Dr. Thomas Bernold trained as an experimental physicist at the Swiss Institute of Technology (“ETA”) in Zurich which provided him with a broad scientific background and strategic problem solving skills. As a research assistant at the Australian Atomic Energy Authority, he complemented tangible practice with theory. Subsequently he served as a project manager at the think tank, Gottlieb Duttweiter Institute, where he focused on environmental issues and their intersection with urban planning, technology impact assessment, and innovation management, leading to the first Continental European Conference on the Commercial Use of Artificial Intelligence and Expert Systems. Subsequently, Bernold worked on technology assessment programs for the Bureau International du Travail Geneva and the Swiss Group for AI and Cognitive Science.
In 1989, in association with the Istitato Dalle Molle di Studi Sull Intelligenza Artificiale in Lugano, he developed a series of conferences on the application of IT and telecommunications, most notably the “Computer and Art,” a program which dealt with the creative potential of the new media.
From 2004 to 2008, he was managing director of the program at the University of Basel focusing on Image Criticism. Current consulting work focuses on questions of corporate identity and strategy based on analysis of clients’ intrinsic value system and corporate culture.
A member of the ESC board since its inception, he has been instrumental in setting the direction of the ESC and the types of projects and research it has done, such as the “IT and Democracy” workshop sponsored by George Mason University’s School of Public Administration.
Jazz has been his passion for nearly 50 years. He is the drummer and manager of The Sophisticats, a Zurich-based jazz band that plays throughout Switzerland. His passion in music extends to the “Concerts on the Lake,” which he conceived and inaugurated in 2017.