This Call for Expression of Interest (CEI) is for innovative startups and SMEs wishing to contribute to the Confiance.ai programme through technologies that could help to overcome the programme’s obstacles and implement the trustworthy AI engineering environment for critical systems.
Calendar of the Call for Expression of Interest
- February 24th, 2023: launch of the Call;
- March 7th, 2023, from 10 am to 12 pm: online information meeting for all interested contributors
- March 31st, 2023, 6 pm: deadline for submitting responses;
- April and May 2023: interviews;
- June 2023: announcement of selected startups;
- September 2023: start of work;
The Call for Expression of Interest
The objective of this CEI is to find innovative startups and SMEs to contribute to the Confiance.ai programme through technologies that can help to overcome the programme’s obstacles and implement the trustworthy AI engineering environment for critical systems, the programme’s main expected outcome.
The main scientific and technological obstacles facing the Confiance.ai programme are presented below; however, this list does not exclude companies proposing complementary technologies that are considered particularly interesting, even if they are not identified as programme priorities:
- Methods for defining the volume and annotation criteria of data necessary for learning;
- Identification and qualification of biases in data/knowledge;
- More generally:
- Access rights and data security, federated learning, and GDPR compliance;
- Connection between system requirements and the performance specifications to be met by components;
- Link between the definition of the ODD (Operational Design Domain) and the characterisation of the learning, validation and test databases;
- Hybrid methods for improving trust (robustness, explainability, monitoring, etc.) and for NLP or planning use cases.
The “Confiance.ai” program
Artificial intelligence is now critical to the competitiveness of French industry, but still demands extensive research and innovation to reach its full potential. Above all, the integration and safe use of AI technologies are essential to support the engineering, development, dissemination and use of innovative products and services.
“Industrialising artificial intelligence” for critical systems is one of the main goals of the Grand Défi public investment programme “Ensuring the security, reliability and certification of systems based on artificial intelligence”, one of the major challenges identified by the Council for Innovation. The “Confiance.ai” programme is the first of the three Grand Défi pillars, aiming to provide an environment to support design, validation and testing in order to build trust and work towards AI system certification.
“Confiance.ai”, a four-year, €45 million programme, began at the end of 2020 with a group of nine leading industrial players and four research institutes. Through a call for expression of interest targeting academic laboratories, as well as a call to innovative startups and SMEs, the partnership has grown and now includes some forty entities. At the end of 2021, the programme delivered to its partners2 a first version of the environment resulting from work conducted throughout the year. Successive versions broadening the technical scope will be developed through to the end of 2024.
How to respond to this Call for Expressions of Interest?
Responses to the CEI should not exceed three pages and include the following:
- Presentation of the lab, the team and the researchers involved;
- Motives for contributing to the “Confiance.ai” programme;
- Methods and tools available, proposed approach;
- Estimate of the budget and time necessary for the project (estimate to be fine-turned later);
- Bibliographic references;
- A response template is provided;
Contact to send your answer: firstname.lastname@example.org
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