Kevin Baum

 

kevin.baum(at)uni-saarland.de
Bldg. A2 3, Room 0.21,
Tel. +49 (0)681 302-2351

 

Research Interests

My current research focusses on normative ethics – with a focus on consequentialist theories and their problems  as well as on machine ethics and machine explainability regarding already available (non-sci-fi) AI systems. I am also particularly interested in computer ethics (as a subfield of applied ethics) and decision and game theory.

In my PhD thesis in philosophy (supervised by Ulla Wessels and Christoph Fehige), I investigate whether there is a specific collective action problem for consequentialism and, if so, whether any proposal made can solve it. While I believe that the answer to the former question is "yes", I believe that the answer to the latter question is "no". I thus develop a new consequentialist approach to the problem of collective action. I am also in the beginning of a second PhD project in computer science regarding formal, verifiable frameworks for machine ethics and machine explainability.

Finally, I am part of a project that aims at finding the best way to teach computational and algoritihmic thinking in combination with basic coding skills in primary schools. Essentially, this comes down to the question of how to close the intrasocietal digital divide. I am convinced that these ways of thinking and the associated skills are important for the ability to participate in our modern society and should thus be taught in school as early as reasonably possible.

 

Education

  • 06/2014: M.A., Philosophy, Saarland University, Thesis Title: Vom Bezug singulärer Terme in Aussagen über propositionale Einstellungen, Supervisor: Ulrich Nortmann
  • 01/2013: M.Sc., Computer Science, Saarland University, Thesis Title: GPGPU Supported Diffusion-Based Naïve Video Compression, Supervisor: Joachim Weickert
  • 08/2011: B.Sc., Computer Science, Saarland University, Thesis Title: Stützstellenauswahl für diffusionsbasierte Bildkompression unter Berücksichtigung einer Quadrixel-Substruktur-Restriktion, Supervisor: Joachim Weickert
  • 06/2006: Abitur, Gymnasium Süderelbe, Hamburg

 

Employment

  • 06/2015–present: Wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter (Graduate Assistant), Saarland University, Chair for Practical Philosophy (Ulla Wessels and Christoph Fehige)
  • 03/2015–present: Wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter (Graduate Assistant), Saarland University, Computer Science Department
  • 01/2015–06/2015: Wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter (Graduate Assistant), Saarland University, Chair for Philosophy of Mind (Heinz-Dieter Heckmann)
  • 08/2014–05/2015: Wissenschaftliche Hilfskraft (Research Assistant), Saarland University, Intel Visual Computing Center (IntelVCI)
  • 05/2014–07/2014: Wissenschaftliche Hilfskraft (Research Assistant), German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI), Campus Saarbrücken
  • 03/2014: Wissenschaftliche Hilfskraft (Research Assistant), German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI), Campus Saarbrücken
  • 02/2013–05/2014: Wissenschaftliche Hilfskraft (Research Assistant), Saarland University, Department of Philosophy
  • 06/2011–01/2013: Studentische Hilfskraft (Student Research Assistant), Saarland University, Department of Philosophy

 

Scholarships

  • 10/2011–10/2012: Deutschlandstipendium
  • 10/2012–10/2013: Deutschlandstipendium

 

Articles

  • »Algorithmen bei der Personalauswahl – eine kritische und hoffnungsvolle Betrachtung« (with Professor Dr. Cornelius König and Markus Langer) in Wirtschaftspsychologie Aktuell, 01/2018.
  • »From Machine Ethics To Machine Explainability and Back« (with Holger Hermanns and Timo Speith). ISAIM 2018 (International Symposium on Artificial Intelligence and Mathematics)
  • »Two Challenges for CI Trustworthiness and How to Address Them« (with Eva Schmidt and Maximilian Köhl) at XCI 2017, published in Proceedings of the 1st Workshop on Explainable Computational Intelligence (XCI 2017)
  • »What the Hack Is Wrong with Software Doping?« at ISoLA 2016 (7th International Symposium On Leveraging Applications of Formal Methods, Verification and Validation), published in LNCS (Lecture Notes in Computer Science) Proceedings, Springer
  • »MorphableUI: A Hypergraph-Based Approach to Distributed Multimodal Interaction for Rapid Prototyping and Changing Environments« (together with Andrey Krekhov, Jürgen Grüninger, David McCann, and Prof. Jens Krüger) at WSCG 2015 (24th International Conference on Computer Graphics, Visualization and Computer Vision 2015), published in WSCG proceedings in Computer Science Research Notes (CSRN).

 

Talks

  • (Forthcoming) »Moral Harmony vs. Supervenience: A New Dilemma for Consequentialism« (based on recent work with Eva Schmidt) at the tenth conference of the Gesellschaft für Analytische Philosophie (GAP.10), September 2018, Köln.
  • (Forthcoming) »A New View on Collective Decision Situations« at the 15th Conference of the International Society for Utilitarian Studies (ISUS 2018), Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), July 24-26, 2018
  • (Forthcoming) »Should utilitarianists recommend non-consequentialist autonomous vehicles?« (together with Timo Speith) at the 15th Conference of the International Society for Utilitarian Studies (ISUS 2018), Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), July 24-26, 2018
  • (Forthcoming) »Vom Anspruch der Erklärbarkeit. Zur Undurchschaubarkeit künstlicher Intelligenzen und der Hilflosigkeit von Menschen in Schleifen«, at the Futurologischer Kongress at Stadttheater Ingolstadt: 14 to 16 June 2018
  • »Ethik in der Wissenschaft« (together with mit Professorin Ulla Wessels) at Saarland University organized by the Zentrum für Schlüsselkompetenzen und Hochschuldidaktik (ZeSH), Campus A4 4, Room 2.42: 13 June 2018 
  • »Philosophie in Zeiten von Facebook und Cambridge Analytica: Was ist schlecht an Filterblasen?«, Tag der offenen Tür der Universität des Saarlandes (at the university's open day): 26th May 2018
  • »Krieg und Spiele: Über (teil-)autonome Waffensysteme, Verantwortungslücken, Menschen in Schleifen, programmierte Moral und maschinelle Erklärbarkeit«, Kino Achteinhalb, Saarbrücken: December 2017
  • »Ethics for Nerds: Über die Verantwortung als Informatiker«, Studenteneinführungsphase (StEP) (Informatik): October 2017
  • »Obligation Overboard? Decision-Theoretic Objective Consequentialism to the Rescue«, Munich Center for Mathematical Philosophy (MCMP) at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München (LMU): Summer 2017
  • »Ethics for Nerds: Fake News 2.0?«, Bundeswettbewerb Informatik 2017 (Endrunde an der Universität des Saarlandes): June 2017

 

Paper Presentations (Selection)

  • »Towards a Framework Combining Machine Ethics and Machine Explainability« (together with Timo Speith) at the 3rd Workshop on formal reasoning about Causation, Responsibility, and Explanations in Science and Technology (CREST 2018) as part of the 28th European Joint Conferences on Theory and Practice of Software (ETAPS 2018), 20th of April 2018 in Thessaloniki
  • »Moral Harmony vs. Supervenience: A New Dilemma for Consequentialism« (together with Eva Schmidt), Saarland University, Workshop in Practical Philosophy: Winter 2017/2018
  • »Many-Actions Cases and Problems: A Taxonomy«, Saarland University, Workshop in Practical Philosophy: Summer 2016
  • »A Formal Solution of Accumulative Many-ActionsProblems« (together with Tatjana Višak), Saarland University, Workshop in Practical Philosophy: Summer 2016
  • »Utilizing the Differences We in Fact Make – A   ›Minimally Invasive‹ Modification of Objective Act-Consequentialism that Solves the Coordination Problem«, Saarland University, Workshop in Practical Philosophy: Winter 2015/2016
  • »Who is Doing Wrong in Collective Wrongdoings? Questions to Andreou«, Saarland University, Workshop in Practical Philosophy: Summer 2015
  • »Das Problem gemeinschaftlichen Handelns: Kagans Ansatz und wieso er scheitert« (The Problem of collective actions: Kagan’s approach and why it fails), Saarland University, Workshop in Practical Philosophy: Winter 2014/2015

 

Poster Presentations:

  • »Kagans ›Lösung‹ des Problems gemeinschaftlichen Handelns: Wie eine verborgene Annahme Kagans Ansatz entwertet.« At the conference of the Gesellschaft für Analytische Philosophie (GAP 9), September 2015, Osnabrück.

 

Teaching (Saarland University)

 

Tutoring (Saarland University)

  • B.A. Lecture: »Einführung in die Ethik« (Introduction to ethics), Winter Term 2011–2014
  • B.A. Lecture: »Einführung in die Sprachphilosophie und Logik« (Introduction to philosophy of language and logics), Winter Term 2013
  • B.Sc. Lecture: »Informationssysteme« (Information systems), Summer Term 2010–2011
  • B.Sc. Lecture: »Theoretische Informatik« (Theoretical computer science), Winter Term 2009
  • B.Sc. Review Course: »Mathematik für Informatiker II« (Mathematics for computer scientists II), Summer 2009

 

 

Memberships

  • Gesellschaft für Analytische Philosophie (German Society for Analytic Philosophy)
  • Gesellschaft für Informatik (German Informatics Society)
  • Gesellschaft für Utilitarismusstudien (German Society for Utilitarian Studies)
  • Universitätsgesellschaft des Saarlandes (Society of the Saarland University)
  • Digitalcourage (a German privacy and digital rights organization)

 

Committee Work

  • Mit­glied im »Digi­ta­li­sie­rungs­fo­rum Saar« (Arbeits­gruppe Bil­dung und Arbeitsgruppe Ethik und Recht) der saar­län­di­schen Staatskanzlei / Member of working groups Education and Ethics and the Law in »Saarland's Forum for Digitization«

 

In the Media

Especially my teaching in Computer Ethics and my research in Machine Explainability drew the attention of journalists to me. Besides a couple of interviews, I had some more significant media appearances:

     

    Here is a selection of articles and broadcasts I were involved as interview partner: