Keyan Ghazi-Zahedi
Max Planck Institute for Mathematics in the Sciences
Information Theory of Cognitive Systems
Inselstrasse 22
04103 Leipzig

Phone: +49 (0) 341 9959 545
Fax: +49 (0) 341 9959 555
Office: A03 06
I'm current a resident post-doctoral fellow at the

Santa Fe Institute
1399 Hyde Park Road
Santa Fe, New Mexico 87501
United States of America
My SFI profile


Grundlagen der Robotik    (SS16)
(last updated: 28.07.2016)
    Ort: SG 2-14
    Zeit: Dienstags, 13:00-15:00
       August: 09.08. - 26.08.
       September: 19.09. - 29.09.
       November: 01.11. - 30.11.
       Dezember: 01.12. - 16.12.
Grundlagen [pdf]
Kinematik [pdf]
Dynamik [pdf]
Mechanik & Motoren [pdf]
Sensoren [pdf]
Zustandschätzung & Sensorfusion [pdf]
Radgetriebene Systeme [pdf]
Weltmodellierung [pdf]
SLAM [pdf]
Embodied AI [pdf]
Evolutionary Robotics [pdf]

    Seminararbeiten: [pdf]     Videos: [YouTube]
    Source code:
Dienstag 13:15 - 13:45 Felix Helfer Resilient Machines Through Continuous Self-Modeling
Dienstag 13:45 - 14:15 Jan Witte Simple or complex bodies? Trade-offs in exploiting body morphology for control
Dienstag 14:15 - 14:45 Falk Müller Collective Transport of Complex Objects by Simple Robots: Theory and Experiments
Mittwoch 13:15 - 13:45 Enrico Reich Design and Fabrication of Soft Artificial Skin Using Embedded Microchannels and Liquid Conductors
Mittwoch 13:45 - 14:15 Ole Hadan Controlled Flight of a Biologically Inspired, Insect-Scale Robot
Donnerstag 13:15 - 13:45 Philipp Freick Morphological evolution of physical robots through model-free phenotype development
Donnerstag 13:45 - 14:15 Elias Mueller Morphological Computation and Morphological Control: Steps Toward a Formal Theory and Applications
Donnerstag 14:15 - 14:45 Jörg Schliesser Morphological Computation of Multi-Gaited Robot Locomotion Based on Free Vibration

Reinforcement Learning - An Introduction    (SS15)



Ghazi-Zahedi, K. ; Haeufle, D. F. B. ; Montúfar, G. ; Schmitt, S. and N. Ay: Evaluating morphological computation in muscle and DC-motor driven models of human hopping movements. Frontiers in robotics and AI, 3 (2016), 42 [DOI] [ARXIV]

Montúfar, G. ; Ay, N. and K. Ghazi-Zahedi: Geometry and expressive power of conditional restricted Boltzmann machines. Journal of machine learning research, 16 (2015), p. 2405-2436 MIS-Preprint: 16/2014 [ARXIV] [FREELINK]

Montúfar, G. ; Ghazi-Zahedi, K. and N. Ay: A theory of cheap control in embodied systems. PLoS computational biology, 11 (2015) 9, e1004427 MIS-Preprint: 70/2014 [DOI] [ARXIV]

Ay, N. and K. Ghazi-Zahedi: On the causal structure of the sensorimotor loop. Guided self-organization : inception / M. Prokopenko (ed.). Springer, 2014. - P. 261-294 (Emergence, complexity, and computation) [DOI]

Ay, N. and K. Ghazi-Zahedi: Causal effects for prediction and deliberative decision making of embodied systems. Advances in cognitive neurodynamics III : proceedings of the 3rd International Conference on Cognitive Neurodynamics 2011 ; [June 9-13, 2011, Hilton Niseko Village, Hokkaido, Japan] / Y. Yamaguchi (ed.). Springer, 2013. - P. 499-506 (Advances in cognitive neurodynamics) MIS-Preprint: 22/2011 [DOI]

Ghazi-Zahedi, K. and N. Ay: Quantifying morphological computation. Entropy, 15 (2013) 5, p. 1887-1915 MIS-Preprint: 11/2013 [DOI] [ARXIV]

Ghazi-Zahedi, K. ; Martius, G. and N. Ay: Linear combination of one-step predictive information with an external reward in an episodic policy gradient setting : a critical analysis. Frontiers in psychology / Frontiers in cognitive science, 4 (2013), 801 MIS-Preprint: 60/2013 [DOI] [ARXIV]

Ghazi-Zahedi, K. ; Ay, N. and R. Der: Higher coordination with less control : a result of information maximization in the sensorimotor loop. Adaptive behavior, 18 (2010) 3/4, p. 338-355 [DOI] [ARXIV]

Ghazi-Zahedi, K. ; Twickel, A. v. and F. Pasemann: YARS : A physical 3D simulator for evolving controllers for real robots. Simulation, modeling, and programming for autonomous robots : first international conference, SIMPSR 2008 Venice, Italy, November 3-7, 2008 proceedings / S. Carpin... (eds.). Springer, 2008. - P. 75-86 (Lecture notes in artificial intelligence ; 5325) [DOI]

Ghazi-Zahedi, K. and F. Pasemann: Adaptive behavior control by self-regulating neurons. 50 years of artificial intelligence : essays dedicated to the 50th aniversary of artificial intelligence / M. Lungarella... (eds.). Springer, 2007. - P. 196-205 (Lecture notes in computer science ; 4850 : Lecture notes in artificial intelligence) [DOI]

Markelic, I. and K. Ghazi-Zahedi: An evolved neural network for fast quadrupedal locomotion. Advances in climbing and walking robots : Proceedings of the 10th International Conference (CLAWAR 2007), Singapore, 16 - 18 July 2007 / M. Xie (ed.). World Scientific, 2007. - P. 65-72 [DOI]

Hülse, M. ; Wischmann, S. and K. Ghazi-Zahedi: ISEE : a framework for the evolution and analysis of recurrent neural networks for embodied agents. ERCIM news, 64 (2006), p. 33-34[FREELINK]

Ghazi-Zahedi, K. ; Hülse, M. and F. Pasemann: Evolving neurocontrollers in the RoboCup domain. Robotik 2004 : Leistungsstand, Anwendungen, Visionen, Trends : Tagung München, 17. und 18. Juni 2004 : Deutschland Robotik 2004 VDI-Verlag, 2004. - P. 63-70

Ghazi-Zahedi, K. ; Hülse, M. and F. Pasemann: Evolution nicht-linearer Kontroller für mobile Roboter in dynamischen Umgebungen. Automatisierungstechnische Praxis : atp, 2004 (2004) 10, p. 94-100

Hülse, M. ; Ghazi-Zahedi, K. and F. Pasemann: Representing robot-environment interactions by dynamical features of neuro-controllers. Anticipatory behavior in adaptive learning systems : foundations, theories, and systems / M. V. Butz (ed.). Springer, 2003. - P. 222-242 (Lecture notes in computer science ; 2684) [DOI]

Pasemann, F. ; Hild, M. and K. Ghazi-Zahedi: SO(2)-networks as neural oscillators. Computational methods in neural modeling : 7th International Work-Conference on Artificial and Natural Neural Networks, IWANN 2003 Maó, Menorca, Spain, June 3û6, 2003 Proceedings, Part I / J. Mira (ed.). Springer, 2003. - P. 144-151 (Lecture notes in computer science ; 2686) [DOI]

Pasemann, F. ; Hülse, M. and K. Ghazi-Zahedi: Evolved neurodynamics for robot control. 11th European Symposium on Artificial Neural Networks, ESANN 2003 : proceedings ; Bruges, Belgium, April 23-24-25, 2003 / M. Verleysen (ed.). d-side, 2003. - P. 439-444

Breithaupt, R. ; Dahnke, J. ; Ghazi-Zahedi, K. ; Hertzberg, J. and F. Pasemann: Robo-Salamander : an approach for the benefit of both robotics and biology. Proceedings of the fifth International Conference on Climbing and Walking Robots and their Supporting Technologies : CLAWAR 2002, 25 - 27 September 2002 / P. Bidaud (ed.). Professional Engineering Publishing, 2002. - P. 55-62

Plagge, M. ; Diebold, B. ; Günther, R. ; Ihlenburg, J. ; Jung, D. ; Ghazi-Zahedi, K. and A. Zell: Design and evaluation of the T-Team of the University of Tuebingen for RoboCup98. RoboCup-98 : Robot Soccer World Cup II / M. Asada... (eds.). Springer, 1999. - P. 464-472 (Lecture notes in computer science ; 1604) [DOI]


Montúfar, G. ; Ghazi-Zahedi, K. and N. Ay: Information theoretically aided reinforcement learning for embodied agents. [ARXIV]

Ghazi-Zahedi, K. and J. Rauh: Quantifying morphological computation based on an information decomposition of the sensorimotor loop. MIS-Preprint: 21/2015 [ARXIV] [FREELINK]

Montúfar, G. ; Ghazi-Zahedi, K. and N. Ay: Geometry and determinism of optimal stationary control in partially observable markov decision processes. MIS-Preprint: 22/2016 [ARXIV]

Pasemann, F. ; Ghazi-Zahedi, K. and M. Rohde: Adaptive behavior control by self-regulating neurons. MIS-Preprint: 55/2004


Ghazi-Zahedi, K. : Self-regulating neurons : a model for synaptic plasticity in artificial recurrent neural networks. Dissertation, Universität Osnabrück, 2009[FREELINK]

Ghazi-Zahedi, K. : Analysis and visualistion of social networks. Masterarbeit, Universität Tübingen, 2001

Program Committee

ALIFE XV , July 4-8 2016, Cancun, Mexico.
ECAL 2015 , 20th - 24th of July, 2015, York, UK, (Special Session on Quantifying Embodiment).

Workshops & Special Sessions & Working Groups

Working Group on Morphological Computation
Santa Fe Institute, Sep 12th - 14th, 2017.
Special Session on Quantifying Embodiment
13th European Conference on Artificial Life (ECAL 2015), York Centre for Complex Systems Analysis at the University of York, 20th - 24th of July, 2015.
Information Theory in Artificial Life
Satellite Workshop of the 13th European Conference on Artificial Life (ECAL 2015), York Centre for Complex Systems Analysis at the The University of York, 20th of July, 2015.
Information Theoretic Incentives for Artificial Life
Satellite Workshop of the 14th International Conference on the Synthesis and Simulation of Living Systems (ALife 2014), Javits Center, New York, 30. of July
Conceptual and Mathematical Foundations of Embodied Intelligence
MPI MIS, Leipzig, March, 2013

Special Issues / Guest Editor

Special issue on Information Theoretic Incentives for Cognitive Systems in Entropy

Review Editor

Frontiers in Neurorobotics
Frontiers in Robotics and AI, Computational Intelligence section

Some virtual creaturs

For more, please visit my YouTube page.
Short CV
02/11 - present Post-Doc, MIS MPI Leipzig
05/17 - 10/17 Resident Post-Doc, Santa Fe Institute
11/08 - 01/11 Post-Doc scholarship, MIS MPI Leipzig
05/07 - 10/08 PhD scholarship, MIS MPI Leipzig
03/02 - 04/07 DFG research position at Fraunhofer AIS/IAIS, Sankt Augustin, Germany
03/05 - 04/07 EU funded research position at Fraunhofer AIS/IAIS, Sankt Augustin, Germany
03/02 - 04/07 Research fellow at the Fraunhofer AIS/IAIS
01/05 - 12/05 Deputy Department Head, Department INDY, Fraunhofer AIS
09/01 - 02/02 Software engineer, Robotwatch Technologies, Berlin, Germany
08/2001 Diploma in computer science, University Tuebingen, Germany
Research interests
Embodied Artificial Intelligence
Information Theory
Morphological Computation
Local learning / synaptic plasticity
Neural Networks Dynamics
Evolutionary Robotics
Private homepage can be found [here]
K. Ghazi-Zahedi,  Email:
Last updated: 17/Mar/2015