Experimentation in the Digital World

Guest professor course of the TU Wien Informatics Doctoral School by Viola Schiaffonati.


Experimentation does not only take place in the natural sciences, but also in other disciplines such as informatics and computer engineering. With the growing importance of information technology in business and society, computers and data processing systems have assumed a central role in this context. This, however, creates new methodological challenges for experimentation which have so far received very little attention.

The course presents and analyses philosophical and methodological issues which emerge when an experimental approach is applied in the context of computer science and engineering, with a particular attention to AI and robotics.

The lecturer of this course will be Viola Schiaffonati / Politecnico di Milano.

This is a guest professor course of the TU Wien Informatics Doctoral School. It is targeted to Doctoral Students of the Faculty of Informatics, but, subject to availability of free seats, open to all PhD students and interested Master students.

You can register and find further information here.


  • Course introduction, background and expectations (2 hours)
  • The conceptual and historical foundations of the experimental method (2 hours)
  • Experimental principles in the natural sciences (2 hours)
  • Experimental principles in the engineering sciences/practices (2 hours)
  • The reproducibility crisis and its impact on computer engineering (2 hours)
  • Toward a novel notion of experimentation (2 hours)
  • Experimenting in the realm of artificial disciplines (explorative experiments) (2 hours)
  • Novel ethical frameworks for explorative experimentation (2 hours)
  • Class presentations (2 hours)
  • Class presentations (2 hours)

Course Dates

Wed June 12: 9:00-13:00 Thurs June 13 9:00-13.00 Wed June 19: 9:00-13:00 Thurs June 20 9:00-13:00 Wed June 26: 9:00-13:00