data is a basic technology for digitisation and knowledge exchange between researchers, as well as companies. In the EU-funded BigDataEurope project, for example, a software toolbox for data integration and analysis is being developed to help tackling social challenges such as mobility and health. In the SlideWiki.org project, Professor Auer is part of an international consortium that is working to create an authoring platform based on crowdsourcing for open, multilingual OpenCourseWare content. “My research interests in ‘semantic technologies’ will certainly be an advantage in enhancing the services offered by TIB and developing new services. In the medium to long term, I envisage TIB providing more data- and knowledge-based services,” stated Auer with conviction.

Professor Dr. Sören Auer succeeds Uwe Rosemann, who was TIB Director from 1998 to 2016. Dr. Irina Sens, Head of Library Operations, was Interim Director of TIB from October 2016 to the end of June 2017.

About Prof. Dr. Sören Auer

Before being appointed Director of TIB, Professor Dr. Sören Auer, born in Dresden in 1975, led the “Enterprise Information Systems (EIS)” department at Fraunhofer Institute for Intelligent Analysis and Information Systems IAIS and held a Chair in Enterprise Information Systems at the University of Bonn. After studying Mathematics and Computer Science at Hagen, Dresden and Yekaterinburg, Auer earned a PhD in Computer Science at Leipzig University. This was followed by posts as post-doctoral researcher at the University of Pennsylvania and at Leipzig University, where he led the “Agile Knowledge Engineering and Semantic Web” (AKSW) research group.