Science Film Theory & Practice 2017 - 2018

12/18 r4D SNF  post production plan synthesis project

12/18 VR-360 Fairtrade Chocolate @uni osnabrück

Design session for a VR experiment on sustainable chocolate in Ghana, University Osnabrück.

12/18 Publications on Talking Heads and Videos at Universities

1. To Tease Somebody – Advertised Educational Intro vs. Lecture Videos: a quantiative study on the siginificant differences between advertisment videos and actual lecture videos.

2. Framing the Talking Head Challenges of Academic Broadcast Studios: on the challenges of video performance for academics.

11/18 Climate Change, Robopocalypse, Space Travel, Immortality?

We've designed a massive role play game about the future, climate change, robopocalypse, immortality and space travel from scratch. Mitigation, adaptation, investment in AI robots or basic research? Dependent on the choices of the different countries, the future of our planet drastically changes over the next 100 years. Facilitated at Brave New World conference in Leiden.

11/18 Manifesto Presentation @Uni utrecht

Manifesto for Videos in Higher Education, @Utrecht University; LERU conference.

10/18 How-to-do expert interviews on cam @USAC Guatemala

Teaching session with history and anthropology fellows and students of the Universidad San Carlos, Guatemala on the tricky situation of expert interviews with camera for research documentaries. Half-structured interview meets camera documentary interview style.

09/18 Awakening – a dance performance (weekend project)

What do you do over the weekend? The professional dancer, choreographer and lecturer Sarah Keusch and me took some time and initiative to follow our passion and create a short dance performance music video with some amazing dancers and kind helpers – after almost ten years again!

09/18 TedX Lausanne: Robots & Future Vision of Technology

Many see intelligent robots in the future as evil – taking over our livelihoods and eventually even taking our lives. Can it be the sci-fi stories that make us think this way? What do these stories, especially movies, tell us and make us believe?

11/18 Video-Abstracts for Scientific Papers  @LMU Munich

Presentation and Workshop with scientists, REASON program, Ludwig-Maximillians Universität Munich.

08/18 Mixed Reality: Tech meets Embodiment Research @MIT

Tech meets Research Presentation: "Watch your Tendons Stretch as you Kick - a Foot Controlled MR Experience" and a "Workshop on our VR-360 pilots"  Connected Learning Summit at the MIT, Boston,

08/18 Manifesto Videos in Higher Education

The Manifesto presents fifteen key statements on videos in higher education. See, comment, criticize on the whole manifesto:

06/18 Brettspiele in der Lehre @UniZürich

Postproduktion "Brettspiele in der Lehre. Das Forschungsthema Demokratie als Bildungsspiel".

05/18 Festival of Free Speech 'Mixed Reality & Deep Fake'

Workshop at the Festival of Free Speech: 'When Mixed Reality meets Deep Fake: 3rd Millennium Challenges for Audiovisual Data in Journalism', Beeld en Geluid.


Abstract: On the one hand, we have new promising technologies such as mixed reality (virtual reality, augmented reality and anything in between) in journalism, and indeed, various news platforms such as The Guardian, NYT or BBC increasingly produce mixed reality formats, currently mainly VR-360 videos. The immersion of mixed reality storytelling seems promising to bring the story to the recipients and therefore let them experience current issues or conflicts closer than ever before. On the other hand, we have the latest development of deep fake videos. Already today artificial intelligence can generate video-realistic fakes, increasing the strain to detect forgery on truth-committed organizations such as the World Press Photo Award. Now imagine how the extreme immersion of mixed reality could affect the recipients in the near future, when it meets deep fake technology.

Possibilities of using Virtual Reality and Mixed Reality in your work. How do NGOs bring stories closer to their audiences? How can it help us to better understand what’s going on around you in case of a disaster? How can this facilitate more immersive storytelling? Spindle Humanity Hub.

05/18 Publikation: Media Design for Videos in Higher Education

«Media Design Expertise for Videos in Higher Education: A Collection of Interviews with Lecturers, Filmmakers and Communication Experts from the Fields of Science Teaching, Media Design, Gesture Studies and Digital Education», open access, 2018. > researchgate

04/18 'Real Fake' - Signs of Time; Amsterdam

Presentation and Panel talk at 'Signs of Time': How can we still differentiate between truth and fake audiovisual data in Mixed Reality – or are we destined to live in a #FakeReality?

03/18 Corporate Sustainability #2 @ETH Zurich

New video productions with Prof. Dr. Volker Hoffmann, Departement of Management, Technology and Economic  "Corporate Sustainability".

03/18 Our Hololens App @Microsoft Story, Centre 4 Innovation

03/18 Dance Video

Old school times after almost ten years!!! What else to do over public holidays? We're gonna shot a dance music video again. Co-production project with the professional dancer, choreographer and lecturer Sarah Keusch and some other amazing dancers.

02/18 VR-360 at our New Media Lab, Centre for Innovation, The Hague

Have a look at our current innovative VR-360 experiences at the New Media Lab, Leiden University's Centre for Innovation:

12/17 Edubreak Video-annotation @ETH Zurich

Introducing audio- and visual data for learning about conservation management: using the edubreak plattform, students can access videos about the case studies, stakeholder interviews, sonification elements of the nature, in-depth audio interviews and photomontage of the different views from the scottish highlands.

10/17 vr CLASSROOM Conservation management

First Virtual Reality implementation in the ETH Zürich course about Ecosystem Management, 19.10.2017, Prof. Dr. Jaboury Ghazoul. The VR-360-Video gives a first impression from the field course about the ecosystems of scotland, including different case studies with stakeholders.

10/17 Co-design of Video-Abstracts for scientific Publications

Abstract: A number of leading scientific journals now allow researchers to publish video–abstracts alongside their peer–reviewed articles. Many of these video–abstracts are produced as an afterthought to the research process, either internally at the university or by external media companies, a choice that creates a trade–off between the scientific validity of the content and the appropriate use of the affordances of the medium.

This article argues in order for video to reach a level of scientific validity comparable to text, an integration of video into the research process itself is a precondition. Boundary spanners, who float between the rigorous work of scientists and the language of moving images, can transform the use of video from a communication technology to a new immutable mobile at the very heart of the scientific process itself.

07/17 3-days Workshop: Educational Video Production @ETH Zurich

Teaching a group of LET ETH staff about the art of video production in a three days hands-on workshop, July 2017.

06/17 LERU Video Workshop @LMU Munich

LERU Video Workshop, organized the E-University LMU Munich, Chiemsee, Presentation 'Videos in Higher Education'

05/17 Video-Abstract Benefiting from Open Innovation

Article: Zobel, Ann‐Kristin. "Benefiting from open innovation: A multidimensional model of absorptive capacity." Journal of Product Innovation Management 34.3 (2017): 269-288.

05/17 Barcamp '3rd Millennium Education – Design, Reflection, Aspiration'

Neuere Untersuchungen zeigen, dass zur Bewältigung der grossen Herausforderungen des 21. Jahrhunderts ein breiteres und neues Kompetenzverständnis (‚breadth of skills’) benötigt wird, bei dem Fähigkeiten wie Kreativität, Empathie, Kommunikation und Problemlösen Schlüsselqualifikationen darstellen. Bislang sind jedoch kaum systematische Konzepte zu einer curricularen Verankerung der ‚breadth of skills’ in der Hochschullehre vorhanden. Auch eine strategische und umfassende Implementierung neuer Lerntechnologien steht noch aus. Der Bedarf nach einer präziseren Verhältnisbestimmung von ‚breadth of skills’ und Lerntechnologien scheint hierbei zentral.
Die Einführung von Massiv Open Online Courses (MOOC’S) sind ein gutes Beispiel dafür, wie neue Lerntechnologien zwar schnell aufgegriffen und implementiert wurden, solche Massnahmen oftmals jedoch von der Angst motiviert sind, relevante Entwicklungen zu verpassen. Die ästhetischen, sozialen und kommunikativen Konsequenzen sind hierbei häufig nicht hinreichend geprüft. Insbesondere ist zu klären, wie sich die ‚Digitalisierung der Lehre’ und der Bedarf nach auch ästhetisch gehaltvollen Lernerfahrungen sinnvoll aufeinander beziehen lassen.


In vielen Disziplinen werden neue Technologien noch immer als blosse Erweiterungen der Tafel, des Lehrbuches und des Arbeitsheftes eingesetzt. Daher suchen wir nach Ansätzen, mit denen neue Technologien des Lernens implementiert werden können um eine kreativen Ausgestaltung und Weiterentwicklung von Learning Spaces zu ermoeglichen.


Das Barcamp hat zum Ziel, mit interessierten Teilnehmenden aus interdisziplinären Feldern solche und ähnliche Fragestellungen kritisch zu untersuchen. Die Methode des Barcamp (Unkonferenz) ermöglicht den Teilnehmenden, die relevanten Schwerpunkte des Tages selbst zu definieren, eigene Ideen und brennende Themenschwerpunkte vorzuschlagen und in reger Interaktion mit den weiteren Interessenten neue Entwürfe zu entwickeln.

11/18 Fakenews? Deepfakes!

We're experiencing a turmoil, a collective global crisis of mistrust in the digital world with nudging, uncertainty of data policy, #EvilCorporations, facial recognition. #Deepfakes add to the prevalent #FakeNews #AlternativeFacts. Presentation 'The Future of Trust in Images' at the multidisciplinary Brave New World Conference, Leiden Netherlands.

10/18 Ethnic minorities, state repression and Mayan guerilla movement

The ongoing fight for the rights of ethnic minorities. Mayan guerilla movement, political and economic inqualities, state reactions: On the road for the research film and VR 360-Video experience in Guatemala, with the fantastic team of the Prof. Ricardo Saenz de Tejada, Prof. Marta Juana López and students of the USAC. Project of the ETH Zurich, under the umbrella of the 'Research for Development' program of the Swiss National Science Foundation.

10/18 University Teachings: Sensitive Audiovisual Data in the Digital World

Have a look at the ongoing course with students from the Leiden University, TUDelt and Erasmus Rotterdam University on critical Audiovisual data in the digital world

09/18 Talking Heads, Body Image @TUDelft

What challenges does a lecturer face in front of the camera? Embodiment theory meets studio practice.

A Political Speculative design novel: Liquid Reign

My climate finance expert/ political economist/ speculative futurist/ lifetime partner published his first sci-fi speculative design novel based on todays technologies (including crazy citations of inspiration sources).


The main character, Daniel, an fairly aged Professor of Evolution-Philosophy takes us on a phantasy-full journey of our lives in, waking up from a coma in 2051. Topics include: liquiddemocracy; mixedreality; limitstowealth; privacy; AI; addiction; terrorism; hacking; anarchy; frogconservation and many more... 

out on amazon; see goodreads reviews here

08/18 Mixed Reality app tech-presentation: watch your tendons stretch @MIT boston

A Novel Approach Towards Anatomy Learning! Whereas other MR-productions for anatomy focus on 3D-visualization only, we assume that the involvement of the whole body of the user in the experience leads to more playful learning, and can be particularly helpful for concepts difficult to understand such as the movement dynamics of the lower feet. Moreover, the pure representation of a 3D-model in MR is consider an instance of a classical media fallacy of the affordances (see image comparison of anatomy learning in 1935 and the MR-app from 2015). While such pure visualizations add a spatial factor to the experience of traditional moving images, they do not play towards the strengths of MR, as they only marginally interact with the body of the learners.

08/18 360-VR Videos Connected Learning Summit @MIT BOSTON

Through recent advanced technological development, media formats such as VR360-videos for VR seem promising and enter the educational sector rapidly. Although VR360-videos resemble traditional videography in some of their affordances, innovative storytelling, playful elements and

strategies for directing the gaze-attention of the recipient are genuinely different and still need to be explored. In fact, standard VR360-videos are a rather passive medium besides the option to turn the head. We at the Centre for Innovation at Leiden University believe, that a majority of educational topics could benefit from more interaction and playful elements in VR360. Hence, we’re currently developing several projects with playful interactivity in VR in which we try to overcome the passiveness. You can find the MIT presentation here

'Audiovisual Data in the Digital World'; Course Fall18

The course will be part of the interdisciplinary minor program "Responsible Innovation" for students of the Leiden University, Delft University and Rotterdam Erasmus University.


Course Description:

"Photography is truth. The cinema is truth twenty-four times per second" (Jean-Luc Godard, 1960). So what about 360-Virtual Reality, at 120 frames per second?
In the digital world, audiovisual data is everywhere. From photographs to videos, games to mixed reality - we're truly living in an audiovisual age. On one hand, new media technologies such as Augmented Reality or 'deepfakes' are in a state of permanent becoming. Innovative formats continuously enter the market place of ideas long before the old ones are fully understood. On the other hand, in this era of fake news, our audiovisual data has become much easier to manipulate than ever before. In this course, we will explore current digital trends and critically investigate the impact of new media technologies on society. Lectures will reflect on various cases of audiovisual data in the digital sphere such as Virtual and Augmented Reality, AI-robots in moving images, #deepfakes, hacking, webbased-interactive hybridformats from the perspective of audiovisual data in academic research.

08/18 SNF research-doc Production with expert statements in zurich, berne, lausanne and geneva

As part of the full-lenght research documentary on social conflicts, we've put our researchers in front of the camera. They did a fantastic job! From left top on; Nils Rosemann (DEZA), Lars-Erik Cederman (ETH Zurich); Elizabeth Pruegl; Christelle Rigual (both Geneva Graduate Institute).

06/18 Keynote 'Video Killed the Lecture Star'

05/18 AR+VR Conference & Expo in California

Excited to be at the AWE USA, Santa Clara, California. Takeaway paraphrased: "You only need a pen and paper [and a strong character] for good storytelling" Jason Katz, Pixar.

03/18 Neuroscience + LXDesign, @Radboud-Universität

Conference presentation of new research insights: "The speaker's body image and schema in educational videos"


Today, videos are a part of most online learning experiences. But speaking in front of a camera is frequently found challenging by educators. Therefore, understanding the difficulties to further support our educators is a necessity. 

02/18 Didactica Workshop @UNIZH / ETH Zurich

Didactia course: 'Bildungsvideos in der Lehre' , (engl. 'Videos in Higher Education') together with Katharina Draeger.

11/17 'The Diversity of Empathy' @University of Basel & SLSAeu

The documentary film was produced during the "Empathies 2017 Conference", European Society of Literature, Science and the Arts, @University of Basel. Video production was kindly supported by Eikones.

11/17 Educational Videos Imperial College London

Videographer & Reseacher Roundtable at Imperial College London, 29th of November.

11/17 AI Storytelling and Character Development in Today's Movies

Conference Presentation / Workshop at 'Brave New World', 2./3. November 2017.


While new series such as Westworld, Black Mirror or Humans and movies such as Her, ExMachina or Blade Runner 2049 are on the raise once again, our storytelling around artificial intelligence has hardly changed. Dystopian worlds dominate across the board, including also in viral webvideos such as Hyperreality or Strange Beasts. Deeply rooted in ancient mediterranean cultures, the thread of the evil AI can be traced back to Golem, Pygmalion, Hephaestus and followed through the history of storytelling via Frankenstein, The Sorcerer's Apprentice, R.U.R. or Metropolis. While real AI is taking more responsibility in various fields across the human experiences, such a cultural imprinting of contemporary moving images will leave traces in the way that AI is approached, integrated and reflected in our society. In the workshop, we will explore patterns of storytelling and character development of AI in todays movies.

11/17 LERU Research @University of Milano

Presentation of research paper, LERU (League of European Research Universities): "To tease somebody - a Comparision Study of Intro and Lecture Videos"

09/17 VR/AR Workshop @University of Naples Federico

International Conference Educational Media Paper presentation: "To tease somebody – Significant Differences Between Advertised Educational Course Intro Videos and Actual Lecture Videos" and co-teaching workshop: "AR and VR in Higher Education"

07/17 Corporate Sustainability, Videos SusTec @ETH Zurich

07/17 Field Course Media Scotland @ETH Zurich

ETH Zurich Innovedum Project: Production of digital media (videos, soundscapes, photographs, 360°-VR)

07/17 Workshop about Science Videos @ZHDK

Workshop about "Science Videos"; 20th of July 2017; For a research group at the ZHdK (Academy of Arts and Design Zurich) and their research project: Research Video – annotated videos as a new standard of publishing practice-based and artistic research. ZHdK Research Project.


Im Zuge der Digitalisierung werden schriftliche Publikationen zunehmend von Videos begleitet. Renommierte Journals bieten Forschenden schon heute die Option, Abstracts auch im Videoformat einzureichen. Das Video als Medium des Bewegtbildes bringt spezifische Eigenschaften mit, das zusätzliche Möglichkeiten bietet und dabei anderen Paradigmen folgt als ein schriftlicher Text. Diese sind zum Beispiel die parallele Bild-Ton Narration, animierte Datenvisualisierungen, visuelle Dokumentationen des Arbeitsprozesses oder des methodischen Vorgehens. Damit auch dieses Medium mit der strukturellen Sicherheit eines Abstracts erschlossen werden kann, bietet der Einführungsvortrag neue Einblicke in das strategische Potential der Optimierung wissenschaftlicher Videos.

Als weitergehendes Angebot besteht für Forschende der LMU die Möglichkeit, am 19. Mai 2017 an einem Workshop mit ihren eigenen Forschungsthemen teilzunehmen, um ein tieferes Verständnis der Konzeptualisierung von Videos zu erfahren und ein Konzept für ein konkretes Projekt auszuarbeiten.

05/17 'Framing the Talking Head' @Universidad Carlos III Madrid

EMOOCs2017, Madrid, 22.-25.05.2017, Workshop "Framing the Talking Head – biggest challenges: Behind and in front of the camera"

04/17 'Into the Forest. Co-Design of Science and Film'

Reutemann Jeanine.: Into the Forest. Über die gegenseitige epistemische Unterwanderung von Wissenschaft und Film, in: Marcus Maeder (Hg.), Kunst, Wissenschaft, Natur. Zur Ästhetik und Epistemologie der künsterlisch-wissenschaftlichen Naturbeobachtung, Bielefeld: Transcript, April 2017: 113-168.

03/17 'Enter the void' – Cinema Introduction Speech @Stadtkino Basel

Einführungsvortrag zum Film "Enter the Void" von Gaspar Noe, im Kontext von Chacun son Cinéma, Stadtkino Basel, 14.03.17