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Pascal Bercher is the winner of the ICAPS Best Dissertation Award 2019

Ulm University

The ICAPS Best Dissertation Awards honor outstanding PhD theses in any area of automated planning and scheduling.

The Awards Committee praises the following accomplishments:

The dissertation stands out by covering a lot of ground:
1) It formalizes and develops planning with hierarchical task networks (HTNs) toward a hybrid formalism that includes partial-order causal link planning;
2) it presents complexity results for the resulting problem classes;
3) it develops heuristics for hybrid planning;
4) it describes the implementation of a hybrid planner and its integration into a companion device that assists in the set-up of a home theater system; and
5) it performs a user study to evaluate the system.
The dissertation also rekindled interest in HTN planning by putting it on firm formal ground and connecting it to recent developments in classical planning.