The committe highlighted her unmatched presentation skills and pioneering work in the emerging field of combined symbolic with subsymbolic reasoning.

With the second edition of popular student competition, we continue the tradition of putting young researchers in the spotlight and motivating them to improve their presentation skills. The winner of AIC 2023 Student Paper Award is Michaela Urbanovská, third-year Ph.D. student under the supervision of Antonín Komenda. She succeeded with her paper Neural networks for model-free and scale-free automated planning that was published in Springer's Knowledge and Information Systems. As the winner, she receives 1 000 EUR prize money.

Presentations of the three finalists were recorded for our YouTube channel.

Research evaluation

According to the award committee, Michaela's work is a milestone for combining symbolic with subsymbolic reasoning. From a planning perspective this is of growing interest as there are more and more international workshops and conferences emerging in this area. The journal article of Michaela and Antonín Komenda was a pioneering step towards this direction. It was restricted to grid domains, but opened future research avenues for generalization that she is working on now. The work fits well into the current times where neural networks that do excel but lack trust and explainability.

What makes the award unambigous was the impact of the journal and her unmatched presentation skills. She presented professionally animated slides with takeaways for the specialists, but at the same time staying accessible and motivating for the broader audience.

Muchaela receiving the diploma at a small ceremony durign the departrment's annual BBQ.