On August 6, Tokyo University, the SoftBank Group, and Yahoo! announced their establishment of the most advanced AI research institution, "Beyond AI Research Promotion Organization," as well as the start of their joint research.
The institute pursues research in two directions. These are (1) cutting-edge mid and long-term AI research by researchers from Tokyo University and leading universities worldwide, and (2) high cycle research aiming at commercialization based on research results. Their aim is to build an ecosystem by allocating their returns (commercialization profits) obtained from business to further research and educational activities for developing next-generation AI human resources.
SoftBank, the SoftBank Group, and Yahoo! Japan will be contributing up to 20 billion JPY (approx. 190 million USD) in 10 years. They aim to make Japan a pioneer of academic fields beyond AI by daringly promoting research and business activities worldwide.
At the start of the joint research, 10 research leaders were appointed to pursue cutting-edge AI, along with 10 mid and long-term research themes, including the evolution of AI itself and fusion with other fields. Based on research results, the institution has also set concrete numerical objectives such as 10 commercialization and three new academic fields in 10 years. Research activities will also be conducted with an aim for commercialization from the initial stages, in collaboration with the 50-person commercialization promotion team formed by SoftBank.