May 15, 2019 – Halifax, Nova Scotia
Artificial intelligence (AI) is a set of complex and powerful technologies that will touch or transform every sector and industry in Canada. It has the power to help us address some of our most challenging problems, from improving Canadians’ health to fighting climate change. It will also introduce new sources of job creation and sustainable economic growth. Canada has already started harnessing AI through the AI supercluster, based in Montréal.
Today, the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, announced the launch of the Advisory Council on Artificial Intelligence. This is the next step in the Government of Canada’s comprehensive approach to supporting this important new sector. The Minister announced the creation of the Council while in Paris for the G7 meeting of Digital Ministers. The theme of this year’s meeting is “Building Digital Trust Together.” Participants will reflect on the parameters required to foster innovation while building trust in digital societies and economies.
The council will advise the Government of Canada on how best to build on Canada’s AI strengths, identify opportunities to create economic growth that benefits all Canadians and ensure that AI advancements reflect Canadian values. The Government is committed to promoting a human-centric approach to AI, grounded in human rights, transparency and openness. These values will ensure that we can increase trust and accountability in AI while protecting our democratic values, processes and institutions.
Specifically, the council will establish a working group on commercializing value from Canadian-owned AI and data analytics, building on the work started by the Digital Industries Economic Strategy Table. It will also provide advice on how best to advance the goals laid out in the Canada-France Statement on Artificial Intelligence and will support Canada’s participation in various international engagements such as the G7, the G20, the OECD and the World Economic Forum.
The advisory council will be co-chaired by Foteini Agrafioti, Chief Science Officer for the Royal Bank of Canada, and Yoshua Bengio, Scientific Director of the Montreal Institute for Learning Algorithms.
Members of the advisory council also include:
“Artificial intelligence is more than just a new product or service. It has the potential to help us solve some of the most difficult challenges we face, create jobs and growth across all industries, and improve the lives of all Canadians. The advisory council will help us capitalize on Canada’s leadership in AI in ways that upholds Canadian values of inclusiveness and diversity so that all Canadians can participate in and benefit from the digital economy.”
– The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development
“Artificial intelligence has enormous potential to help us design the responsive digital services that Canadians demand, but it must be used ethically and responsibly. The Advisory Council on Artificial intelligence will give us essential expertise from across industry, academia and government to make sure we use AI in a way that is transparent, deliberate and accountable.”
– The Honourable Joyce Murray, President of the Treasury Board and Minister of Digital Government
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