Dr. Florian Neukart is the Director of Volkswagen Group Advanced Technologies, which he started in 2019 and whose mission is to expand Volkswagen Group’s knowledge by exploring new domains to provide strategic guidance and technical solutions to tomorrow’s challenges. Before his current post, he was a Principal Scientist at the Volkswagen Group of America in San Francisco, where he has been researching in the fields of quantum computing and artificial intelligence, and the CTO of Volkswagen Group’s Data Lab in Munich, where he was responsible for its efforts in Research and Technology. He made various contributions to the fields of mathematics and computer science, specifically in optimization, quantum computing, and bio-inspired algorithms. In 2013, he joined Audi from SAP, where he worked as a data science consultant. Florian Neukart holds a Ph.D. in quantum computing and artificial intelligence from the Transilvania University of Brasov, as well as a Master’s degree in information technology from the CAMPUS02 University of Applied Sciences in Graz, and a Master’s degree in computer science from the Joanneum University of Applied Sciences in Kapfenberg. Neukart is also an assistant professor at Leiden University, where he works on quantum computing and artificial intelligence. He is the author of the book "Reverse Engineering the Mind - Consciously Acting Machines and Accelerated Evolution". He was one of the first researchers to propose and implement quantum neural networks, and among the first ones to solve real-world problems of society and environment utilizing quantum computing/ annealing. In 2014, Neukart was awarded for his work in biologically-inspired artificial intelligence software by the Science Park Austria.