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South Korean LG AI Research expanded its global artificial intelligence ecosystem when it opened the doors of its new LG AI Research Center in Ann Arbor on March 22.

The center is led by Honglak Lee, chief AI scientist and a professor of electrical engineering and computer science at the University of Michigan. It also is expected to strengthen the company’s AI research collaboration with the Ann Arbor school.

LG AI Research also signed a memorandum of understanding with the U-M College of Engineering in February and a Master Research Agreement in March to support joint research activities on advanced AI technologies and to connect with talent. The cooperation begins in earnest with the opening of LG AI Research Center.

“Opening of the North American center is the first step for LG AI Research to enter the global scene beyond South Korea,” says Lee. “We will expand our line of sight and stretch points of contact to universities and research institutes around the world to facilitate top-level research collaborations.”

Moontae Lee, a professor at the University of Illinois also will lead research at the LG AI Research Center. Lee joined LG AI Research earlier this year and is in charge of the Fundamental Research Lab that studies large models and advanced AI technologies.

“Through our partnership with LG AI, students and faculty will be able to trade expertise with our counterparts at one of the most innovative AI research centers in the world,” says Eric Michielssen, associate dean of research at the U-M College of Engineering.

LG AI Research says it plans to strengthen open innovation by expanding industry-academic cooperation with several AI universities and research institutes in North America, starting with the U-M.

“Our faculty and students are excited to strengthen and deepen the existing cooperation with LG AI Research, to advance highly complex and interdisciplinary AI research, in areas like machine learning, natural language processing, and compositional task generalization,” says Michael Wellman, division chair of U-M’s Computer Science and Engineering Department.

LG AI Research says it believes the new center will strengthen its own research capabilities by actively recruiting North American AI talent to advance next generation AI technology.

The company conducted a recruitment briefing session for AI major graduate students at U-M the day after the opening event and says it plans to quickly expand the scope of employment to all regions of North America and lay the groundwork to become a global AI research hub.

LG AI Research Center in Ann Arbor is designed to advance AI technologies such as deep reinforcement learning, 3-D scene understanding and reasoning with a large-scale language model, and bias and fairness related to AI ethics, which are the basis for creating AI that thinks and judges on its own with the talents recruited from North America.