Cooperation between IBM and fortiss: new centre for AI research established in Munich

The new joint technology centre for research into artificial intelligence will be located at the IBM Watson IoT Center in the Bavarian capital. The aim of the cooperation between the US American IT company and the Bavaria’s research institute is to develop reliable and secure AI technologies for the economy and society.

Bavaria’s Minister of Economic Affairs Hubert Aiwanger (center) at the opening of the joint IBM and fortiss AI research centre (Photo: A. Eckert / fortiss)

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is one of the topical buzzwords at the moment. It’s not just automation and networking that play a major role during the course of digital transformation, the development of complex software for the control and monitoring of new technologies is also of huge importance. AI can help process the rapidly growing data sets even faster and more efficiently across industries. One special focus of the newly created research centre is on the reliability of AI with regard to safety and trustworthiness. IBM and fortiss want to achieve the goal that decisions made by machines, robots and vehicles are comprehensible and explainable. The new centre will also focus on robustness against erroneous data entries or targeted attacks. More than 50 scientists are expected to work at the new centre in the near future.  

 

Research partnership strengthens Bavaria as an internationally leading ICT location

 

“A strong ecosystem of partners from industry and research is crucial to tap into the potential of AI in a sustainable way. We are therefore really looking forward to developing our research partnership with fortiss considerably and also creating an important and world-wide networked centre for AI research as a result,” explains Kareem Yusef, CEO at IBM Watson.


Bavaria's Minister of Economic Affairs Hubert Aiwanger emphasises the international importance of Bavaria as a top ICT location and adds: “Artificial Intelligence is one of the main drivers of future economic development. We are proud that fortiss and IBM will be jointly developing these trendsetting technologies in Bavaria. They are of paramount importance for Bavaria’s competitiveness as a high-tech location.” 

 

Access to AI technology – for SMEs too  

 

The new centre for AI research also results in substantial advantages for the companies based here. As IBM and fortiss are aiming to tap into AI’s potential for IoT applications that are critical for companies, among other things. Particular attention is being paid to AI-aided assistance systems and the safe control of autonomous robots and complex production systems. Smaller and medium-sized enterprises are also to profit from this: “fortiss is bringing its preliminary work on the reliability of software-based systems to the joint AI lab, which may lead to improved AI algorithms with clear benefits and great trust. And within the AI potential topics, we are going to study together, how the positive contribution of such AI algorithms can be assessed and implemented more differentiated and more realistically, for SMEs too,” says Professor Dr Helmut Krcmar, speaker for the fortiss board of directors.