Ana Claudia Sima

I am a Research Scientist interested in Semantic Web Technologies and their impact in bioinformatics. I graduated my PhD in a joint SNF programme between the Zurich University of Applied Sciences (ZHAW), the University of Lausanne and the SIB Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics. My focus during this time was the development and implementation of Bio-SODA, a question answering system for domain knowledge graphs, which does not require training data. This system is being further used in the INODE EU research project.

I obtained my Master’s in Computer Science from EPFL, where I specialised in Software Systems.

I enjoy working at the boundary between academia and industry, towards researching solutions with practical impact. Over the course of several industrial collaborations, I contributed to developing scalable Big Data processing solutions, for example, implementing predictive analytics via real-time condition monitoring with stream processing technologies.

I also enjoy teaching and mentoring students. During my PhD, I have been involved in teaching activities related to several ZHAW Continuous Advanced Studies (CAS) within the Machine Intelligence and Information Engineering modules.

Research Interests

  • Knowledge Graphs
  • Semantic Search over Structured Data
  • Question Answering


  1. Amer-Yahia, S., Koutrika, G., Bastian, F., Belmpas, T., Braschler, M., Brunner, U., … & Stockinger, K. (2021). INODE: Building an end-to-end data exploration system in practice [extended vision]. arXiv preprint arXiv:2104.04194.

  2. Sima, A.C., Mendes de Farias, T., Anisimova, M., Dessimoz, C., Robinson-Rechavi, M., Zbinden, E. and Stockinger, K., 2021, July. Bio-SODA: Enabling natural language question answering over knowledge graphs without training data. In 33rd International Conference on Scientific and Statistical Database Management (pp. 61-72).

  3. Lehmann, C., Goren Huber, L., Horisberger, T., Scheiba, G., Sima, A.C. and Stockinger, K., 2020. Big Data architecture for intelligent maintenance: a focus on query processing and machine learning algorithms. Journal of Big Data, 7(1), pp.1-26.

  4. Sima, A.C., Dessimoz, C., Stockinger, K., Zahn-Zabal, M. and de Farias, T.M., 2019. A hands-on introduction to querying evolutionary relationships across multiple data sources using SPARQL. F1000Research, 8.

  5. Sima, A.C., Mendes de Farias, T., Zbinden, E., Anisimova, M., Gil, M., Stockinger, H., Stockinger, K., Robinson-Rechavi, M. and Dessimoz, C., 2019. Enabling semantic queries across federated bioinformatics databases. Database, 2019.

  6. Sima, A.C., Stockinger, K., Farias, T.M.D. and Gil, M., 2019. Semantic integration and enrichment of heterogeneous biological databases. In Evolutionary Genomics (pp. 655-690). Humana, New York, NY.

  7. Sima AC, Stockinger K, Affolter K, Braschler M, Monte P, Kaiser L. A hybrid approach for alarm verification using stream processing, machine learning and text analytics. InEDBT 2018, Vienna, Austria, 26-29 March 2018 2018. ACM.

  8. Harvan, M., Locher, T. and Sima, A.C., 2016, August. Cyclone: Unified stream and batch processing. In 2016 45th International Conference on Parallel Processing Workshops (ICPPW) (pp. 220-229). IEEE.

  9. Sima, A.C. and Slusanschi, E., 2012, September. Optimizing Parallel CFD Simulations of 2D Compressible Flows. In 2012 14th International Symposium on Symbolic and Numeric Algorithms for Scientific Computing (pp. 487-494). IEEE.