Google and Tel Aviv University recently launched a program for promoting artificial intelligence-related multidisciplinary research for the benefit of society. The program aims to support research and collaborations in data science and artificial intelligence that can advance humanity by addressing social issues on a global agenda.

It started within the framework of TAD–TAU Center for Artificial Intelligence & Data Science, established in February and headed by Professor Meir Feder of the Iby and Aladar Fleischman Faculty of Engineering.

The three-year program was announced at a recent ceremony at the university, naming 10 winners out of 27 proposals submitted in response to the joint call. Seven of the winning projects are supported by Google.

The grant winners, whose projects address aspects of “AI for Social Good,” include researchers from a wide range of disciplines, including zoology, electrical engineering, economics, statistics, communication disorders, biblical studies, earth sciences, computer science, sociology and anthropology.

Professor Yossi Matias, vice president at Google and the managing director of Google Center in Israel, spoke of AI technologies and how they improve lives: “AI already has a great impact in various areas. Google is especially happy about its work on beneficial and even life-saving products, such as the worldwide project for accurate flood forecasting, technology enabling the hearing-impaired to conduct phone conversations and studies on the use of AI to enhance disease diagnosis.”

Professor and TAU president Ariel Porat, who aims to build “bridges” between different university disciplines, said at the ceremony: “I share a common vision with Professor Yossi Matias. We believe that AI researchers can benefit significantly from collaborations with researchers in the social sciences and humanities, just as the latter benefit from new developments in AI. I am very happy about our partnership with Google. I look forward to seeing its fruits and hope to expand it further in the future.”


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