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https://novonordiskfonden.dk/en/news/danish-pioneer-centre-for-ai-will-contribute-to-solving-big-societal-challenges/

Danish Pioneer Centre for AI will contribute to solving big societal challenges

Danish Pioneer Centre for AI will contribute to solving big societal challenges

28 Mar 2022

Denmark’s largest research centre for artificial intelligence officially opens on 28 March. The ambition of The Pioneer Centre for AI is to create societal impact through the application of artificial intelligence in areas such as health and biotech, energy, infrastructure as well as climate and biodiversity.

“The unique character of the Pioneer Centre for AI comes through in the way in which we work with the grand challenges. The challenges we will confront are not merely a matter of big data and bigger models; rather, they are high-touch, messy, deeply human problems, for which tech is but one component, situated alongside vital contributions from social science, participatory design, journalism, public policy, and beyond”, explains Director of the Pioneer Centre for AI, Serge Belongie.

Serge Belongie is an internationally renowned AI researcher from the US. In connection with the establishment of the Pioneer Centre for AI, he became a Professor at Department of Computer Science, University of Copenhagen, where the Centre is based. The other universities involved with the Centre are the Technical University of Denmark (DTU), the IT University of Copenhagen, Aalborg University and Aarhus University.

Creates value for Denmark
The Pioneer Centre for AI is the first of several Pioneer Centres in Denmark. The centres are a national initiative with the purpose of conducting fundamental research at the highest international level, with a focus on solving some of society’s major challenges. The centres are funded in collaboration between Danish National Research Foundation, the Carlsberg Foundation, the Lundbeck Foundation, VILLUM FONDEN and the Novo Nordisk Foundation.

With its focus on societal challenges, people and design, the Centre is expected to challenge and change the way artificial intelligence creates value for Denmark.

“It creates great value that the Danish National Research Foundation and some of the biggest private foundations in Denmark have joined forces to develop the framework for a research centre based on societal needs. The establishment of the Pioneer Centre for AI is a good example of how the foundations can pull together and ensure the development of a research area that has the potential to become a beacon for Denmark,” says Lene Oddershede, Senior Vice President, Natural & Technical Sciences, Novo Nordisk Foundation.

In addition to its grant to the Pioneer Centre for AI, the Novo Nordisk Foundation is supporting several other initiatives focusing on data science, including career programmes, funds for interdisciplinary collaboration, data science infrastructure and the Danish Data Science Academy, which, among other things, awards scholarships for PhD and postdoctoral projects in the field of AI.

More information about the Pioneer Centre for AI
The Pioneer Centre for AI is the first of several Pioneer Centres in Denmark initiated by the Ministry of Higher Education and Science.

The Pioneer Centre for AI is established in close collaboration between (and with co-funding from) the Ministry of Higher Education and Science, Danish National Research Foundation, the Carlsberg Foundation, the Lundbeck Foundation, VILLUM FONDEN, the Novo Nordisk Foundation and the five participating universities.

A total of more than DKK 350 million has been allocated to the Centre over the next 13 years. The Novo Nordisk Foundation has granted DKK 54 million of the total amount.

Find more information about the Pioneer Centre for AI here.

Further information

Sabina Askholm Larsen, Communications Partner, +45 2367 3226, sla@novo.dk