Inria Challenges: tackling major issues

Changed on 30/04/2021

With digital technology disrupting all established frameworks, in order to bring through ambitious scientific and entrepreneurial projects, Inria's responsibility is to create value on a large scale for society and for the economy; to raise France’s profile and boost its attractiveness; and to increase the impact of research and innovation in the digital sector.


Illustration Défis Inria : répondre à des grands enjeux
© Inria / Photo S. Erôme - Signatures

Exploring new avenues

Risky research has to be able to produce scientific results that will make a significant contribution to the digital society: furthering knowledge and perhaps inventing new disciplines in which digital technology will play a formative role.

Inria needs to build new fields of research and to explore new avenues, such as:

  • Disruptive research, in areas where the applications are not necessarily known in advance;
  • New scientific problems, renewed research themes and original avenues for scientific exploration into key subjects such as cybersecurity, responsible AI and applications for health and energy;
  • New frontiers in the context of the environment, energy, transport, agriculture and the humanities;
  • Interdisciplinarity and the hybridisation of skills between digital sciences and other disciplines, including humanities, particularly with regard to questions of digital trust, privacy or the loyalty of algorithms. 

What are Inria Challenges?

Inria Challenges (formerly IPL) are used to launch ambitious research projects that are directly linked to the institute’s strategic plan and the benchmarks it contains. Often multidisciplinary, these challenges incorporate a range of different skills, the goal being to showcase the expertise of Inria researchers in relation to important challenges.

Inria Challenges operate as inter-team project teams. These are evaluated by their peers - generally experts from other countries - and run for a period of four years. Coordinated by a scientific leader, Inria Challenges are each structured around a given research subject, with a programme and clearly defined objectives. They bring together “grey matter” resources from different Inria project teams, in addition to external partners from the worlds of industry and academia.

These Challenges are used to develop a structure around major research subjects on which the institute is looking to place particular emphasis. They are launched in small numbers, with substantial resources allocated, and proposals put forward by directors of research. A first assessment will take place at the halfway stage, with a second, outlining the results obtained, taking place at the end of the project.

Inria's challenges, furthering knowledge and perhaps inventing new disciplines
ugénie Brasier et Raphaël James utilisent le mur d'écran Wilder
Plateforme Wilder - © Inria / Photo C. Morel

The Fondation Inria

Support our foundation to help fund exploratory actions

The Inria Foundation: making sense of the digital world.

Inria’s Exploratory Actions

Inria promotes exploratory actions and trusts the intuition of scientists to encourage the emergence of new research themes