Canada to host G7 conference on artificial intelligence in Montreal in December

As part of the Neural Information Processing Systems conference,Canada will be hosting a G7 conference on artificial intelligence in Montreal on Dec. 6. The conference is a fallout of Canada’s G7 presidency, and the summit of world leaders that met earlier this year in Quebec, says a report on the Financial Post

“Artificial Intelligence is a key part of our government’s economic growth strategy. It presents new opportunities to generate prosperity for Canadian families through new and innovative high-quality jobs,” Innovation, Science and Economic Development Minister Navdeep Bains said in a news release Wednesday afternoon. “The G7 conference in December will help us focus on the responsible adoption of AI and explore business opportunities related to AI.”

Bains had earlier while speaking at the Fortune Global Forum in Toronto, addressed questions about increasing competition in the global artificial intelligence game, with both the United States and China trying to position themselves as world-leaders in this area, based on the pioneering research of academics like Geoffrey Hinton in Toronto, and Yoshua Bengio in Montreal.

He said, “From our perspective as a government, we realize this is the area where we can continue to succeed.”

“We’re betting on our No. 1 resource, which is our talent.”

Recently, Canada has made efforts to place itself as a world leader in artificial intelligence technology. Places like Toronto, Montreal and Edmonton are now centers for research and development. In addition, Google, Facebook, Uber, Microsoft and Samsung all doing important work on machine learning in the country.

Significant funds have been set aside by the Federal Government towards this initiative, this includes $125 million as part of the Pan-Canadian Artificial Intelligence Strategy. Newswire breaks the budget down as follows:

  • The Pan-Canadian Artificial Intelligence Strategy ($125 million) to help retain and attract top AI talent and companies that use AI;
  • The launch of the SCALE.AI supercluster as part of the Government's $950 million Innovation Superclusters Initiative; and
  • Support for leading-edge AI research at the Vector Institute (Toronto), Alberta Machine Intelligence Institute (Edmonton) and Montréal Institute for Learning Algorithms through the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research.

It can be recalled that Canada and France had earlier this year, issued a Statement on Artificial Intelligence that reiterated their vision to promote an idea of artificial intelligence founded on human rights, inclusion, diversity, innovation and economic growth.

A part of the statement reads “In this context, Canada and France emphasize the need to develop the capacity to anticipate impacts and coordinate efforts in order to encourage trust and promote the development of artificial intelligence. To this end, we are calling for the creation of an international study group that can become a global point of reference for understanding and sharing research results on artificial intelligence issues and best practices. This initiative will work to create internationally recognized expertise and provide a mechanism for sharing multidisciplinary analysis, foresight and coordination capabilities in the area of artificial intelligence that is inclusive and multi-stakeholder in its approach.”


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