The diSummit goes virtual on request of many members andpartners of the AI and Data Science Community in Belgium: Virtual Data Innovation Summit (Virtual DI Summit). Due to the COVID-19pandemic, it is not possible to have an in-person event. However, we areorganizing a full year online program starting end of August with, e.g., webcasts,videos, blogs, and more. What is on the Virtual DI Summit program in the coming months?
The theme of the first Virtual DI Summit program is ‘AI for Everyone’. Our objective is to make AI accessible for everyone by showing practical AI-applications from a business- and a technical point of view. Besides, we bring you in contact with global and local market players, as well as the full AI and Data Science Community in Belgium and beyond.
icity.brussels is a technology hub focussing on helping Brussels emerge as the ICT Heart of Europe. Actively participating in the Virtual DI Summit as a technology partner is a powerful way to achieve this. — Claudio Truzzi
DI Virtual Summit 2020 program
The Virtual DI Summit program starts with monthly webcasts focussing on meaningful, practical AI applications. Once a month, we organize for you two live-webcasts: Bizz Tuesday and Tech Wednesday. The Bizz Tuesday webcast is business-oriented and begins with an inspiring keynote by an expert in, e.g., FinTech, HealthTech, Industry 4.0, GovTech, Telco- & EnergyTech, Ethics, and more. It is followed up by in-depth, purposeful, real-life cases from our partners that provide you insight into business problems, solutions, and technology. On the monthly Tech Wednesday, various technical experts explain how they build their specific AI applications. Besides webcasts, we also plan to create valuable AI content, for example, videos, blogs, podcasts, and share it with you via social media. We aim to make AI accessible to everyone.
As the founder of the Data Science Community in Belgium, and one of the driving forces of AI4Belgium, I fully support Desiree in extending the annual, famous diSummit with a full-year Virtual DI Summit program — Philippe van Impe
Virtual DI Summit committee
Currently, the Virtual DI Summit committee consists of Philippe van Impe, CEO at European Data Innovation Hub, Claudio Truzzi, Portfolio Manager at icity.brussels, and myself, Desiree Timmermans – Business Owner at HelpToGrowBusiness. You are welcome to partner up, become a speaker, or join us for an internship, e.g., content creator, at the Virtual Data Innovation Summit.
My goal is to make AI accessible for everyone by providing you AI knowledge and experience virtually. — Desiree Timmermans
Why Brussels is the best place to open a European HQ for tech companies.
A recent report from EY shows that 2018 was an absolute record year for attracting foreign direct investments (FDI). A total of 278 foreign investment projects were initiated, representing a 29% increase on the previous year and creating an all-time high number of jobs (7,363). With this increase, Belgium is going against the European trend. More than 1500 international companies’ HQ are now already established in Brussels. The capital of Europe has everything a company needs: an open economy, business incentives and services, a strong infrastructure, and a talent pool of multilingual, highly skilled professionals in all sectors. Being the world’s 2nd most cosmopolitan city and located at the crossroads of Western European cultures, this is actually not very surprising.
Belgium has also essential assets regarding Artificial Intelligence (AI). It has a tradition of world-class AI researchers, some of whom were at the cradle of artificial intelligence. Additionally, Belgium ranks 9th in the “Digital Economy and Society Index” within the EU with a society that largely embraces AI as a novel and promising technology rather than a threat.
Prof Dr Hugues Bersini, founder of the AI lab of the ULB
Prof Dr Ingrid Daubechies, The most cited Belgian mathematician, recognized for her study of the mathematical methods that enhance image-compression technology
Belgian employees are among the leaders in the use of artificial intelligence in the workplace. 54% of employees are already confronted with artificial intelligence at work or expect this to happen in the next two years. The Belgians are also predominantly positive about the use of AI at work. More than six in ten say that AI has a positive effect on their productivity.
The Brussels Region also supports companies in their AI endeavours, both from innovation, technical, finance and a business point of view.
Innoviris, the Brussels Region funding body, has been providing significant support to AI-related research and innovation, steadily ramping up its support programs in this field, with a dedicated budget of € 20M over the past 2 years. In particular, an AI call (“Team Up”) aimed at fostering collaboration between academia and industry was launched in 2017. This program reflects the Brussels Region approach to AI development, which emphasises collaborative research and open innovation.
For the technical aspects, one can mention the leading role of Sirris Brussels, through its Elucidata laboratory, and of the Icity.Brussels technology hub, both co-funded by the Brussels Region and ERDF
The finance.brussels group SRIB/GIMB aims at providing financial support for the creation, reorganisation or expansion of private companies located in the region. In addition to investment, they support entrepreneurs in all phases of their company’s development. BRUSTART provides financial solutions to young innovative companies that are in the launching or starting-up phase. It supports technological innovation through the seed-capital fund, which is directed towards spin-offs.
As for the business aspects, the Region Brussels Capital launched in 2017 the Nexttech.brussels plan coordinated by hub.brussels and gathers main entities involved in AI in the Region. Moreover, hub.brussels and its cluster software.brussels provide tailor-made support and advice.
One other important aspect of the Brussels is their support for the Tech communities. The Region expects to continue building on the success of the Data Science Community, made of AI experts and practitioners. This community counts several thousand members and organizes more than a hundred events per year and one European Data Innovation Summit. The region has co-financed a dedicated tech and starter Hub called DigitYser where communities can gather to boost their digital skills and raise awareness on AI and data literacy.
DigitYser also is the regional driver of AI4Belgium the community-led approach to enable Belgian people and organisations to capture the opportunities of AI while facilitating the ongoing transition responsibly. AI 4 Belgium has the ambition to position Belgium in the European AI landscape. We are currently assisting the newly elected government to define their AI strategy based on the European recommendations.
The Brussels’ AI strategy is based on 6 pillars
Data literacy and AI training for all
Support R&D and promote innovation
Setting up a responsible data strategy and promote open data
Promote the use of AI in the private industries & SME’s
Promote the use of AI in the public sector
Position Brussels as the driving AI city of Europe
Betacowork – Coworking and Community for freelancers & entrepreneurs.
DigitYser – The home of the AI & datascience community in Brussels
Brussels and Antwerp are in the top 15 hubs of artificial intelligence talent in Europe, according to a new report from the international venture capital firm Atomico. That is one of the conclusions in ‘The State of European Tech‘, a new report from venture firm Atomico and the Finnish tech conference Slush published in 2016. Atomico and Slush use LinkedIn data as a source for their conclusions. To be more precise: cities with the highest amount of LinkedIn members with AI skills.
Our main argument is that Brussels is also a very pleasant place to live and a family-friendly environment blessed with a welcoming heart. A business city teeming with opportunities, but also a relaxing home, ideal for enjoying life’s sweeter side. Lying at the crossroads of Western Europe’s cultures while being home to so many citizens from all over the world definitely makes Brussels a human-sized global city where local culture and cosmopolitanism get along perfectly.
So in summary here are the top 7 reasons to put Brussels in your shortlist:
Located in the centre of Europe,
Low cost of living and high quality of life,
Available AI talent at an acceptable price
Top universities and innovation programs,
Practical Regional & Federal support,
Very active AI communities and expert groups
Tech & starters’ hubs to host and support your new venture
Looking at this it is not surprising that Brussels has become the best place to open a European HQ for a tech company.
About the author:
Philippe Van Impe is the driver of the AI & data science community of Belgium, the founder of DigitYser – the tech & starters’ hub of Brussels and a business coach for companies who wants to start their European HQ in Brussels.
Le Disummit, le rendez-vous organisé par et pour la communauté belge travaillant sur l’intelligence artificielle (IA) et la science des données, se tiendra mercredi sur le campus du Solbosch de l’Université libre de Bruxelles (ULB).
Environ 900 personnes sont attendues pour cette 5e édition placée sous le thème “Être humain à l’ère de l’intelligence artificielle”. Si cet événement est d’abord à destination des entreprises et des professionnels du secteur, il s’ouvre à moindre coût aux étudiants et à des tarifs réduits au grand public. Une trentaine d’exposants, parmi lesquels Hub.brussels et des leaders technologiques comme Accenture, Fujitsu, IBM et Microsoft, présenteront leurs derniers produits. De plus, 40 intervenants animeront des conférences, et 12 master classes ainsi que 12 ateliers pratiques permettront d’aller plus loin en s’attardant sur certains projets. Invité de premier ordre, Luc Julia, responsable de l’innovation chez Samsung qui a travaillé sur Siri, la commande vocale d’Apple, viendra parler de son livre “L’intelligence artificielle n’existe pas”, dans lequel il préfère parler d’intelligence augmentée développée grâce à des outils de traitement de données, qui permettent de prendre de meilleures décisions. Il y aura également Stephen Brobst, Chief Technology Officer de la société Teradata qui a conseillé l’ancien président américain Barack Obama sur les questions relatives au big data. Il abordera quant à lui la gestion des biais dans les données.
Le Disummit vise à créer un pont entre l’académique et le business en informant le management des grandes sociétés sur les possibles de l’IA et les académiciens sur les attentes actuelles dans le secteur. “La Belgique a toujours eu de très bons résultats dans toutes les sciences quantitatives par rapport aux autres pays“, estime l’organisateur Philippe Van Impe, fondateur et CEO de l’ASBL DigitYser. “Elle a donc les compétences requises pour aborder cette vague de l’intelligence artificielle, mais elle ne doit pas se tromper de cible et bien choisir ses batailles. Elle ne peut pas se battre contre les grands centres américains de recherche et développement comme Google ou Amazon.” “Je propose de se battre avec des armes propres, pour une intelligence artificielle éthique, en permettant à tous ces outils d’intelligence artificielle développés ailleurs d’atterrir dans l’espace européen, qui est probablement le plus complexe au monde avec les différentes langues, les différents niveaux de gouvernement, les réglementations multiples…“, poursuit Philippe Van Impe. “Avec son approche pragmatique qui lui permet de toujours arriver à un compromis, la Belgique a les atouts pour devenir le point d’entrée des Américains, des Chinois ou des Indiens sur le marché européen“. Philippe Van Impe remarque de plus que le cadre européen qui a été posé pour commencer à régenter le respect de la vie privée et l’éthique dans l’intelligence artificielle peut réfréner des pays qui n’en disposent pas ou peu.
We are now mere 4 weeks away from what is already known as the best diSummit ever. I am so excited to send you this message to update you regarding the interesting recent developments. The entire AI tribe will be present at this prestigious event so make sure to make yourself present and have a once in a lifetime experience!
The moment you have been waiting for is finally here: the agenda is now available online. We still expect a few more workshops and master classes to be added, with numerous companies presenting business cases
Inspiring project presentations
Over the course of the day you will be invited to follow business cases presented by the big names of the corporate world. This will inform you about what drove them to select that specific AI project. We will also have engaging presentations from AXA, Essent, P&V, Carrefour amongst other business cases
All partners from past editions, in addition to new partners, signed up to showcase their AI expertise. There is also a Job Fair where you have the opportunity to check outstanding job vacancies.
In a rapidly evolving world, keeping up with technological advancements is an absolute essential. The master classes and hands-on workshops we scheduled will hopefully help you to update your skillset and thereby broaden your horizons.
For those who already participated to previous events we have prepared a higher discount rate. You can find this discount in the previous email we sent you.
60 startups & scale-ups have been nominated for the AI-Awards. Stijn, the CTO from Collibra, is inviting each CEO to an executive lunch. However, the participants of the diSummit will select the AI-Award winners.
No doubt this event, like last year, will be wrapped up with a great party at the lawn in front of the K-building at ULB. We hope you can join us for this fun adventure and potentially make networks and friendships that could last a lifetime
Oh yes and we are looking for volunteers to give us a hand. So if you have a few hours just join our team of volunteers.
PS: Check out our agenda and our videos.
I’m pleased to introduce you to your new partner manager Mrs Désirée Timmermans.
Désirée is passionate about IT, marketing, and organizations. Her experience as marketing manager for major IT companies is helping us a lot to understand what the partners of the diSummit really expect. She will be our partner satisfaction manager, making sure each partner gets the maximum out of his investment.
AI in Belgium is booming, and we are in this journey together with you.
This year, all members of the #AI4Belgium and #datascience community meet at the ULB for a full day event focusing on being human in the world of #AI.
The diSummit 2019 gives you the opportunity to be actively part of the entire ecosystem built around the artificial intelligence initiatives and meetups in Belgium. Around 1000 datascience enthusiasts attend this last big gathering before the summer. You will meet the people that delivered the first AI projects in Belgium, and also have the chance to meet the most inspiring startups. In addition, you will experience that #AI is an essential tool to deliver successful projects.
To inspire you, we invited some key international opinion leaders:
Dr Luc Julia led the Apple team who developed SIRI. Now, he is driving the innovation team of Samsung.
Dr Stephen Brobst is a former advisor of president Obama on big data issues and was one of America’s Top 5 CTO’s.
During the event, three AI-Awards are announced: best AI-Project, most promising startup, and AI personality of the year. The winners are elected by you and the other participants of the diSummit.
Do you like what you have read? Contact Desiree and check out how your company can get into the spotlight and meet new prospects. We prepared different partnering options for you and your prospects on disummit.org, and on May 29th we organize a special diSummit partner pre-meeting at the ULB to ensure you get the most out of your partnership.
I’m looking forward to meeting you during your video recording and at the speaker’s dinner on June 13th at DigitYser.
Philippe Van Impe
diSummit: +32 2 808 85 64
On June 26th the AI4Belgium & Data Science Community will hold their 5th annual Summit. You can expect a day packed with innovative ideas and discussions, lots of networking opportunities and perhaps most importantly a chance to have fun with professionals from a wide array of backgrounds.
Like last year our event will take place at the ULB in Brussels in building K. On the main stage we will have 45 esteemed speakers who will seek to inspire you and 6 other parallel tracks. We have also prepared 12 master classes on topics as diverse and critical as ethics, recruiting and architecture as well as 12 workshops for the more hands-on people .
Furthermore, the Job fair will be bigger and better than ever before! There will be a space for the regional AI-initiatives and like last year a partner village will be on the ground floor.
In addition to this, this year we are adding the AI Awards to reward the most interesting AI-projects and the most promising AI-startup.
On June 26th the AI & Data Science Community of Belgium will hold its 5th annual Summit. You can expect a day packed with innovative ideas, lots of networking opportunities and FUN.
Like last year our event takes place at the ULB in Brussels, 7 // tracks with 40 speakers, 12 master classes and 12 hands-on workshops. The Jobfair will be bigger and the partner village will be on the ground floor.
This year we are adding the AI Awards to reward the most interesting AI-projects and the most promissing AI-startup.
The sooner you book your ticket the lower its price and the sooner you will be able to connect to the mobile app. You will be able to start networking even before the event starts and get valuable information about each speaker, participant and exhibiting company. The app is also used to vote for the AI-Awards.
Keep an eye on our website to find out more about our exceptional line up of speakers, Master Classes and Hands-On workshops.
The Ai & Datascience community of Belgium wants to honour the most interesting projects and the most promising startups during the diSummit.
With the #AI Awards we want to engage the entire community to nominate and select the best European projects/startups. We have a plan to bundle all of these projects and startups and distibute the information to all the participants.
We’re looking for diverse speakers in the fields of Artificial Intelligence & Data Science: Human, Technical, Social, Democratic Legal & Ethical aspects. We engage in avoiding all male panels and each year work toward a more representative selections of speakers at our events.
After Denmark and Finland published their strategies last week, Belgium released its own plan Monday. Ministers De Backer & De Croo were joined by Commission Vice President Andrus Ansip in Brussels forthe presentation, which — like Europe’s grand plan for AI — asserts that AI will create jobs in high-end industries and manufacturing, with ethics as a guiding idea.
This article was originally written by Politico.
A survey out this morning, seen by POLITICO, shows that Belgians are enthusiastic about the benefits of AI. But it also raises red flags about public support, with 85 percent of respondents saying they were concerned about the privacy implications of AI technology. Belgium still has some convincing to do, just as the rest of Europe does.
Meanwhile the EU’s high-level expert groupmeetstoday and tomorrow to finalize non-binding guidelines for “trustworthy” AI to be released in early April. Members will also start to discuss their next report, which focuses on boosting European investment into AI and is due for publication early this summer.
Though it’s non-binding, that second document will set the tone for what sort of regulation, if any, is needed. The group remains deeply divided. Some members argue that Europe should control its urge to regulate and let courts issue rulings as the technology progresses. Other argue that Europe needs to establish rules early in the game so as to influence AI standards worldwide.
Your Morning Tech team will discuss those questionswith decisionmakers from across the board tonight and tomorrow at this year’s“AI: Innovation & Governance” Summit here in Brussels. There will be plenty of debate about Europe’s “ethics-first” approach to catching up with China and the United States. Views on Europe’s attitude range from “it’s an act of genius” to “slow suicide.” Clickhere or scroll down for Janosch Delcker’s dive into how the world views Europe’s principle-based approach to innovation.
It is also time to submit your proposal for the #ai-awards that will be announced at the #disummit2019.
We had in total 175 people registered for S05E03 meetup of the #datascience community of Brussels. 3 legaltech companies demonstrated how they are using datascience to offer better legal services.
Our speakers explained that the data in the legal industry is mainly words and explained us their approach to process vast amounts of unstructured data through Natural Language Processing techniques (NLP).
The event was held in the clubhouse of the AI & Datascience community at DigitYser on February 7th, 2019. Like always it started with a happy hour at 18:00. All presentations were recorded by Ricardo head of the technical team of DigitYser and made available on our different channels. Youtube – Twitter – Facebook.
Presentation 1 started at 19:00:
How Reacfin proposed to use NLP and deeplearning to check conformity of legal and contractual documents in the re-assurance business.
Reacfinexplained us a use case in the re-insurance business. They used NLP to automate the review of huge contracts. Aurélien Couloumy, head of data science, led us through their step by step approach to tackle this issue using Spacy.
Presentation 2 started at 19:25:
How Jetpack.AI won the #hackBXLaw in November 2018.
The winners of the hackathon on debt recovery, Jetpack.ai, explained their problem solving approach that led them to win the contest and develop their tool: Magpie.
Dodo Chochitaichvili and Gautier Krings explained us how lawyers and data scientists worked together using an agile methodology & KISS principles where the first iteration was the production of a skateboard.
Presentation 3 started at 19:50:
Darts-IP explained how AI combined with high quality data is revolutionising Intellectual Property practices.@
The managing director of Darts-ip, Evrard Van Zuylen, and the data scientist, Vignesh Baskaran, aka Vicky introduced the technology they develop to create a comprehensive database on patents around the globe. They explained the data science process management that lead to their competitive advantage. ”