Greetings from Chairperson

Dear friends, 

Artificial intelligence technology has been developing at an accelerated pace in recent years.  Its application is progressing throughout the world, having a significant impact on a wide range of industrial areas and social infrastructure.  On the other hand, if we look at AI research in Japan, we can say that it lags in fundamental areas.  The slow utilization of big data, knowledge, and computational resources, and the lack of application to social implementation.  In Japan, in particular, basic research, general-purpose research, and sectoral applied research have developed independently and decentralized.  There have been a few cross-cutting activities.

It is essential to improve our country's AI-related research capabilities further and to promote the social implementation of the research results, and to establish a network with AIST, RIKEN, and NICT as the core AI-related centers.  In this network, universities and research institutes in Japan will use their strengths to collaborate and complement each other.  At the same time, we will disseminate information to the world in a unified manner.

Based on the government's AI Strategy 2019, we have established the AI Japan Research and Development Network (AI Japan) to collaborate in AI research and development in Japan by providing integrated and unified information on artificial intelligence (AI) research and development, and by promoting exchange of opinions among AI researchers.  The aim is to unite Japanese wisdom and revitalize AI research and development to the world.  Then, we invited universities and public research institutes which activly engaged in AI research and development in Japan to join us as members.  We obtained more than 100 participants and launched this website for integrated and unified information dissemination in May 2020.

In addition, concerning the world-wide spread of infection of COVID-19, we have published a list of coronavirus related AI research activities among our members.  We believe that Artificial intelligence (AI) can contribute to various aspects, such as therapeutic drug development, infection simulation, and creation of remote environment activities.  It is our first feature of integrated and unified information dissemination activity.

With AIST, RIKEN, and NICT at its core centers, and with the participation of universities and public research institutes in Japan, we will continue to actively promote announcements of the research and development results and dissemination of information on various news, events and other activities through our website.  We would also like to provide a place for discussion and exchange through SNS among participants.  In the future, we will seek the participation of industries and promote active exchange with overseas research institutions.  We will work to create a Japanese model of AI research and development so that Japan can become an attractive AI research center chosen by researchers around the world.

Hiroaki Kitano, chairperson of the AI Japan R&D Network
May 2020

Abbreviations:

  • RIKEN AIP: RIKEN Center for Advanced Intelligence Project
  • NICT: National Institute of Information and Communications Technology
  • AIST: National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology