Prof. Dr. Volker Markl

Director | BIFOLD

Full Professor and Chair | Database Systems and Information Management (DIMA) Group at Technische Universität Berlin

Chief Scientist and Head | Intelligent Analytics for Massive Data (IAM) Research Group at the German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI)

President | VLDB Endowment Board of Trustees

Co-Lead | Technical Enablers and Data Science Working Group of the German Platform for Artificial Intelligence („Plattform Lernende Systeme“), 2018.

Speaker | Forum Digital Technologies

Website | Google Scholar

Technische Universität Berlin

Database Systems and Information Management Group (DIMA)

Einsteinufer 17

D-10587 Berlin

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Prof. Dr. Volker Markl

Volker Markl is a Full Professor and Chair of the Database Systems and Information Management (DIMA) Group at the Technische Universität Berlin (TU Berlin). At the German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI), he is Chief Scientist and Head of the Intelligent Analytics for Massive Data Research Group. In addition, he was Director of the Berlin Big Data Center (BBDC), a collaborative research center bringing together research groups in the fields of distributed systems, scalable data processing, text mining, computer networks, machine learning, and applications in healthcare, logistics, Industry 4.0, and information marketplaces. Furthermore, he was co-director of the Berlin Center for Machine Learning (BZML, the Berliner Zentrum für Maschinelles Lernen in German). This initiative further bolstered ongoing collaborative research in scalable data management and machine learning. Both BBDC and BZML merged into the new Berlin Institute for the Foundations of Learning and Data (BIFOLD), which is jointly directed by Klaus-Robert Müller and Volker Markl. Earlier in his career, he was a Research Staff Member and Project Leader at the IBM Almaden Research Center in San Jose, California, USA and a Research Group Leader at FORWISS, the Bavarian Research Center for Knowledge-based Systems located in Munich, Germany.

Volker has authored and published more than 220 research papers at world-class scientific venues. He has offered over 240 presentations in numerous industrial settings, research institutions and major conferences worldwide, including keynote speeches at premier scientific venues, such as VLDB, ICDE, and DEBS. Furthermore, he regularly serves as Chair to varying program committees and is a Member of major international database conferences. In the early 2010s, he became a member of the Natural Science and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) and served on several NSERC Computer Science Evaluation Groups.

He has been both the Speaker and Principal Investigator for the Stratosphere Project, which resulted in a Humboldt Innovation Award as well as Apache Flink, the open-source big data analytics system. With a community of more than 26,000 members and over 700 code contributors, Flink is recognized as a highly flexible, scalable, and extensible stream processing framework with several interfaces for describing continuous data streams and novel methods for fault tolerance. Volker has been co-founder, advisor, and mentor to several startups, including dataArtisans, Parstream, and Aklamio. In addition, Volker advises and collaborates with several IT companies, including IBM, SAP, Microsoft, Deutsche Telekom, HP, Oracle, Amazon, Huawei, Zalando, as well as many SMEs.

Research Interests

  • Novel hardware architectures for information management
  • Scalable processing and optimization of declarative data analysis programs
  • Data infrastructures
  • End-to-end machine learning
  • Information marketplaces
  • Technological enablers for responsible data management
  • Scalable data science, including graph mining, text mining, and machine learning

Awards and Honors

2020 ACM SIGMOD 2020 Best Paper Award
2019 EDBT 2019 Best Paper Award
2019 BTW 2019 Winner of Data Science Challenge
2017 BTW 2017 Best Paper Award
2017 EDBT 2017 Best Demonstration Award
2016 ACM SIGMOD 2016 Research Highlight Award
2014 Germany´s “Leading Digital Mind” (“Digitale Köpfe”) Award
2014 VLDB Best Paper award
2012 IBM Faculty Award, a Trusted-Cloud Award for Information Marketplaces by the German Ministry of Economics and Technology
2012 IBM Shared University Research Grant
2010 HP Open Innovation Award
2005 IBM Outstanding Technological Achievement Award
2005 Pat Goldberg Memorial Best Paper Award
2001 – 2006 Seventeen Invention Achievement Awards, IBM
2001 – 2006 Four Invention-Plateau Awards, IBM
2001 Best Mentor Award, IBM
2001 European Information Society and Technology Prize


  • Scientific Advisory Board of Software AG
  • Academic Advisory Council of Alexander von Humboldt Institute for Internet and Society’s (HIIG)
  • Gesellschaft für Informatik (GI) – FG Datenbanken
  • ACM Fellow
  • Autonomic Task Force within the IEEE Computer Society
  • Elected Trustee of the VLDB Endowment
  • Elected Secretary of the VLDB Endowment
  • Founding Member of the Big Data Value Association/Big Data Value PPP