Public event

Too smart to regulate? How AI challenges good governance

AI has emerged as a transformative force across the globe, impacting industries, economies and societies. From chatbots to autonomous vehicles, personalised healthcare solutions and government services, the influence of AI is pervasive and prompts the need for thoughtful and effective regulation.
While AI promises increased efficiency and innovation and an improved quality of life, the rapid evolution of AI also brings ethical concerns, privacy issues and the potential for harmful bias in decision making. Achieving a balance between fostering innovation and safeguarding against unintended consequences requires a proactive and well-informed approach to regulation.
Key questions concerning how AI should be regulated include: 
•    What should be subject to regulation? 
•    Who should be responsible for regulating AI? 
•    What forms of regulation are suitable to ensure transparency, fairness and accountability in AI systems? 
The Hertie Futures Forum on AI regulation, co-hosted by the Hertie School's Centre for Digital Governance and the Data Science Lab, will address these and other questions together with some of the most distinguished representatives from business, government and academia.


  • 6:00 - 6:05 pm: Welcome remarks by Cornelia Woll, President of the Hertie School
  • 6:05 - 6:10 pm: Panel introduction 
  • 6:15 - 6:30 pm: Opening statements from the panellists
  • 6:30 - 7:10 pm: Moderated panel discussion
  • 7:10 - 7:30 pm: Q&A session with the audience



  • Daniela Stockmann, Director of the Centre for Digital Governance, Hertie School
  • Lynn Kaack, Assistant Professor of Computer Science and Public Policy, Hertie School


Matthias Spielkamp

  • Matthias Spielkamp is co-founder and executive director of AlgorithmWatch (Theodor Heuss Medal 2018, Grimme Online Nominee 2019). He testified before committees of the Council of Europe, the European Parliament, the German Bundestag and other institutions on automation and AI and was a member of the Global Partnership on AI (GPAI) from 2020-2022. Matthias serves on the governing board of the German section of Reporters Without Borders, the advisory councils of Stiftung Warentest, Freudenberg Stiftung and the Whistleblower Network and the Expert Committee on Communication/Information of Germany’s UNESCO Commission.

Carla Hustedt

  • Carla Hustedt is the director of the “Centre for Digital Society” at the Mercator Foundation. Her work focuses on the impact of digitalization on democratic structures and questions of (in-)equality. Until April 2021 she was the head of the Bertelsmann Foundation’s “Ethics of Algorithms” project. In 2019, she advised the AI Enquete Commission of the German Bundestag on the transparency of algorithmic systems. Carla Hustedt is the head of the Steering Committee of the European AI and Society fund, a member of the advisory board of the Hessian Center for Responsible Digitality (ZEVEDI) and the initiative “SheTransformsIT for more women in tech.

Kai Zenner

  • Kai Zenner, the Digital Policy Adviser at the European Parliament, holds a degree in politics and law with specializations in Security Studies, Foreign Policy Analysis, Constitutional, and European Law. Beginning his career as a Research Associate at the European Office of the Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation in Brussels, he later assumed the role of Head of Office and Digital Policy Adviser for MEP Axel Voss (EPP Group) in mid-2017. As a member of the OECD.AI Network of Experts since 2021, Zenner was recognized as the best MEP Assistant in 2023 and achieved the notable rank of #13 in Politico's Power 40 - class of 2023.

Jan Hiesserich

  • Jan Hiesserich is Vice President Strategy & Communications of Aleph Alpha, a German company in the field of artificial intelligence based in Heidelberg. He studied international relations, leadership, political science, and finance at the Wharton and Harvard Business School, as well as at the universities of Bonn, Prague, and Warwick. From mid-2015, Hiesserich served as Managing Director at Hering Schuppener (now FGS Global). In 2020, he assumed the role of Head of CEO Communications & Strategic Positioning at the software company SAP in Walldorf and became the Communication & Strategy Executive at the U.S. data analysis provider Palantir Technologies in early 2021.

Moderator: Daniela Stockmann

  • Daniela Stockmann is Director of the Centre for Digital Governance and Professor of Digital Governance at the Hertie School. Her current research focuses on the interaction between government, platform firms, and citizens in the area of social media governance. She studies these interactions both in China and in Europe. Her most recent project, funded by a Starting Grant of the European Research Council, explores the impact of social media on user behaviour regarding politics in China. Stockmann has served as advisor on Chinese foreign policy and European social media governance to policy-makers in the Netherlands, Germany, and the United States.

Moderator: Lynn Kaack

  • Lynn Kaack is Assistant Professor of Computer Science and Public Policy at the Hertie School. Her research and teaching focuses on methods from statistics and machine learning to inform climate mitigation policy across the energy sector, and on climate-related AI policy. She is a co-founder and chair of Climate Change AI, which is an organization to facilitate work at the intersection of machine learning and climate action. She obtained a PhD in Engineering and Public Policy and a Master's in Machine Learning from Carnegie Mellon University, as well as a MS and BS in Physics from the Free University of Berlin

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