The rapid development in the field of artificial intelligence (AI) is one of the most profound challenges that are faced by our society. To address these challenges, we believe that it is important for our students, teachers and researchers to develop a comprehensive and deep understanding of the key concepts and methods in AI, based on proper mathematical modelling and analysis.
The current elective course Seminar in the Mathematics and Data Science will be merging multiple existing teaching and research topics and include new teaching topics, e.g. ‘Introduction to Topology, Analysis and Geometry’, around key concepts such as topological spaces, groups, homology; time-frequency analysis; differential geometry. 
The different chapters of the seminar will be conducted online and be open to students from all partners of this connected community. A local off-line workshop in all partners will be set up to facilitate active communications in teaching-learning as well as research based on specific chapters of the seminar. 
Research-oriented learning will be encouraged. As a Seminar student you will be evaluated based on certain topics instead of exams, presenting your own investigations on the identified topics. New research based topics will include Topological and Geometrical Data Analysis, Analysis for Advanced Machine Learning and Cross Modality Deep Learning.  
Joint research opportunities between the partners of the connected community will be pursued, while possible joint theses on PhD, master or bachelor levels will be actively investigated upon. 
How to get involved?

(Students and educators)
Contact Prof. Ann Dooms (, Prof. Kenny De Commer ( or Els Decoster, Local Facilitator (
Connected Community Members
Lead: Ann Dooms (VUB). Email:

Prof. Dr. Ann Dooms (PhD in Mathematics, 2004) leads the research group Digital Mathematics (DIMA) of the Department of Mathematics and Data Science, which focuses on discrete and continuous techniques for Data Science (WIDS), where Ann is specialised in information forensics and security. She has a long-standing expertise in pattern recognition with applications in image processing for digital painting and document analysis and post-quantum cryptography. She was elected member of the ‘Jonge Academie’ and the IEEE Technical Committee in Information Forensics and Security. Ann is associate editor of the Elsevier Journal of Information Security & Applications (JISA) and member of the scientific board of Belgian Defence. She won several prizes for education, research, science communication and valorisation.

Partner: Kenny De Commer (VUB). Email:

Prof. Kenny De Commer received his PhD in Mathematics at KU Leuven, as an FWO aspirant, with the thesis `Galois coactions for algebraic and locally compact quantum groups' (advisor A. Van Daele). He then had a postdoctoral position 2009-2011 under the ERC-advanced grant (supported guidance of R. Longo at the Università di Tor Vergata, Rome, Italy). From 2011-2013, he was a Lecturer at the Université de Cergy-Pontoise, France. From 2014-2019, he was appointed tenure track research professor at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel, and as of February 2019 has been associate professor at VUB. In the period 2020-2023, he acted as the head of the department of mathematics and data science (WIDS) of VUB. His research interests are in representation theory in the analytic setting, and more particularly its connections to operator algebras, quantum groups and category theory.

Partner: David Tewodrose (VUB). Email:

As from October 1st 2023 David Tewodrose is a tenure track professor in the Department of Mathematics and Data Science of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (Belgium). Between September 2021 and September 2023, he was a postdoctoral researcher at Laboratoire de Mathématiques Jean Leray from Nantes Université and worked under the supervision of Gilles Carron. His research field was geometric analysis. Between October 2020 and September 2021, he was a postdoctoral researcher at Université Libre de Bruxelles, under the supervision of Bruno Premoselli. From September 2018 to September 2020, he was assistant professor at  CY Cergy Paris University. From November 2015 to August 2018, he was a PhD candidate in fundamental mathematics at Scuola Normale Superiore di Pisa, in the framework of a joint supervision with Ecole Normale Supérieure de Paris. His advisors were L. Ambrosio in Pisa and T. Coulhon in Paris. 

Partner: Tan Lu (VUB). Email:

Tan Lu is an assistant professor in the research group of Digital Mathematics (DIMA), department of mathematics and data science (WIDS), VUB. He obtained his Bachelor and Master’s degrees in Electronic Information Engineering, both from University of Electronic Science and Technology of China (UESTC). He has previously worked as a visiting lecturer in Singapore, before obtaining his PhD in the department of mathematics and data science in VUB in 2020. He is currently leading the KBR data science lab, which is established based on a collaboration between VUB and the royal library of Belgium. 

Partner: Jan De Beule (VUB). Email:

Jan De Beule (PhD in Mathematics, 2004) is an assistant professor in the research group of Digital Mathematics (DIMA), department of mathematics and data science (WIDS), VUB. His field of research is discrete mathematics, with applications in data science. He is specialised in finite geometry, graph theory, and coding theory. Furthermore, he is also interested in computational exploration of combinatorial structures. 

Partner: Horacio Saggion (UPF). Email:

Horacio Saggion is the Chair Professor in Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence, and Head of the Large Scale Text Understanding Systems Lab in the TALN Group at the Department of Information and Communication Technologies, Universitat Pompeu Fabra. His main research interest is Computational Linguistics. He works in the areas of Text Summarization, Information Extraction and Semantic Analysis. He was involved in research and development with the GATE platform from the year 2000. He is the creator of the SUMMA Summarization system and was the principal investigator of the projects Simplext and Able to Include which resulted in multilingual text simplification technology. 

Partner: Louis Ioos (CY). Email:

Louis Ioos is a tenure track professor at CY Cergy University, in the Paris area. The themes of his research are differential geometry and global analysis. Specifically, he is interested in geometric quantization and the study of the Bergman kernel from the point of view of local index theory, as well as in applications to complex and symplectic geometry.