Chile's Minister of Science meets with the Chairman and CEO of Inria in Paris
As part of the official visit of the President of the Republic of Chile, Gabriel Boric, to France - where he met with French President Emmanuel Macron - the Minister of Science, Technology, Knowledge and Innovation of Chile, Aisén Etcheverry, visited the prestigious French Institute of Research in Digital Sciences and Technologies, Inria, in Paris. This is the first time a Chilean government authority visits the Institute, which has had a center in Chile, Inria Chile, for more than 10 years.
The minister was welcomed by the Chairman and CEO of Inria, Bruno Sportisse; Inria's Deputy CEO for Science, Jean-Frédéric Gerbeau; Inria's Deputy CEO of Innovation, François Cuny; the Director of International Relations of Inria, Cécile Vigouroux, and the Director of the Inria center in Chile, Nayat Sánchez Pi. Also participated, Jorge Iglesias, Minister Counselor of the Embassy of Chile in France and Alban Duverdier, Scientific Director in Information and Communication Technology of the General Directorate of Research and Innovation (DGRI), French Ministry of Higher Education and Research.
Inria and the Chilean Ministry of Science, Technology, Knowledge and Innovation declared their willingness to strengthen Franco-Chilean collaboration and cooperation in the field of digital sciences and technologies, especially in the area of applied artificial intelligence in strategic areas for both countries.
We just finished a visit to Inria, in France. We were with the Chairman and CEO of Inria in France, Bruno Sportisse, and also with the director of Inria Chile. On the occasion we had the opportunity to discuss in depth the new stage in the collaboration between Inria, as the French National Institute for Research in Digital Science and Technology, and the Government of Chile. This is part of the bilateral collaboration that already exists today in terms of research, but above all in issues related to artificial intelligence, which is part of the priorities of the Ministry and the Government of Chile, and which are cutting-edge issues that are being discussed with very similar approaches in France and Chile.
Minister of Science, Technology, Knowledge and Innovation of Chile
Inria's Chairman and CEO, Bruno Sportisse, stressed on the importance of Inria's commitment through its center in Chile and the importance of Franco-Chilean cooperation.
Inria's commitment through its Inria Chile center highlights the synergies generated by Franco-Chilean scientific cooperation in the digital field. The challenges of artificial intelligence are global and it is crucial to strengthen collaboration between our countries.
Chairman and CEO of Inria
Inria Chile is the only Inria center abroad, created in 2012 with the aim of promoting this relationship. For 11 years, Inria Chile has carried out more than 190 research and development projects in digital sciences and technologies, particularly in artificial intelligence, applied to strategic sectors such as astronomy, renewable energy, mining or the fight against climate change and the preservation of biodiversity, among others. This, working collaboratively with the main Chilean universities and research centers, thanks to a network of more than 650 scientists who have collaborated with the center since its foundation. On the other hand, more than 200 students have benefited from the training programs of Inria Chile through research internships and undergraduate and postgraduate theses, while the Inria Academy program in Chile has benefited more than 700 people since its launch in Chile in 2019.
The director of Inria Chile, Nayat Sánchez-Pi, highlighted the importance of strengthening cooperation between the two countries and the potential of AI as a tool for the development of Chile and Latin America.
This visit is an important milestone in strengthening the collaboration between France and Chile in digital sciences and technologies, and in particular in artificial intelligence carried out by Inria. We will work together to design the future of our partnership, trusting that this visit marks the beginning of an even more fruitful and renewed period of scientific-technological collaboration, through Inria Chile.
Director of Inria Chile
Also, at the meeting, the minister had the opportunity to learn more about Inria, its structure, its capabilities in AI and its role as coordinator of the research component in France's National Plan for Artificial Intelligence.
The visit also included a demonstration of the Solo 12, UR5 and Upkie robots together with the WILLOW project-team. Solo 12 is an open source robot that is part of the "Open Dynamic Robot Initiative" project, whose objective is to develop lightweight, highly dynamic and low-cost robots that encourage experimentation and can interact with their environment.
The UR5 is a six-axis collaborative industrial robot that quickly moves between different welding positions within a working radius of 850mm. The CosyPose approach estimates the 6D pose of various known objects in a scene captured by one or multiple cameras with unknown viewpoints.
Upkie is a bipedal homemade wheeled robot that can balance, crouch, roll over and more. Designed to be 100% do-it-yourself, using only tools and components that can be ordered online, and open source software that is maintained on GitHub.
AI and its applications in agriculture and the environment
The French National Strategy for Artificial Intelligence
On March 29th, 2018, the President of the French Republic Emmanuel Macron launched the French National Strategy for Artificial Intelligence (SNIA, for its acronym in French) with three objectives: to reach the highest scientific level in AI by training and attracting the best global talent in this field; generalize artificial intelligence in the economy and society, and give it an ethical framework.
45% of the budget dedicated to the National AI Strategy is devoted to the National AI Research Program (PNRIA), whose coordination has been entrusted to Inria. This program has several priorities:
- Promote attractiveness and talent support programs;
- Develop AI training at all levels (initial training, continual education, and top-notch training at Master and Doctorate levels);
- Expand State-of-the-art digital infrastructures;
- Support research in AI through dedicated calls, operated by the French National Research Agency (ANR);
- Strengthen and foster joint collaborative strategies at European and international levels, and
- Boost private-public partnerships and increase the impact of research in AI.
Inria is responsible for coordinating all activities related to training and research in the field of artificial intelligence and, particularly, the transversal management of the four new interdisciplinary AI institutes created in the first phase of this strategy. Through these, Inria's activity has not stopped growing. In addition, in support of public policies, it is involved in coordinating various specific structuring initiatives for the French ecosystem as a whole.
In November 2021, a new stage of the National Strategy for AI was launched, as part of the French government's “France 2030” plan, with 1.5 billion euros of public funding (2021-2025). At the research level, the coordination of which has been entrusted to Inria in this phase as well, this acceleration strategy makes it possible to finance the following actions:
- PEPR (Priority Research Programmes and Facilities) piloted by CEA, CNRS and Inria, dedicated to embedded AI and frugal AI, decentralized AI and trusted AI, as well as the mathematical foundations of AI.
- Development of the Deepgreen infrastructure for embedded Deep Learning.
- Development of the P16 infrastructure for the extension of Scikit-learn.