CWI researcher Tim Baarslag has been appointed as a new member of The Young Academy. Starting in 2020, he will join this platform for young scientists who are recognised internationally for their talent. The Young Academy is an independently operating platform within the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW).
Tim Baarslag will officially join The Young Academy on 1 April 2020. The Young Academy functions as an independent platform within the KNAW. The group sets up activities in the fields of interdisciplinarity, scientific policy, internationalisation, and science and society. It consists of fifty members, who have been appointed for a period of five years.
AI and negotiation strategies
Baarslag studies AI and negotiation strategies at CWI’s Intelligent & Autonomous Systems group and Utrecht University. His research goal is to have computers negotiate complex contracts on behalf of users. Such contracts may include, for example, agreements on energy prices, pharmaceutical prices, or the price of a house. To achieve this goal, Baarslag develops algorithms that enable computers to autonomously learn and implement all important elements of a negotiation. As a member of the Young Academy, he aims to appeal for open science, with a view to social support for the practical solutions and challenges of new technologies.
Baarslag’s research has induced numerous developments in the intersection between AI and negotiation strategies. Among other initiatives, Baarslag leads a partnership between CWI and Acumex, a Danish enterprise that has built the first online negotiation platform for trading in complex markets.
In 2017, Baarslag was awarded the ERCIM Cor Baayen Young Researcher Award, which is awarded annually to young research talents in computer science and applied mathematics. The award jury lauded his internationally oriented research cooperation, his talent for recognising the potential use of mathematical tools, and his cooperative skills. That same year, Baarslag obtained a Veni grant for young, talented researchers from the Dutch Research Council (NWO).
Baarslag made headlines in the Netherlands when he bought a house using one of his own negotiation algorithms. By putting the algorithms to work, he managed to negotiate the best possible deal for his future home. In recent years, Baarslag has given various other performances in the media, in which he has brought his research and field of expertise to the attention of a wide audience. One of the most notable examples of this, is his lecture at the Universiteit van Nederland (Dutch only). His research is also featured in Science Magazine, Wired, and New Scientist.