Professor Louise Richardson, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Oxford, and Professor Reinhold Geilsdoerfer, Managing Director of the Dieter Schwarz Foundation, have today signed an agreement which will fund new posts and facilitate further ground-breaking research at the Oxford Internet Institute.

Support from the charitable foundation of German entrepreneur Dieter Schwarz will enable researchers at the Oxford Internet Institute (OII) to undertake an ambitious programme of research dedicated to investigating the impact of AI and other game-changing technologies.

The gift will fund:

  • The hosting of a node of a global artificial intelligence hub based in Oxford at the new Schwarzman Centre for Humanities, opening in 2024/25.
  • A research programme on Artificial Intelligence, Government, and Policy led by the Schwarz Associate Professor in AI, Government & Policy;
  • A research programme on AI & Work, led by the Schwarz Associate Professor in AI & Work; and
  • The delivery of a programme of global research and activity in collaboration with Technical University of Munich Heilbronn.

This donation is one of the largest single gifts made to the Oxford Internet Institute since its formation in 2001, when it was established with support from founding donor IT entrepreneur Dame Stephanie Shirley and from the Higher Education Funding Council for England.

Welcoming the announcement, Professor Louise Richardson, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Oxford, said: ‘We are delighted to work with the Dieter Schwarz Foundation on some of the most relevant questions of our time and deeply grateful for the support of this visionary foundation.’

Professor Vicki Nash, Associate Professor, Senior Policy Fellow and Director of the OII, said: ’We are extremely grateful for the support of the Dieter Schwarz Foundation, which will be vital in enabling us to continue to produce world-leading research at the OII. I can’t wait to get started on this ambitious and exciting programme of work and look forward to our collaboration with TUM Heilbronn.’

This latest agreement with the foundation builds on their recent endowment of the Schwarz-Taylor Chair of the German Language and Literature. This support secured the long-term future of a prestigious and internationally important academic position, ensuring that future generations of students can continue to gain a deep understanding of German language and culture.

Professor Reinhold Geilsdoerfer, Managing Director of the Dieter Schwarz Foundation said: ‘We are delighted to be working in partnership with the University of Oxford, and the Oxford Internet Institute. The endowment of these professorships will enable important research into the social, ethical and societal impact of AI: areas which are of particular importance and concern to the foundation.