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Philipp Staab accepts appointment to professorship at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

© ECDF/PR/Felix Noack

On 12 March 2024, Philipp Staab accepted the appointment of Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin to the permanent professorship "Sociology of Work, Economy and Technological Change" at the Institute of Social Sciences. Staab is the third of ten professors to take up a professorship that emerges from the ECDF and is permanently appointed to one of Berlin's universities.

"I am very pleased to be able to continue my time at HU Berlin and the ECDF. With the new professorship, I would like to focus even more on the connection between technological and ecological issues," says the sociologist. Philipp Staab was ECDF Professor of Sociology of the Future of Work at HU Berlin from February 2019 to March 2024. He has also been a member of the ECDF Board of Directors since April 2023. During his ECDF professorship, Staab's research focused, among other things, on how certain logics that have shaped the rise of the commercial internet are being transferred to other areas as part of the ongoing digitalisation of the world of work. This includes, for example, the strong concentration of power of leading digital companies and their influence on traditional industries. In more recent work, Staab predicts a society that will be characterised primarily by adaptation due to various crises. "We are entering an age of self-preservation. This will also give digitalization a new face," explains Staab. 

During his time at the ECDF, Philipp Staab was able to realize various interdisciplinary research projects. These include the project The Political Economy of Artificial Intelligence, funded by the German Research Foundation, which analyzes the impact of AI technologies on politics, business, science and the German economic structure. Other projects such as Networked Clinic - Relieved Care examine the effects of software on work management and control as well as the possibilities of interest representation, while the AISUM (AI Empowered Sustainable Urban Mobility Platform) project aims to establish a platform for sustainable urban mobility in which climate protection and resource efficiency are structurally anchored.

For the Einstein Foundation Berlin and the Senate Chancellery for Science and Research, the sustainable establishment of the ECDF in Berlin as a centre of science is of particular importance. The Senate Chancellery therefore announced ten permanent ECDF professorships at an early stage. The selection process for these positions was carried out in 2020 and 2021, with five professors being selected for permanent positions in each year. The first two professors were able to take up their permanent professorships in 2023: Prof Dr Berit Greinke at the UdK Berlin and Prof Dr David Bermbach at the TU Berlin. Seven more professors are to follow.