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Faculty facts and data 2013/2014

INRIA and the Collège de France are renewing their partnership

Michel Cosnard
p. 95-96
Cet article est une traduction de :
Inria et le Collège de France renouvellent leur partenariat

Notes de la rédaction

Source: La lettre, no. 38, June 2014

Texte intégral

1In November 2009, the Collège de France in partnership with INRIA created the Chair of “Informatics and Digital Sciences”, for a period of five years.

Gérard Berry, Designing, modelling and mastering computation in informatics (2009/2010)

2This creation, a strong symbol of recognition of informatics, is owed to the support of Pierre Corvol, the Collège’s Administrator at the time, and that of the professors, particularly Pierre-Louis Lions (Partial Differential Equations and their Application, 1992). Great scientists working in France or the United States have successively held this Chair, and thus enabled us to discover some of the facets of informatics and its applications.

3Gérard Berry, the first Chairholder, started off in 2010 by considering ways of “Conceiving of, Modelling and Mastering Computing”. This was a great inauguration for a Chair whose successive incumbents have successfully articulated societal issues to the state of the art in digital sciences. Gérard Berry defined the question in very broad yet precise terms, investigating the notions of computability, parallelism and modelling. As an experienced teacher, he then took this inaugural lecture to various audiences in different countries and in different languages.

4In 2011, informatics security specialist Martin Abadi temporarily left Silicon Valley for the Collège de France. Core to his teaching were computer security issues, in the era of the Web and of the generalization of open systems. Questions of identity, anonymity and private data protection were discussed, and the general models of security, protection techniques and mechanisms, along with their claims, limits and flaws, were demonstrated.

Bernard Chazelle, Algorithms and Science (2012/2013)

5In 2012 Serge Abiteboul presented another facet of digital science research: data science, a crucial subject in view of the growth and “massification” of data. In 2013, Bernard Chazelle came from Princeton to highlight algorithms’ potential in the development of other sciences (physics, biology, etc.). Finally, on 10 April 2014, Nicholas Ayache completed the five-year cycle by describing the “virtual patient” and the challenges of so-called digital medicine, a sub-branch of informatics research that combines high-level medical research with imaging, modelling and simulation.

Martin Abadi, Computer Security (2010/2011)

6In view of the quality of the Chairs and the success of their lecture series, the Collège de France and INRIA have decided to renew their partnership for a three-year period, thanks to the strong support of Serge Haroche, the current Collège’s Administrator, Pierre Corvol, now president of the Fondation du Collège de France, and several professors. We hope that these three years will see one of the great female scientists of our fields have the honour of delivering an inaugural lecture [The Chair is currently being held in 2014/2015 by Marie-Paule Cani, who specializes in 3D Digital Design and was the first woman appointed to that annual post].

Serge Abiteboul, Data Sciences: From first-order logic to the Web (2011/2012)

7And the next generation is taking over: in 2011 Sylvain Arlot, a junior researcher of the Willow Project team, delivered one of the two Peccot courses, awarded to mathematicians under the age of 30. Jonathan Touboul, of the Mycenae project team, is pursuing his work with the Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in Biology (CIRB). With a transdisciplinary approach, he is contributing to shedding light on the functioning of cor-
tical areas of the brain, thereby furthering our understanding of its normal and pathological behaviours.

Nicholas Ayache, From Medical Imaging to the Digital Patient (2013 / 2014)

8Gérard Berry has now been elected to hold one of the Collège de France’s permanent Chairs. In 2012, the Collège de France decided to create a new Chair of “Algorithms, Machines and Languages”, and its incumbent is none other than the first annual Chair of “Informatics and Digital Sciences”. INRIA is delighted with this initiative and would like to thank the Collège de France warmly.

9We hope that the existence of these Chairs linked to informatics and digital sciences, in the prestigious institution that is the Collège de France, will help to introduce them into the syllabi of the French education system. While we are proud that an “Informatics and Digital Sciences” area of specialization exists in some scientific high-school senior year courses, we should strive to have such teaching offered everywhere and to every-
one. The world is becoming digital, said Gérard Berry; it is therefore crucial for our country to provide everyone with the main keys to this new world. The same goes for France’s place in the digital world, be it from a societal, scientific or economic point of view.

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Table des illustrations

Légende Gérard Berry, Designing, modelling and mastering computation in informatics (2009/2010)
Fichier image/png, 10M
Légende Bernard Chazelle, Algorithms and Science (2012/2013)
Fichier image/png, 16M
Légende Martin Abadi, Computer Security (2010/2011)
Fichier image/png, 18M
Légende Serge Abiteboul, Data Sciences: From first-order logic to the Web (2011/2012)
Fichier image/jpeg, 444k
Légende Nicholas Ayache, From Medical Imaging to the Digital Patient (2013 / 2014)
Fichier image/png, 10M
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Référence papier

Michel Cosnard, « INRIA and the Collège de France are renewing their partnership », La lettre du Collège de France, 9 | -1, 95-96.

Référence électronique

Michel Cosnard, « INRIA and the Collège de France are renewing their partnership », La lettre du Collège de France [En ligne], 9 | 2015, mis en ligne le 28 septembre 2015, consulté le 01 décembre 2020. URL : ; DOI :

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Michel Cosnard

CEO of INRIA (Institut National de Recherche en Informatique et en Automatique)

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