"There are significant possibilities for joint research and commercial development between French engineering expertise, especially within IT and AI, and Norwegian companies."

The Chamber opens its doors to Mrs. Emilie Lachaud, Industrial Partnership Manager at CEA List and Mr. Christian Bendiksen, Partner at Bull & Co.


Emilie, how would you introduce the missions and ambitions of the CEA and CEA List where you are working ? 

The CEA is a key player in research, serving the state, the economy and citizens. It provides concrete solutions to their needs in four main areas: energy transition, digital transition, technologies for the medicine of the future, defense and security. 

The CEA-List, located in the CEA-Paris-Saclay and CEA-Grenoble centers, is a CEA technological research institute dedicated to smart digital systems. Its R&D programs, focused on the Industry of the future, artificial intelligence, digital trust and digital health, contribute to the industrial competitiveness of its partners through innovation and technology transfer. The 900 engineer-researchers and technicians of the CEA-List put their expertise at the service of major socio-economic issues by offering technological innovations with high added value, centered on people and carrying values of social and environmental responsibility. The quality of its partnership research has earned CEA-List the “Institut Carnot” label in 2020 for the 4th consecutive time. 

Robustness, safety, privacy, and frugality are some of the fundamental questions that will need answers for AI to be deployed widely across cloud and embedded applications with varying degrees of criticality—from systems with high user interaction to rapidly-growing autonomous systems. CEA-List, which has been working to find answers to these questions for several years, is running an ambitious research program to support the responsible development of AI. 


Christian, in which specific areas do you see opportunities for bilateral collaboration on A.I.? 

I think there are several promising opportunities for bilateral cooperation. Initially, I note that more and more Norwegians are waking up to the need for language models that are (legally…) trained on European languages and text, as well as aligned according to European values. And there France has a significant advantage as Mistral is already there and operational.  

Furthermore, I also believe that there are significant possibilities for joint research and commercial development between French engineering expertise, especially within IT and AI, and Norwegian companies who often are very advanced in applied technology. We have seen several examples of this lately, both within proptech but also in more general AI.  


You are co-chairing the new Tech / A.I. committee of The French-Norwegian Chamber of Commerce (CCFN), what are your ambitions? 

Our main goals are to build more bridges between private, public, academic and R&D organisations from both countries. We see plenty of synergies to explore further between the two countries. France and Norway can also play a leading role when it comes to European sovereignty and ethical aspects. Gathering experts from both countries during our committee meetings will support the administration of the French-Norwegian Chamber of Commerce focusing on the right topics and organizing events with impact.  


What will be the main milestones of the committee in the coming month? 

Emilie :  

France is extremely dynamic in AI. On 13th March, the French AI commission  submitted a report to President Emmanuel Macron. The French AI commission is made by 15 experts commissioned by the prime minister's office in September 2023. The report comprises 25 recommendations to make France a major player in the technological revolution of artificial intelligence. Some of these recommendations implies directly Europe.  

In the next months, our goal is to share these conclusions of this report and to use our French-Norwegian collaboration to leverage AI in our industries and societies.

Christian :  

As Emilie says, we are planning a series of initiatives in order to facilitate the application of AI with European values, both commercially and within research and we are working with several partners in order to make this happen. One of the main initiatives will be the French-Norwegian Responsible A.I Forum to be held in Oslo on the 10th of October. An event organized by the Chamber of Commerce in cooperation with both embassies, Innovation Norway… and of course the A.I. committee.  


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