Petra Schaper Rinkel has been Vice-Rector for Digital Transformation at the University of Graz since 1 October 2019, where she is also Professor of Science and Technology Studies .
From 2009 to 2019, she has been at the AIT – Austrian Institute of Technology, where she mainly has been responsible for EU projects on science, technology and innovation policy and foresight projects. At the AIT she was also responsible for the establishment of Foresight and Technology Assessment at the Austrian Parliament and responsible for the conceptual orientation and the programm development of the research field Societal Futures. Prior to joining AIT, she was a senior lecturer at the Technical University of Berlin and a principal investigator at Freie Universität Berlin. She earned her doctoral degree in 2003 from the Department of Political Sciences at Freie Universität Berlin, writing on the interrelationship between European integration, digital transformation and networks of governance of science, technology and innovation on the European level. In addition to holding research positions and lecturer positions at Humboldt University, Freie Universität Berlin, Technical University of Berlin and the University of Innsbruck, she also designed and managed governmental programs to support microsystems and other technologies at VDI/VDE-IT, a project management organization commissioned by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF).
Her current areas of research include
- Innovation Policy & Governance of Emerging Technologies (including Artificial Intelligence, Quantum Technology, SynBio and Nanotechnology)
- Societal Futures, Foresight, Anticipation, Foresight Methods and methods of forward looking activities
- innovation, science and technology studies (STS), the political implications of emerging technologies,
- Technology Assessment.
Other broader research interests include governance theories, governmentality, the political economy of emerging technologies, and the history of future thinking.
Main current research interests are:
- Digital Transformation
- Artificial Intelligence
- Future of Research and Innovation
- Responsible Research and Innovation