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Recherche - IA

Nathalie Lacaux - 28/06/2018

Inria Rennes - Bretagne Atlantique and the IRISA, at the very heart of research into artificial intelligence in Brittany.

At a time of growing interest in AI, the Inria Rennes - Bretagne Atlantique research centre and the IRISA (Institute for Research in Computer Science and Random Systems) published an assessment of the research activity carried out in this field within their 45 teams. It revealed the significant amount of research work that is ongoing, rooted in the very DNA of these two Brittany-based centres and applied to a range of different fields, both in industry and in wider society.

Deep learning isn’t the only aspect of artificial intelligence (AI). Generally speaking, AI can be defined as “an information system capable of analysing its own environment in such a way as to be able to make decisions and to interact ”. Because of this, AI is a polymorphous subject with ties to a whole host of scientific fields, from computer architecture and learning theory right through to decision support.
Concretely, 40% of all research teams - somewhere in the region of 300 scientists from the Inria Rennes - Bretagne Atlantique centre and the IRISA - are engaged in research within this field, resulting in more than a hundred national and international collaborative projects involving academic partners, SME and major organisations.

The majority of these teams make contributions to the various different disciplines and fields within AI, chief among which we find robotics and perception, learning and knowledge representation and reasoning. Others see themselves as advanced users of AI, combining techniques from learning and reasoning with other disciplines such as cybersecurity or systems engineering, thus enabling them to explore new areas of research.

This research is set against the backdrop of a flourishing educational ecosystem, with training provided at partner higher education institutes (The University of Rennes 1, INSA Rennes, CentraleSupelec, IMT Atlantique, ENS Rennes, ENSAI, etc. )

Research in the field of AI split up into three key areas

The research work carried out by the IRISA and the Inria Rennes - Bretagne Atlantique centre is focused on three key areas:

  • “learning and data mining” , the aim being to explore and understand all types of data in order to enable prediction and to facilitate decision-making, involving ten research teams
  • “robotics, perception and vision” is the focus of eight different teams tasked with developing autonomous robots capable of perceiving and understanding their environment or giving everyday objects the capacity for perception specific to living things, such as hearing or vision
  • “knowledge representation and logic” , an area in which six teams are currently working on formal knowledge representation in order to enable computer programs to reason based on these representations.

AI research geared towards society and industry

The research teams from the Inria Rennes - Bretagne Atlantique centre and the IRISA collaborate with a range of different academic and industrial partners, major organisations (Airbus, AFP, Safran, Orange, Technicolor, Huawei, Nokia, Sanofi, SIPA Ouest France, Valeo, Vinci Construction, Total, Facebook, etc.) and SME, an ecosystem that is particularly flourishing in Brittany, with some real gems starting to appear.

The research carried out in the field of AI with its roots in these projects has been applied to various sectors, whether in industry or in society more generally.

  • The media, entertainment, culture and education
  • Biology, health and medicine
  • The climate, the environment and agriculture
  • The cities of the future and intelligent environments
  • Defence, cybersecurity and surveillance

Keywords: AI Industrie Innovation Research IRISA INRIA Rennes - Bretagne Atlantique Society