Brussels, Belgium — On Monday October 3rd 2022, His Majesty King Philippe visited Brussels-based FARI – AI for the Common Good Institute during the 5th year anniversary celebration of the BeCentral Digital Campus. The King was welcomed by the BeCentral team, the FARI directors, as well as Artificial Intelligence (AI), Data, and Robotics researchers of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) and the Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB).
“FARI’s presence in BeCentral, in the centre of Brussels city, is important to the translation of VUB and ULB’s research into services for the region. Bringing academic research closer to the tech ecosystem, the civic society, and the public administration of Brussels paves way for stronger partnerships towards a shared goal: the Common Good,” explained FARI co-director (VUB) Hans de Canck to His Majesty.
In addition, Carl Mörch, FARI co-director (ULB), explained that “FARI wants to actively bridge a gap between Technologies and Society by creating collaborations between experts, the region, its administrations, companies and most importantly its citizens. Its ambition is to be a place where any Brusseler and organization can come learn, develop and experiment ideas that could contribute to a more sustainable region.”
To demonstrate this, some of the FARI Professors Ann Nowé, Hugues Bersini, Tom Lenaerts and Bram Vanderborght presented AI and Robotics projects on Health and Well-being, Climate and Energy, Future of work, and Fairness. This selection of projects illustrates how these technologies could contribute to Society, but also how it poses complex ethical and legal challenges. They also explained to the King how the FARI Institute allows researchers to interact better with citizens, public administrations and industry. It will contribute to more excellent research on AI, Data and Robotics and at the same time create digital innovation that is more ethical and sustainable for society.
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FARI’s team also shared the importance of creating an international network of Cities that embrace Public and Urban AI solutions. Lessons learnt about AI in other regions of the world could be invaluable to organizations in Brussels.
With the vision to improve its information sharing to the public, FARI’s new website was also soft launched during the visit of His Majesty.
FARI is a joint initiative of the Université Libre de Bruxelles and the Vrije Universiteit Brussel. It is funded by the Recovery and Resilience Fund “Next Generation” of the European Union, and is supported by Innoviris and Brussels Regional Informatics Centre (BRIC). FARI is set to expand its new offices, including its innovative Test and Experience Center, Services Hub, and Research Infrastructures, in December 2022.
For more information about FARI’s activities, projects, and research leaders, visit www.fari.brussels