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Google supports AI lab in Montreal

Tech giant invests in MILA by opening deep learning research center

Google has announced plans to expand its academic support to deep learning in artificial intelligence (AI) research at the Montreal Institute for Learning Algorithms (MILA). The company will invest a total of $4.5-million to fund seven faculty members across the institute, as well as MILA faculty at the University of Montreal and McGill University.

Professor Yoshua Bengio of Montreal Institute for Learning Algorithms (MILA).

Linked to its Google Brain group in Mountain View, California, the alliance will be led by Hugo Larochelle, a forerunner of the deep learning community and a PhD graduate from professor Yoshua Bengio’s lab at U. Montreal. Representing as an example of reverse brain-drain, Larochelle returns to Montreal from the US. Furthermore, Google will renew Yoshua Bengio’s Focused Research Award.

Collectively, Montreal’s top universities now account for more than 150 researchers (including students) in deep learning, the greatest academic concentration in the world, according to MILA’s website.

Collaboration with its academic partners such as Google and start-up factories like Element AI, the MILA and the IVADO hub are contributing keystone AI expertise to Montreal’s bustling big data ecosystem, empowering the community both scientifically and strategically to foster technological innovation based on AI, says professor Bengio, who heads-up MILA.