Inria Foundation : making sense of the digital world

Changed on 28/02/2024
Inria specifies the missions of its Foundation, created in 2017, which will support bold and meaningful projects in digital science.
Nouveau logo Fondation Inria

Inria has always been known as a pioneering, visionary Institute . Already in existence at the very beginnings of digital technology, it became established thanks to its very high-technology projects that laid the foundations of a brand-new infrastructure:  Cyclades in the 1970s when the Internet first appeared, hosting the AFNIC and involvement in the establishment of the W3C in the 1990s when the Web was born… numerous scientific projects carried out by Inria researchers and teams had an impact on every aspect of the emerging digital society.

In a society that has now become fully digital, Inria is aware of its responsibilities, which are those of an internationally-renowned public applied mathematics and computer science research institute, at the heart of an ecosystem of public and private partners , with the following missions:

  • To accompany the digital transformation in a sustainable, united and responsible society,
  • To be pioneering and visionary in order to anticipate the response to the challenges of tomorrow,
  • To use a partnership-based approach in a highly diverse ecosystem: researchers, innovators, companies, associations and individuals, because the digital world is about more than research and technology. 

In this context, the objective set for the Inria Foundation is ambitious: support Inria, active within its partnership-based ecosystem, in all its research and innovation projects and in more general terms in any initiatives that aim to make digital technology more meaningful. 


Remain insolent and support risk-taking to achieve greater impact

Because digital technology has an impact on all aspects of society and daily life, a research institute like Inria, lying at the heart of digital science and technology, must be more than ever able to work on new themes and to use new methods. Above all, it must maintain its insolence in order to explore and prepare for projects that are off commonly-trodden paths. 

The Inria Foundation’s objective is to find new resources that will help to support and enhance the work of those who make Inria a reference in digital science, as illustrated by some of its performance indicators: obtaining the greatest number of European Research Council grants in the digital field and creating more than 160 technological start-ups.

To fulfil this objective, the Foundation’s missions are:

  • To support audacity and risk-taking  through ambitious research, innovation and entrepreneurial projects,
  • To encourage talented young people and develop vocations through training by research and through supporting young researchers whatever their academic pathways and aspirations,
  • To elicit and accompany research topics and innovations that will revolutionise and help the digital transformation of society , often by encouraging an interdisciplinary approach,
  • To defend, through research and innovation, the causes supported by Inria which require long-term investment and the neutrality of a public research institute.

Based on principles of transparency and ethics , the Inria Foundation will give priority to meaningful strategic approaches, be they related to the causes supported by the Institute (digital technology to help the handicapped, making science and technology more attractive to young people, particularly women, the digital transformation of lifelong education, the development of open software as an infrastructure for innovation, etc.) and or to taking part in the resolution, by the use of an interdisciplinary approach, of our society’s great challenges (digital risks and opportunities related to sustainable development, digital transformation of towns and of mobility, the trustworthy digital society, etc.). 

Human beings are at the heart of each of these strategic aims because digital technology can only be a means of strengthening our society’s development.

The Inria Foundation will help to finance the emergence of new projects to help meet these strategic aims, be it through research, spreading knowledge throughout society or entrepreneurial initiatives attached to public research.

The Inria Foundation is the illustration of the impact that digital technology has on all aspects of our society : it affirms the fundamental importance of collective action, of an interdisciplinary approach and of research orientated towards the interest of the greatest number. On the basis of these values we invite you to commit to, and jointly develop with us, the innovative projects that will contribute to making digital technology meaningful.