Montréal continuing to emerge as major AI player with two conventions coming to Palais des congrès de Montréal

The Palais des congrès de Montréal will be hosting two artificial intelligence (AI) conventions, more evidence of just how dynamically this scientific field is developing in the city. The 30th International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence (IJCAI) will be coming in 2021 and attract nearly 3,000 experts from all over the world. This means a total of nearly 8,400 room nights booked in Montréal hotels and over $4.5 million in tourism revenue for Québec.

Montréal was awarded the international convention, whose bid was coordinated by Marie-France Polidori of the Palais de congrès de Montréal business development team, during the 2017 edition of the event in Melbourne last August. The remarkable support from Joëlle Pineau and Doina Precup proved a determining factor in attracting this major event, made possible thanks to the committed work of the organizing committee, which consisted of representatives from Université du Québec à Montréal, McGill University – including Professor Gregory Dudek, a member of the Ambassadors Club – Université de Montréal, HEC Montréal, Polytechnique, Concordia University, and funding from Tourisme Montréal.

Renowned academics
Professor Joëlle Pineau, who teaches computer science at McGill University, specializes in robotics and machine learning. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau recently announced she will head Facebook’s new AI research lab in Montréal. Doina Precup, also a professor of computer science at McGill, will lead the Montréal office of DeepMind, a leading artificial intelligence company bought by Google in 2014.

New innovative conference announced
Determined to position Québec as an AI hub, and in order to continue to foster their respective missions, the Université de Montréal, Fonds de recherche du Québec and Palais des congrès de Montréal joined forces to create the new Forum on the Socially Responsible Development of Artificial Intelligence, which will take place November 2 and 3 at the Palais. By bringing together experts from fields ranging from pure science to the humanities and social sciences, the Forum will provide a platform for a collective discussion on the ethical and socially responsible development of AI.

Prominent luminaries expected
Keynote speakers will include Yoshua Bengio, leading world figure in deep learning, Canada Research Chair in Statistical Learning Algorithms, and author of three books and over 300 scientific articles, Joëlle Pineau, Yochai Benkler, Berkman Professor of Entrepreneurial Legal Studies at Harvard Law School, Hugo Larochelle, Google Brain Researcher, and Bryn Williams-Jones, Director of the Bioethics Program at the Université de Montréal School of Public Health.

The forum will also provide the backdrop for the drafting of the guiding principles of the Montréal Declaration on the Ethical Development of AI.

“Montréal hosts more international events than any other city in North America, and artificial intelligence features in numerous major conventions focused on the future. We have the privilege of hosting these world experts and playing an active role in bringing them together in the heart of our city, which will translate into significant intellectual benefits for the city and the province,” stated Raymond Larivée, President and CEO of the Palais des congrès de Montréal.

Convention city
Montréal hosts more international events than any other city in North America, according to the rankings released by the International Congress and Convention Association. Shortlisted for the World’s Best Congress Centre award (AIPC) and the recipient of the highest quality standards certification in the industry, the Palais des congrès de Montréal enjoys the collaboration of leaders from various sectors, who in turn can count on the Palais’ experience and support, in order to foster the international reputation of industries that are continually evolving.