Artificial intelligence is booming across the globe. Many countries of all sizes are witnessing an explosion in AI investment fueling fierce international competition for talent acquisition and retention, which is the foundation for success in this revolutionary and disruptive science. A growing number of governments have come to understand the importance of the issues at stake and are positioning themselves as mass data providers and future AI users. As this new science is practically limitless, it raises ethical questions that must be given due consideration so that its development can be properly regulated and translated into a responsible AI based on social dialogue and fair and equitable public policies.
AI is a cross-disciplinary technology that is poised to disrupt all sectors of life, the economy and society. This scientific revolution offers a host of promises, but it also raises important issues.
We are fortunate, in Canada and Quebec in particular, to play a leadership role in AI’s development, while ensuring that we create a new economy for the future of Quebec. We have the highest concentration of AI researchers (250 at the Ph.D. level at the Université de Montreal and McGill University), who benefit from a large pool of AI students that are registered in computer science or data science programs. Also, the presence and achievements of Mila and IVADO allow us to shine on the world stage.
We are a leader in AI, and we want to maintain this status. To this end, over the next few years, we will implement a series of strategies and actions to:
- Maintain our leadership position in basic research
- Develop high-performance technology transfer tools
- Equip our companies so that they are competitive in a world where AI is revolutionizing all economic sectors
- Ensure we create sufficient economic value to be able to remain a fair and equitable society by developing responsible AI.
Over the course of a year, hundreds of leaders from all sectors and AI experts from across Quebec volunteered their time and combined their skills to assist the Steering Committee in drawing up the Strategy for the Development of Quebec’s Artificial Intelligence Ecosystem and its recommendations. This report specifies the targets and actions to be implemented to make Quebec a world leader in AI.
Located at 6650-6666 St-Urbain Street in Montreal, the O Mile-Ex Complex will house the talents of Mila, IVADO, many industrial laboratories, start-up companies and venture capital investors. This concentration of talents will promote the creation of a dynamic AI innovation ecosystem, by fostering collaboration and stimulating innovation and technology transfer.
The co-development process for the Montreal AI Declaration began in November 2017. It aims to encourage public debate on AI issues through a citizen consultation process and propose a progressive and inclusive direction for AI development.