The Canada CIFAR AI Chairs program, a cornerstone of the Pan-Canadian AI Strategy, provides outstanding researchers with long-term, dedicated funding to support their research programs and to train the next generation of AI leaders. Each of the chairs will receive five years of dedicated funding to support research excellence in machine learning. The program is one of the goals of the CIFAR Pan-Canadian AI Strategy, a $125-million investment by the Government of Canada.
The 34 newly-named chairs are pioneering research in areas that will have a global societal impact, such as the development of machine learning for medical image analysis, using AI to map and enhance our understanding of the brain, developing responsible and ethical AI technologies, using AI to power robotics for tasks such as safety and surgery, 3D computer vision, natural language processing, and more.
Attracting world-class talent
Thirteen of the chairs named in this cohort have chosen to remain in Canada, a testament to Canada's leadership in AI. Twenty-one are either taking up their first faculty position in Canada and/or have been recruited from the US and around the world to pursue groundbreaking research in Canada.
With today's announcement, since the program launched in December 2018, a total of 80 Canada CIFAR AI Chairs have been named, securing world-class talent and expertise in Canada. The cluster of AI experts is attracting talented students to study in Canada, major multinational companies to set up R&D labs, and inspiring a critical mass of AI startups.
Two researchers awarded Facebook CIFAR AI Chair
In September 2017, CIFAR and Facebook announced a new US$2.625 million partnership. As a major milestone in the partnership, CIFAR is pleased to announce that two of the chairs named today will be Facebook CIFAR AI Chairs. The chairs, Siva Reddy (Mila, McGill University) and Pierre-Luc Bacon (Mila, Université de Montréal), are both based in university labs and will exercise total research independence as chairs.
Pan-Canadian AI Leadership
CIFAR works in close partnership with with three national AI Institutes: Amii (Edmonton), Mila (Montréal) and the Vector Institute (Toronto) in naming chairs for the program. The AI Institutes nominate researchers to the program, and nominations are reviewed by a group of esteemed international reviewers.
The researchers in this cohort are based at École Polytechnique de Montréal, Google Brain, McGill University, Microsoft Research, Université Laval, Université de Montréal, Université de Sherbrooke, University of Alberta, University of Toronto, and the University of Waterloo.