Associate Professor

Web Information Systems, TU Delft


  • Revamping of my first year BSc Web Technology website (as part of the Web and Database Technology course) is in full swing.
  • Full paper accepted at RecSys 2020 asking the question What does BERT know about books, movies and music? (work led by Gustavo Penha).
  • I gave a keynote at Baltic DB&IS 2020 to convince the audience to make BERT their new IR baseline: slides!
  • Two full papers accepted at ECIR 2020: one on curriculum learning for IR (led by Gustavo Penha) and one on analyzing BERT with retrieval heuristics (led by Arthur Câmara).
  • As of late 2019, I am looking for MSc thesis students interested in the topics of information retrieval and natural language processing!
  • Freshly elected member of the ACM SIGIR executive committee, my three-year term starts July 1, 2019!

My career

For a brief and compact overview, take a look at my 1-page CV.

I have been working as staff member (first as Assistant Professor and since 2018 as Associate Professor) at the Web Information Systems group, Delft University of Technology since 2013. Between 2011 and 2012 I was a Postdoc in the same group. I received my PhD in 2010 from the University of Twente, where I worked in the Human Media Interaction group. The Otto-von-Guericke University of Magdeburg in Germany was my home during my undergraduate years as a student in computer science. In the past, I have worked on a variety of topics in the fields of information retrieval & data science, including query performance prediction (the topic of my PhD thesis), social search, computational social science, learning to search and IR for specific user groups.

I have diverse research interests and am always happy to dive into a new area. Together with a number of PhD students I am currently focusing on how to incorporate search into the human learning process at scale, collaborative search, conversational search and neural approaches to IR. In 2016 and 2017 I received two prestigious personal grants from the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) with a total funding of more than 1 million euros; this translates into 4-5 PhD/postdoc positions in the developing “search as learning” research area. Take a look at the Dagstuhl Seminar I co-organized on the topic to get an idea of what it is about. TU Delft is a very active provider of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) on the edX platform, which provides a rich experimental playground (many users with actual learning and search needs) for my Lambda-Lab team. In the past few years, in addition to IR, I have also been active in the area of learning analytics (data science applied to large-scale educational data traces).

In 2018, I gave an invited keynote at the French IR conference CORIA 2018 on the topic of search as learning:

We do our best in my lab to keep our one-slide-per-paper presentation updated (to make this manageable we keep the presentation focused on the past 2-3 years):


PO Box 5031
2600 GA Delft
The Netherlands

Office: Van Mourik Broekmanweg 6, East Wing 04.100
Email: c.hauff[at] or claudia.hauff[at]

Current members of my lab

  • David Maxwell (postdoc, since 03/2020)
  • Manuel Valle Torre (Delft Data Science research engineer, ongoing)
  • Felipe Moraes (since 2017)
  • Arthur Barbosa Câmara (PhD student, since 11/2018)
  • Gustavo Penha (PhD student, since 11/2018)
  • Nirmal Roy (PhD student, since 09/2019)
  • Sara Salimzadeh (Phd student, since 11/2019)
  • Peide Zhu (PhD student, since 11/2019)

Past members of my lab

Lab software

  • ELAT: EdX Logfile Analysis Tool that is browser-based, and a fully local processing tool. No server needed, no programming knowledge needed, no setup costs. Lead developer is Manuel Valle Torre.
  • SearchX is a scalable collaborative search system, developed to research large-scale search and sensemaking experiments. Lead developer is Felipe Moraes.
  • APONE is an academic environment for online experiments, that we have used in our research and teaching. Lead developer is Mónica Marrero.
  • SIREN is a simulation framework for understanding the effects of recommender systems in online news environments. Lead developer is Dimitrios Bountouridis.


  • NWO Aspasia grant (100,000€) as a top-up of my NWO VIDI (50K for my research, 50K for diversity measures in the faculty), September 2018.
  • NWA Startimpulsprogramma VWData (325,000€) awarded together with 2 co-PIS. A two-year Postdoc position will be funded within a work package that considers fairness in news recommenders.
  • NWO VIDI grant (800,000€) for my proposal SearchX: Integrating search and sensemaking into large-scale open online learning, May 2017 (personal grant, 15% acceptance rate)
  • NWO TOP grant (226,000€) to conduct “innovative or high-risk scientific research that addresses questions of high quality and urgency;” specifically I will push the boundaries of large-scale collaborative search, November 2016 (personal grant, 23% acceptance rate)
  • Grant (33,000€) from the Leiden-Delft-Erasmus Centre for Education and Learning to conduct research on the benefits of eyetracking in massive open online learning, November 2016
  • TU Delft Education Research tender (2,500€, 1 co-PI) to bring real-time teaching and learning analytics into the classroom, July 2016
  • TU Delft Study Success tender (3,000€, 1 co-PI) to further improve teaching in the Bachelor, September 2015
  • TU Delft Blended Education tender (10,000€, 1 co-PI) to improve teaching in the Bachelor, September 2014

Organizational duties and activities