Chair of Sociology, in particular of Modeling and Simulation

Curriculum Vitae


Name: Prof. Dr. rer. nat. habil. Dr. h. c. Dirk Helbing

Current position:
Professor of Sociology, in particular of Modeling and Simulation at ETH Zurich

Nationality: German

Parents: Ingeborg and Horst-Hartwig Helbing

Professional preparation:

Field of Study / Activity
Georg-August University Göttingen, Germany Physics First diploma/B.Sc.
Georg-August University Göttingen, Germany
Physics (Pedestrian Dynamics)
University of Stuttgart, Germany

Physics (Interactive
Social Behavior)
Ph.D. 1992
University of Stuttgart, Germany
Theoretical Physics (Traffic
University of Stuttgart, Germany
Assistant Professor
Weizmann Institute of Science, Israel
Visiting Scientist
Xerox Palo Alto Research Center, USA
Eötvös University, Hungary
Visiting Scientist
Tel Aviv University, Israel
Visiting Scientist
Collegium Budapest, Hungary
Senior Fellow
Dresden University of Technology, Germany
Full Professor
INRETS, Paris, France
Visiting Scientist
ETH Zurich, Switzerland
Full (Ordinary) Professor
  since 2007
Santa Fe Institute, USA
External Faculty Member
Harvard University, USA Visiting Scientist
  Aug/Sep 2010
University Oxford, Nuffield College, GB Visiting Scientist   Oct/Nov 2010


Research activities include:

Past teaching activities include graduate courses in transport planning, traffic modeling and simulation, operations research, econometrics and multivariate statistics, time series analysis, and stochastic modeling of transport phenomena. Current research and teaching is performed in Sociology, in particular of Modeling and Simulation. Courses include "Human Coordination in Space and Time", "Mathematical Sociology, Agent-Based Modeling and Artificial Societies", "From Crowds to Crises", and "Modeling Socio-Economic Systems and Crises".

Past administrative responsibilities include appointment as director of the Institute for Transport and Economics, membership in the council, in the Ph.D. committee and in the strategy commission of the Faculty of Traffic and Transportation Sciences at TU Dresden, leadership of the faculty's working group for public relations, membership in boards of EXYSTENCE, GIACS, and ONCE-CS, which are EU programs in complexity science, activity as a "super-referee" (Fachkollegiat) for the German Research Foundation (DFG), representation of the "Physics of Socio-Economic Systems" Division (Φ·SOE) of the German Physical Society (DPG) and of the European research program COST P10: Physics of Risk, and member of the award committee of the international Young Scientist Award in Socio- and Econophysics, co-founder and vice-chairman of the ETH Risk Center.

Current administrative responsibilities: Head of the "Physics of Socio-Economic Systems" Division (Φ·SOE) of the German Physical Society (DPG). Member of the ETH Risk Center. Board member of the Statistical and Nonlinear Physics Division of the European Physical Society (EPS). Scientific coordinator of the FuturICT flagship project.

Activities as principal investigator in about 20 research projects so far, sponsored by the German Research Foundation (DFG), Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF), European Union (EU) and European Research Foundation (ESF), Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT), Siemens AG, Volkswagen AG, SCA Packaging Ltd. and various industrial partners such as the Volkswagen AG, SCA Packaging, Infineon Technologies, the PTV AG, the Bosch AG, the Siemens AG, and other companies.

Major Research Projects:

Professional Activities and Committees


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