Dr. Severin Kacianka

Postal Address

  • Severin Kacianka
  • Chair I4
  • Boltzmannstr. 3
  • 85748 Garching bei München
  • Germany

About me

I am a PostDoc Researcher at the Chair of Software Engineering headed by Professor Pretschner. In my PhD thesis I focused on accountability for Cyber-Physical Systems and showed how we can use the mathematics of causality to express and compare notions of accountability. Additionally I work on a joint project with the bidt where we invesitagate how to best embed ethical deliberation into software development processs.

Before joining the chair I studied at the Alpen-Adria-University Klagenfurt in Austria where I received my Master's degree with distinction. In my master's thesis I worked on video streaming for Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) networks.

Research Interests

  • Accountability
  • Causality
  • Cyber-Physical Systems
  • Machine Learning
  • Security
  • Social Engineering

Thesis Topics

Open Topics

If you want to write a thesis in one of my areas of research, please just send me an e-mail!

Ongoing Topics
Completed Topics
  • Li Nguyen: "Digitalisierung und Demokratie" (IDP)
  • Hannah Kuehn: "Digitizing EDAP - A Tool for Ethical Deliberation in Agile Processes" (Bachelor Thesis)
  • Felix Lange: "Ethik in der agilen Softwareentwicklung" (IDP)
  • Li Nguyen: "IT Security Awareness: Comparing Inoculation Methods" (Master Thesis)

  • Sanjay Jayaprakash: "Quantifying Digital Literacy" (Application Project)

  • Sanjay Jayaprakash: "Measuring Digitalization" (Master Thesis)

  • Severin Schmid: "Accountability for Industrial Manufacturing Robots" (Bachelor Thesis)

  • Andreas Zimmerer: "Accountability for an Autonomous Car Prototype" (Bachelor Thesis)

  • Valentin Zieglmeier: "Real-Time Remote Intrusion Detection" (Master Thesis)
  • Lukas Welte: "Accountability Infrastructure for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles" (Master Thesis)
  • Christoph Caprano: "Accountability for Cloud Controlled Robots" (Bachelor Thesis)
  • Christina Miller: "Causal Models for Cyber Physical Systems" (Research Praktikum)
  • Christian Wörle: "Accountability for a Smart Parking Lot" (Guided Research)


Winter 2023
Summer 2023
Summer 2022
Winter 2021
Winter 2019
Summer 2019
Winter 2018
Summer 2018
Winter 2017
Summer 2017
Winter 2016
Summer 2016
Winter 2015


  • Elsner, D., Kacianka, S., Lipp, S., Pretschner, A., Habermann, A., Graber, M., & Reimer, S. (2023, April). BinaryRTS: Cross-language Regression Test Selection for C++ Binaries in CI. In 2023 IEEE Conference on Software Testing, Verification and Validation (ICST) (pp. 327-338). IEEE.

  • Lipp, S., Elsner, D., Kacianka, S., Pretschner, A., Böhme, M., & Banescu, S. (2023). Green Fuzzing: A Saturation-based Stopping Criterion using Vulnerability Prediction. In ACM SIGSOFT International Symposium on Software Testing and Analysis.

  • Hundt, A., Agnew, W., Zeng, V., Kacianka, S., & Gombolay, M. (2022, June). Robots enact malignant stereotypes. In 2022 ACM Conference on Fairness, Accountability, and Transparency (pp. 743-756).

  • Biebl, B., Arcidiacono, E., Kacianka, S., Rieger, J. W., & Bengler, K. (2022). Opportunities and limitations of a gaze-contingent display to simulate visual field loss in driving simulator studies. Frontiers in neuroergonomics, 3, 916169

  • Zuber, N., Gogoll, J., Kacianka, S., Pretschner, A., & Nida-Rümelin, J. (2022). Empowered and embedded: ethics and agile processes. Humanities and Social Sciences Communications, 9(1), 1-13.

  • Zuber, N., Kacianka, S., & Gogoll, J. (2022). Big data ethics, machine ethics or information ethics? Navigating the maze of applied ethics in IT. arXiv preprint arXiv:2203.13494.

  • Unni, A., Trende, A., Pauley, C., Weber, L., Biebl, B., Kacianka, S., ... & Rieger, J. W. (2022). Investigating differences in behavior and brain in human-human and human-autonomous vehicle interactions in time-critical situations. Frontiers in neuroergonomics, 3, 3.

  • A. Pretschner., N. Zuber, J. Gogoll, S. Kacianka and J.  Nida-Rümelin (2021). Ethik in der agilen Software-Entwicklung. Informatik Spektrum, 44(5), 348-354.

  • B. Biebl, S. Kacianka, A. Unni, A. Trende, J. W. Rieger, A. Lüdtke, A. Pretschner and K. Benglee. (2021). A Causal Model of Intersection-Related Collisions for Drivers With and Without Visual Field Loss. In International Conference on Human-Computer Interaction (pp. 219-234). Springer, Cham
  • J. Gogoll, N. Zuber, S. Kacianka, T. Greger, A. Pretschner and J. Nida-Rümelin (2021). Ethics in the Software Development Process: from Codes of Conduct to Ethical Deliberation. Philosophy & Technology, 1-24.
  • S. Kacianka. and A. Pretschner (2021). Designing Accountable Systems. In Proceedings of the 2021 ACM Conference on Fairness, Accountability, and Transparency (pp. 424-437).
  • A. Pretschner and S. Kacianka (2021). Accountability for Cyber-Physical Systems. In Encyclopedia of Cryptography, Security and Privacy (pp. 1-3). Springer Berlin Heidelberg.
  • N. Pöchhacker and S. Kacianka (2021). Algorithmic accountability in context. Socio-technical perspectives on structural causal models. Frontiers in big Data, 55.
  • N Zuber, S Kacianka, J Nida-Rümelin, A Pretschner (2020) Ethical Deliberation for Agile Software Processes: EDAP Manual.In Digital Transformation and Ethics
  • A. Ibrahim, T. Klesel, E. Zibaei, S. Kacianka and A. Pretschner (2020). Actual causality canvas: A general framework for explanation-based socio-technical constructs. In ECAI 2020 (pp. 2978-2985). IOS Press.
  • A. Ibrahim, S. Kacianka, A. Pretschner, C. Hartsell, and G. Karsai. Practical causal models for cyber-physical systems. In 11th Annual NASA Formal Methods Symposium, 2019. Accepted for publication.
  • S. Kacianka, A. Ibrahim, A. Pretschner, A. Trende, and A. Lüdtke. Extending causal models from machines into humans. In 4th Workshop on Formal Reasoning about Causation, Respon- sibility, & Explanations in Science & Technology, 2019. Accepted for publication.
  • V. Zieglmeier, S. Kacianka, T. Hutzelmann and A. Pretschner (in-press) A Real-Time Remote IDS Testbed for Connected Vehicles In: 34th ACM Symposium on Applied Computing, Limassol, Cyprus https://arxiv.org/abs/1811.10945
  • S. Kacianka and A. Pretschner (2018) Understanding and Formalizing Accountability for Cyber-Physical Systems In: 2018 IEEE International Conference on Systems, Man, and Cybernetics (SMC), Myiazaki, Japan https://arxiv.org/abs/1810.09704
  • S. Kacianka, K. Beckers, F. Kelbert, P. Kumari (2017) How Accountability is Implemented and Understood in Research Tools. In: Felderer M., Méndez Fernández D., Turhan B., Kalinowski M., Sarro F., Winkler D. (eds) Product-Focused Software Process Improvement. PROFES 2017. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol 10611. Springer, Cham https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-69926-4_15
  • B. Dieber, B. Breiling, S. Taurer, S. Kacianka, S. Rass, P. Schartner, Security for the Robot Operating System, Robotics and Autonomous Systems(2017), https://doi.org/10.1016/j.robot.2017.09.017
  • C. Cârlan, B. Gallina, S. Kacianka, and R. Breu, "Arguing on Software-Level Verification Techniques Appropriateness," International Conference on Computer Safety, Reliability, and Security (SAFECOMP), Trento, Italy, 2017, pp. 39-54. doi: 10.1007/978-3-319-66266-4_3
  • B. Dieber, S. Kacianka, S. Rass and P. Schartner, "Application-level security for ROS-based applications," 2016 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS), Daejeon, South Korea, 2016, pp. 4477-4482. doi: 10.1109/IROS.2016.7759659
  • S. Kacianka, F. Kelbert, and A. Pretschner, (2016). "Towards a unified model of accountability infrastructures." In Gössler, G. and Sokolsky, O., editors, Proceedings First Workshop on Causal Reasoning for Embedded and safety-critical Systems Technologies, Eindhoven, The Netherlands, 8th April 2016, volume 224 of Electronic Proceedings in Theoretical Computer Science, pages 40–54. Open Publishing Association. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.4204/EPTCS.224.5
  • S. Kacianka and H. Hellwagner, (2015) "Adaptive Video Streaming for UAV Networks." In Proceedings of the 7th ACM International Workshop on Mobile Video (MoVid '15). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 25-30. DOI=http://dx.doi.org/10.1145/2727040.2727043