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Industry advances to the next level via new AI centre at RMIT


The new RMIT Centre for Industrial AI Research and Innovation (CIAIRI) will bring leading AI researchers together with industry partners to harness new digital technologies and develop new ones to meet their business needs. 

The centre will work with partners to find tailored ways to translate research into impact within their organisations. 

“Our main aim is to translate the latest research into practise, so innovation will be at the centre of all our activities,” CIAIRI research director Professor John Thangarajah said. 

 “Australia has a strong focus on upskilling our workforce and we are also looking forward to developing people’s skills and understanding of these evolving and exciting new digital technologies.” 

The CIARI will bring national and global industry partners together with AI experts and researchers from across disciplines, according to CIARI’s recently appointed director, Professor Juerg von Kaenel. 

“We are looking forward to working with our industry partners to bring AI from a future promise of nirvana to a pragmatic approach that will solve today’s business needs,” Kaenel said. 

“Now that we’ve digitised so much and have the ability to capture so much data, AI innovations can help us push things to the next level.” 

This raises the opportunity to make AI “smarter” by using data to make recommendations and decisions through the technology. 

“Our vision is to augment the human as a user of these exciting tools, rather than replacing the human altogether,” Kaenel said. 

 One of the challenges was to remove the hype and fear around AI and enable an understanding of the opportunities ahead. 

“New things are exciting, but can also be scary, so part of CIAIRI’s responsibility will be to overcome that fear barrier for consumers,” Thangarajah said. 

“We are keen to help people understand the huge benefits of AI and give them the skills to take advantage of them. We want people to ask, ‘What can AI do to empower us and how can we work with the technology to make things better for us?’” 

“As an example, look at how far we’ve come from using the printed road maps like Melway to digitised maps like Google maps – this digitisation has created more jobs, more opportunities and more exciting ways for us to progress as a society,” he said. 

The CIAIRI will focus on: 

  •    Autonomous decision systems 
  •    Robotics and human collaboration 
  •    Machine learning 
  •    Augmented reality and games 
  •    Computer vision 
  •    Data science and business models 
  •    Natural language processing 
  •    Ethics of AI technologies 

View the CIAIRI website for more information, or email partnership enquiries to 

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