PhD Student (f/m/d) - AI for Sustainability PhD Project in cooperation with KIT

We help the world run better

Our company culture is focused on helping our employees enable innovation by building breakthroughs together. How? We focus every day on building the foundation for tomorrow and creating a workplace that embraces differences, values flexibility, and is aligned to our purpose-driven and future-focused work. We offer a highly collaborative, caring team environment with a strong focus on learning and development, recognition for your individual contributions, and a variety of benefit options for you to choose from. Apply now!


What you'll do


As PhD student, you will self-steered identify research opportunities and gaps in making businesses more sustainable by leveraging artificial intelligence (AI). Following the design science research methodology, you will first systematically explore the problem space of digital sustainability transformation of organizations. Subsequently, you will come up with prototypical solutions in the form of AI-based software artifacts and rigorously evaluate them in a practical context in cooperation with SAP customers and/or partners. Furthermore, you will deliver design knowledge for the field of AI for Sustainability, e.g. in the form of design principles.


You will publish at least three scientific contributions at top conferences and/or journals and include the most relevant research outcomes into Sustainability Innovation Engagement team deliverables within the Growth Unit Sustainability of the Office of SAP’s CEO.


The PhD project will be performed in cooperation with the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) and its human-centered systems lab (h-lab).


What you bring


  • PhD Student / doctoral candidate (f/m/d) of a university or a university of applied sciences, preferred fields of study information systems/business informatics, industrial engineering or computer science with scientific interest in the topic sustainability and/or AI, in which the dissertation will be written
  • Computer skills: Python, AI, ML, GenAI, LLM’s
  • Language skills: fluent in English
  • Soft skills: team player, creative, geek in AI, programming and as a plus, sustainability.
  • Others: record of successful project experience in software engineering, positive grades in latest exams or master degree (at least 1.9)


Meet your team


The Sustainability Innovation Engagement team, located in the newly created Sustainability growth unit, is mandated to support the digital sustainability transformation of SAP customers. This is achieved through the E2E orchestration of ecosystem innovation, government/academic funded projects, and accelerated organic innovation incubation with a holistic focus on sustainability.

The SAP Sustainability Innovation Engagement team is present in multiple locations around the globe and works closely with product teams and stakeholders across the internal and external value chain to orchestrate innovation.


The human-centered systems lab (h-lab) headed by Prof. Dr. Alexander Maedche (Research Group “Information Systems I") focuses in research, education, and innovation on designing human-centered systems for better work and life.  The mission of h-lab is to create impactful knowledge for designing human-centered systems for human productivity and well-being through relevant and rigor scientific research. The research performed at h-lab contributes to the fields of human-computer interaction (HCI) and information systems (IS). 


Please keep in mind that the hiring for PhD candidates at SAP demands a previous approval by the university as well as the supervising professor.


Your set of application documents MUST contain a cover letter and a resume in table form and should include school leaving certificates, certificate of enrollment, current university transcript of records, copies of any academic degrees already earned, and if available, references from former employers (including internships). Please also describe your experience and skills in foreign languages and computer programs / programming languages.


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We build breakthroughs together

SAP innovations help more than 400,000 customers worldwide work together more efficiently and use business insight more effectively. Originally known for leadership in enterprise resource planning (ERP) software, SAP has evolved to become a market leader in end-to-end business application software and related services for database, analytics, intelligent technologies, and experience management. As a cloud company with 200 million users and more than 100,000 employees worldwide, we are purpose-driven and future-focused, with a highly collaborative team ethic and commitment to personal development. Whether connecting global industries, people, or platforms, we help ensure every challenge gets the solution it deserves. At SAP, we build breakthroughs, together.


We win with inclusion

SAP’s culture of inclusion, focus on health and well-being, and flexible working models help ensure that everyone – regardless of background – feels included and can run at their best. At SAP, we believe we are made stronger by the unique capabilities and qualities that each person brings to our company, and we invest in our employees to inspire confidence and help everyone realize their full potential. We ultimately believe in unleashing all talent and creating a better and more equitable world.

SAP is proud to be an equal opportunity workplace and is an affirmative action employer. We are committed to the values of Equal Employment Opportunity and provide accessibility accommodations to applicants with physical and/or mental disabilities. If you are interested in applying for employment with SAP and are in need of accommodation or special assistance to navigate our website or to complete your application, please send an e-mail with your request to Recruiting Operations Team:

For SAP employees: Only permanent roles are eligible for the SAP Employee Referral Program, according to the eligibility rules set in the SAP Referral Policy. Specific conditions may apply for roles in Vocational Training.


Requisition ID: 387308  | Work Area: Software-Research  | Expected Travel: 0 - 10%  | Career Status: Student  | Employment Type: Intern   | Additional Locations: #LI-Hybrid

Requisition ID:  387308
Posted Date:  May 18, 2024
Work Area:  Software-Research
Career Status:  Student
Employment Type:  Intern
Expected Travel:  0 - 10%

Walldorf, DE, 69190

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