Participants of the university in the international "AiTalents" programme

Hachenburg students win prizes at AI boot camp

The fact that new technologies from the field of artificial intelligence (AI) can be used to develop solutions to acutely relevant and highly varied problems was just one of the many insights that 25 Hachenburg students gained by participating in the “AiTalents” programme. Another thing that they were able to experience was working in interdisciplinary and mostly international teams: participants not only learned how to deal with challenges specific to communication, but also encountered new ways of approaching and looking at particular topics.

Multi-stage selection process with 500 applicants from 57 countries

The online-based, nine-week boot camp “AiTalents” was launched by TechQuartier, an innovation network based in Frankfurt and an institutional partner of the Bundesbank. Focused on the use of artificial intelligence and machine learning (ML), the programme is aimed at students and young professionals from all over the world. Just under 200 participants were selected from over 500 applicants from 57 countries in a multi-stage selection process. With 25 students, the Bundesbank University of Applied Sciences was relatively well represented. Besides the opportunities to exchange knowledge and ideas with young adults from other countries and institutions, the main reason for the students’ decision to participate was their interest in topics relating to AI and ML as well as the direct practical relevance of the programme.

Bundesbank students very successful  

The participants were divided into teams of four to five people on average, taking into account their expertise and social skills. Each team was then assigned to one of eleven start-ups in total, which outlined various challenges based on their business focus and also provided datasets. The teams worked on a variety of tasks, which ranged from assessing enterprises’ performance regarding sustainability based on news data to illustrating the links between legal texts and banking regulation.
While each team gradually developed a solution or a product, they were accompanied and supported by a coach. Further down the line, they were also able to ask technical experts for advice, especially on programming-related questions and issues. On top of that, TechQuartier provided additional learning material in the form of explanatory videos and articles relevant to the task the teams were working on.
Professor Pankratz from the Bundesbank’s University of Applied Sciences supported and motivated the Hachenburg students who were participating. Despite the time pressure and complexity of the tasks increasing as time went on, the 25 Bundesbank participants remained enthusiastic and committed right through to the end of the competition. Almost half of them reached the final stage of the competition with their teams and therefore had the opportunity to present the solution they had developed to a panel of top-ranking experts. The top three teams were awarded €10,000, €7,000 and €5,000 in prize money. 

Two Bundesbank students took second and third place with their groups, topping off the outstanding overall performance of the Hachenburg students. 

Hachenburg student impressions

By participating in AiTalents, my international team and I were able to gain valuable insights into the importance of artificial intelligence. It was fascinating to extend the use of these technologies to combat money laundering in the financial sector.” – Maximilian Moehrs

“The programme has shown me agile teamwork from a new angle and has motivated me to discover the major potential of artificial intelligence for banking compliance and banking supervision – including at the Bundesbank.” – Johannes Alban

“I found the opportunity to meet many interesting people with very different specialist backgrounds during the competition to be a great asset. I also found it exciting to tackle highly relevant issues regarding AI and sustainability by analysing the ESG performance of firms and banks.” – Janina Herbert