Sebastian Schelter named as head of AIRLab

Sebastian Schelter has been announced as the first manager of the AIRLab, the joint ICAI-Ahold Delhaize artificial intelligence industry lab, with effect from 1 April 2020.

Sebastian Schelter, currently a Faculty Fellow with the Center for Data Science at New York University, will join the UvA’s Faculty of Science, with effect from 1 April 2020. His appointment is the first made by Ahold Delhaize under their commitment to the Kickstart AI platform, which was announced in October 2019.

Schelter’s research focuses on the intersection of data management and machine learning. He has extensive experience in building real world systems for companies such as Amazon Research, Twitter, IBM Research and Zalando.

Schelter’s work with the AIRLab will focus on effectively managing vast quantities of data and enabling the deployment of algorithmic solutions. Such solutions include better forecasting product demand for stores and more efficient routing of trucks, both of which could reduce waste.

About the AIRLab

In the AIRLab, seven PhDs will conduct research into socially responsible algorithms that can be used to make recommendations to consumers and into transparent AI technology for managing goods flows. The research will take place at Albert Heijn and, both brands in the Ahold Delhaize portfolio.

Kickstart AI

Kickstart AI is a platform aimed at boosting the AI ecosystem in the Netherlands by accelerating and promoting the development of AI technology and nurturing AI talent in the country. The platform is driven by five Dutch companies: Ahold Delhaize, ING, KLM, NS and Royal Philips. It is intended to add educational capacity, foster the development of the AI community in the Netherlands, and reiterate the position of the Netherlands as a competitive and relevant global AI hub.


The Innovation Center for Artificial Intelligence (ICAI) is focused on the joint development of AI technology through industry labs with the business sector, government and knowledge institutes. It’s national headquarters are located in Amsterdam’s Science Park and ICAI Amsterdam is an ADS Gold Partner.

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