All posts by Aske Plaat

About Aske Plaat

Professor of Data Science at Leiden University

Aske Plaat


Professor & Scientific Director
Department of Artificial Intelligence & Computer Science (LIACS)
Leiden University, Snellius 158
Niels Bohrweg 1, 2333 CA Leiden, The Netherlands

Research Interests
I am professor in artificial intelligence, and Scientific Director of the Institute of Artificial Intelligence and Computer Science (LIACS) of  Leiden University, the Netherlands, where I head the Sustainable Energy Learning Lab and the Reinforcement Learning Group. I want to improve human decision making; I work in reinforcement learning and games, and I am specifically interested in self-learning systems.  At LIACS cooperation and fun are key for creativity in research and personal contact with students. LIACS has a very active reinforcement learning group, please see our webpage. Please have a look at my recent books:

learning to play
deep reinforcement learning

I studied artificial intelligence under the guidance of Jonathan Schaeffer at the University of Alberta, Edmonton and Arie de Bruin & Wim Pijls at the Erasmus University, Rotterdam where I obtained my PhD in 1996. I worked with Charles Leiserson at the MIT Lab for Computer Science, Cambridge, Massachusetts, on the Cilk parallel computing system. Later I worked with Henri Bal at VU Amsterdam on scalable algorithms. In 2014 I joined Leiden University; in 2016 I was appointed scientific director of LIACS.

Longer Bio.

Snellius 158

All appointments and other requests are handled by Daniëlle Toret, 071-527.7061




Just do it – Nike slogan

Never express yourself more clearly than you are able to think – Niels Bohr

Dans les champs de l’observation le hasard ne favorise que les esprits prepares – Louis Pasteur
(often rendered as: Chance favors the prepared mind)

A language that doesn’t affect the way you think about programming, is not worth knowing – Alan Perlis

Try – Fail – Try again – Fail better