Artificial intelligence: developing research and skills

In 2018, the University of Bordeaux launched its AI strategy, designed to contribute to the national drive for artificial intelligence research. Since then, several key industrial players have partnered up with the university and the projects launched have received recognition.

Photo : Robocup © Tom Schulze
Robocup © Tom Schulze

Since 2018, the University has defined a genuine strategy to integrate artificial intelligence into its development.

The Bordeaux Artificial Intelligence Alliance (BAIA) was created in 2018 to officialise the association between the University of Bordeaux and some of its major scientific partners: Bordeaux INP, CNRS, Inria and INSERM as well as many industrialists.

The goal was to contribute to the national research strategy in artificial intelligence.

Bordeaux is now a leading digital innovation centre in France and Europe, home to a thriving ecosystem of 29 start-ups with a link to artificial intelligence.


The Robocup, the largest robotics and artificial intelligence competition in the world, which was postponed due to the public health crisis, will be held in Bordeaux in 2023. Nearly 500 international competitors and over 40,000 visitors will take part in the event. The University of Bordeaux, committed to the field of AI, will obviously be well represented.

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Several academic chairs established

In Bordeaux, three permanent university teaching and research positions, or chairs, have been officially designated in artificial intelligence. 


  • DeepCuriosity, headed by Pierre-Yves Oudeyer in partnership with the University of Bordeaux Inria centre, Ensta ParisTech and Poëtis. It aims to lay the foundations of a new scientific approach to AI, by studying the modelling of cognitive development in children and the mechanisms of curiosity. 
  • GrAI Green, headed by Sylvain Saïghi in partnership with the CNRS, Bordeaux INP, Yumain, and the PSA group, is focusing on the excessive energy consumed by artificial intelligence. The project seeks to design new material substrates and new calculation paradigms to reduce the energy consumption of these systems. Hence, the Bordeaux AI strategy applications are manifold.
  • INTENDED aims to develop intelligent methods to improve access to imperfect data, to enable reliable decision making. Headed by Meghyn Bienvenu in partnership with the CNRS and the Bordeaux University Hospital (CHU), it is striving to improve automatic reasoning in AI.

More and more doctoral contracts

The University of Bordeaux intends to be one of the leading figures in the integration of artificial intelligence into PhD research.

In 2020, the University won the "doctoral programmes in artificial intelligence" call for projects, coordinated by the French National Research Agency (ANR).

The university's project, created together with the University of Bordeaux Inria centre, is making the Bordeaux metropolitan area a reference for AI.

The strategy is to attract national and international talent to the doctoral programmes, and to double the number of PhDs in AI by 2025 by increasing the funding opportunities.

Ceremony for Mathematics & Computer Science doctoral graduates @ Gautier Dufau
Ceremony for Mathematics & Computer Science doctoral graduates @ Gautier Dufau

Spreading knowledge about AI

The University of Bordeaux is contributing to the transmission of knowledge about artificial intelligence and supporting two open online courses (MOOCs) on introductory AI.

Objective: AI

Designed by the Institut Montaigne, OpenClassrooms and the Abeona Foundation, the course (Objectif IA) presents AI from A to Z.
It provides the keys to understanding and avenues to explore, in particular about the changes that AI brings about in society.

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Artificial intelligence... intelligently!

Two Inria researchers attended the citizen MOOC Artificial intelligence... intelligently! (Intelligence artificielle... avec intelligence!) on the FUN platform. Open to all, the course raises questions and deciphers AI to better understand the issues at stake.

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  • Charlotte Cosin

    Programme Officer