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AI Research boost: new AI labs for ROBUST AI programme

Date of news: 12 January 2023

ROBUST, an initiative by the Innovation Center for Artificial Intelligence (ICAI), is supported by the University of Amsterdam and 51 government, industry and knowledge-sector partners including Radboud University and Radboudumc. The programme aims to strengthen the Dutch artificial intelligence (AI) ecosystem by boosting fundamental AI research. The research sponsor, the Dutch Research Council (NWO) has earmarked 25 million euros for the programme for the next 10 years. The AI department of the Donders Institute will work together with ASM Pacific in the ASM ICAI lab, which will be located in the Maria Montessori building of the Faculty of Social Sciences.

The additional €25 million grant comes from a call by the research council for Long-Term Programmes, which give strong public-private consortia the chance to receive funding for a ten-year period. This as part of the initiative of the Dutch AI Coalition to invest in explainable and trustworthy AI. Next to the research council, companies, knowledge institutes contribute to the programme.

The ROBUST programme is complementary to the AiNed programme and will shape the collaboration on dissemination, consolidation and valorisation of the results, as well as retaining talent in the Netherlands. This contributes to the ambitions of the Strategy Digital Economy of the cabinet, to be in the forefront of human-centred AI development and AI applications.

17 new labs, 85 new PhD candidates

Seventeen new public-private labs will be set up under the ROBUST umbrella and form part of the Innovation Center for Artificial Intelligence (ICAI), thus bringing its lab total to 46. ICAI focuses on AI talent and knowledge development. In the coming year, ROBUST will recruit no fewer than 85 new PhD candidates, followed by another 85 in five years’ time.

Donders Institute

Marcel van Gerven, professor of AI and head of one of the labs at Radboud University, adds: 'The AI department of the Donders Institute will work together with ASM Pacific in the ASM ICAI lab, which will be located in the Maria Montessori building of the Faculty of Social Sciences. Our goal is to develop advanced machine learning techniques with applications in semiconductor industry. The focus of the lab is the development of energy-efficient and robust intelligent technology for sustainable process control.'

For more information: read the full press release  ROBUST AI programme receives additional €25 million in funding from Dutch Research Council.