Polish funding agency launches call to establish AI research centres

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The National Centre for Research and Development and the National Science Centre have launched a call for proposals in a new common venture ARTIQ - AI Centres of Excellence. Foreign scientists who would like to act as leaders of the Centres are invited to apply.

The aim of the ARTIQ project is to fund projects which will contribute to increasing Poland's R&I potential in the field of artificial intelligence. This goal will be achieved by creating three AI Centres of Excellence (AI CE) as highly specialized research teams operating at different Polish scientific organisations and led by top scientists.

Within ARTIQ as a joint venture, fundamental research will be funded by the National Science Centre (NCN), and the National Centre for Research and Development (NCBR) will finance industrial research and technology development projects (TRL 2-TRL 9) as well as pre-commercial works and the establishment of special purpose vehicles.

"AI Centres of Excellence will be an important element in building the entire ecosystem supporting the development of artificial intelligence in Poland. In this respect, we are faced with a lot of challenges that we undertake, such as the development of human resources capable of conducting research and innovation in the field of AI at the highest world level; ensuring the continuity of fundamental research and technology development, pre-commercial projects and the commercialisation of their results; as well as support for special purpose vehicles from the AI ​​sector" said Wojciech Kamieniecki PhD, director of the NCBR. "All these activities are leading to building the Polish brand in the field of artificial intelligence on the international stage" he emphasized.

AI development is one of the priority activity directions in Poland, the NCBR places particular emphasis on this subject and provides support in the form of project financing.

AI Centers of Excellence (AI CE) will be selected from the so-called host institutions, i.e. Polish organisations which fulfil the conditions for the submission of applications in the call. Research teams at AI CE will be led by internationally recognised scientists from abroad with outstanding scientific, commercialisation and organizational achievements, they will be selected in the call. In each of the AI ​​Centres of Excellence, research teams centered around leaders will conduct innovative projects in the field of artificial intelligence.

Future AI CE leaders must have a PhD for at least 8 years, documented scientific achievements and international experience in the field of artificial intelligence, including success in commercialisation and cooperation with business, without a permanent residency in the territory of Poland in the past two years, i.e. they did not work, study or manage a grant project implemented in Poland.

The budget of ARTIQ is PLN 60 million. The maximum co-financing of one selected project is PLN 20 million. The call for applications is open from September 20 to December 20, 2021 (until 4:00 p.m.).

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