At this year's annual showcase, we are proud to highlight our contribution to the coordination of Kurt Langfeld's bid for the AI hub on theoretical foundations. This collaboration, earlier in the year, reflects our commitment to fostering innovative research and promoting academic excellence.
Our primary strategic objective is to enhance awareness among AI/ML researchers about the extensive research taking place across various Schools and Faculties.
Two critical observations have surfaced in this regard: the breadth of research in AI/ML across different Schools far surpasses common perceptions, and there is a considerable lack of awareness among the various departments on campus about each other's efforts. In response to this, our short-term goals are as follows:
- LIDA AI Seminar Series: We propose organizing a series of seminars, featuring speakers from different Schools on a monthly basis. These seminars will serve as a platform for knowledge exchange and networking, fostering collaboration across academic disciplines. These events are likely to take place on Wednesday afternoons in the LIDA boardroom.
- Campus AI/ML Workshop: To further bridge the gap and showcase the outstanding AI/ML research across the campus, we intend to host a workshop around the Easter break. The format and location of this workshop will be determined based on the level of interest and participation.
- Mapping Exercise: To promote a better understanding of who is engaged in AI/ML research on campus, we will conduct a comprehensive mapping exercise.
To date, we have already taken several proactive steps towards achieving these goals. We have engaged in fruitful discussions with the Physics Department and reached out to multiple researchers in the Faculty of Environment, including Transport Studies, Earth & Environment, and Geography. Additionally, we have collaborated with the Business School to identify suitable candidates who can contribute to our efforts. Similar outreach will be conducted with the Departments of Law and Languages. For the Departments of Computing, Mathematics, and Engineering, we are pursuing a more personalized approach through direct contact.
Furthermore, our commitment to building a robust AI/ML research community at Leeds is exemplified by our participation in the recruitment of an AI research software engineer, Mr. Richardson Schwendike. We actively participated in the shortlisting and interview process, ensuring that the right talent is brought on board.
In addition, we have sought permission from the Head of School for Mathematics to contact participants involved in the bid for the AI hub. This outreach aims to obtain their consent to use the information they provided for the mapping exercise. Should the members grant their permission, this will serve as the foundation for our database, facilitating better collaboration and communication among AI/ML practitioners across the University.
As we continue to work diligently on these initiatives, we look forward to a promising future of strengthened connections and a thriving AI/ML research community at the University of Leeds.