Filippo Fabrocini

Researcher at Center for Italian Studies of Tongji University (CSIUT)

Professor of College of Design and Innovation, Tongji University; Director of Tongji Sustainable AI Lab; Co-founder of Tongji AI Art Lab


Prof. Fabrocini has cumulated 25+ years of theoretical/practical experience in “translating” AI technologies in business practices, engaging and delivering projects on Cognitive Computing, Machine Learning, Big Data, Business Analytics, Knowledge Management, Semantic Search, and Bioinformatics. All these projects have spanned over several industries including Automotive, Banking, Fashion, Health, Travel & Transportation, and Public Government. He likes to say that a new algorithm, or a new computational tool, are not innovation till they are going to solve real-world problems and to improve the everyday life. Prof. Fabrocini is the author of more than 30 publications including three books spanning over areas such as Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, and Mathematical Logic. Recently he has started to be interested in the social and ethical implications of AI.


Prof. Filippo Fabrocini has been extensively taught in Italy and in China. He has delivered courses about Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, with a special focus on Reinforcement Learning/Deep Learning, and Foundations of Cognitive Sciences.

Academic and social post

He is a member of the of the “Task Force China” (Subgroup: Artificial Intelligence) of the Italian Ministry of Economic Development, a member of the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence and a member of the Cognitive Science Society.

Educational Background

Filippo Fabrocini has got a Bachelor degree and a Master degree in Philosophy, with a specialization in Mathematical Logic. He has got as well a Master degree in Cognitive Sciences and a Doctoral degree in Philosophy.

Working Experience

Prof. Fabrocini has been Senior Researcher at IBM Research (Rome, Italy/San Jose, USA), Visiting Researcher in the Computer Science Dep. at Carnegie Mellon University (Pittsburgh, USA), Full Professor at the Gregorian University (Rome, Italy), General Manager of the IBM Milan/Rome Business Innovation Centers, Full Professor at Sichuan University (Chengdu, China), and Full Professor at Beijing Institute of Technology (Beijing, China).

Selected Publications

  • F. Fabrocini, " The SEL Project. An Application of AI Technology to the Preliminary Parts of Civil Proceedings", in Proceedings of the International Conference on Logic, Computer, Science and Law, Firenze, 1989.

    (A paper dedicated to the design and the implementation of a logical model of 31 articles of the Italian Civil Code and the corresponding jurisprudence. The model included as well a hypothetical reasoning system.)

  • L. Di Pace, F. Fabrocini, "Learning from Observation in Noisy Environments via Integration of EBL and SBL Techniques", in Proceedings of the Ninth European Conference on Artificial Intelligence, ECAI, London, Pitman Publishing, 1990.

    (A paper making use of J. Pearl’s Belief Networks. It has been among the first papers to apply Pearl’s ideas.)

  • L. Di Pace, F. Fabrocini, Tecnologia dell'Apprendimento, Roma, Franco Angeli, 1990.

    (This book is particularly relevant because it has been the first university textbook to be published in Italy about Machine Learning.)

  • L. Di Pace, F. Fabrocini, G. Bolis, "Shift of Bias in Learning from Drug Compounds", in Proceedings of the European Working Session on Learning, EWSL, Berlin, Springer-Verlag, 1991.

    (An important paper among the first ones to introduce the notion of “bias” applied to Machine Learning and the technology for shifting automatically bias during the learning process.)

  • G. Bolis, L. Di Pace, F. Fabrocini, "A Machine Learning Approach to Computer-Aided Molecular Design", in International Journal of Computer-Aided Molecular Design, 5, 1991.

    (This paper is still a milestone in the Computer-Aided Molecular Design area: it is the first paper to apply Machine Learning techniques to the design of new drugs.)

  • L. Di Pace, F. Fabrocini, Knowledge-Based Molecular Retrieval System and Method Using a Hierarchy of Molecular Structures in the Knowledge Base, U.S. Patent, N. 5,418,944, 1992.

    (IBM patent about Knowledge-Based Retrieval Techniques related to 3D representations of molecular structures.)

  • F. Fabrocini, "Die Rolle der Praxis bei der Bildung der kognitiven Strukturen", in J. Quitterer & E. Runggaldier, eds. Der Neue Naturalismus - Eine Herausforderung an das christliche Menschenbild, Stuttgart, Kohlhammer, 1999.

    (A paper making use of the notion of “action” for interpreting cognitive development.)

  • F. Fabrocini, “Why cannot we say ‘there are 100 objects’? Some remarks on Wittgenstein’s notion of ‘formal concept’” (2019 submission).

    (A new interpretation of Wittgenstein’s philosophy of mathematics and its role in the Tractatus.)

Honors and Awards

An incomplete list of awards that Filippo Fabrocini has received in his career includes the following:

  • IBM Outstanding Technical Award 1987      (in recognition of his contribution to the area of Logic Programming)

  • IBM Outstanding Technical Award 1991      (in recognition of his contribution to the area of Machine Learning)

  • IBM Client-Value Outstanding Technical Achievement Award 2005 (in recognition of his contribution to the Knowledge Management/Text Mining project carried out with the Italian      Prime Minister Office)

  • Italy Prime Minister Office Honor Award      2005 (in recognition of his contribution to the Knowledge Management/Text Mining project carried out with the Italian Prime Minister Office)

2018-2019 activities

  • 2019: Speaker at the International Forum on Innovation and Emerging Industries Development (Shanghai, China)

  • 2019: Speaker at the School of Design & Innovation of Tongji University (Shanghai, China)

  • 2019: Speaker at the conference “Science & Art from Leonardo’s Viewpoint” organized by the Italian Consulate in Shanghai (Shanghai, China)

  • 2018: Speaker at the conference “Digital Innovation” organized by the China-Italy Chamber of Commerce (Shanghai, China)

  • 2018: Interview at the Guangdong TV program titled “WetalkTV” hosted by Miss Wu Ting