On November 21st the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology hosted the inaugural Technion-Waterloo Research Symposium. The two-day conference was part of an ongoing collaboration between the Technion and the University of Waterloo (UW) in Canada.
The ties between the two institutions were established in 2014 with the signing of an agreement aimed at accelerating breakthroughs in collaborative research and commercialization opportunities in priority areas of national and international importance; namely water, nanotechnology, artificial intelligence, and quantum computing and technology. The agreement was supported by the Gerald Schwartz and Heather Reisman Foundation and includes support for workshops and for 11 research projects, one of which has already borne a spin-off company, as well as for research grants totaling some $3.4 million.
Vice President of the Technion for External Relations and Resource Development Prof. Boaz Golany spoke about the importance of cooperation and of the university’s extensive and in-depth entry into new fields, including cyber and artificial intelligence. He noted the great achievement in setting up the Helen Diller Center for Quantum Science, Matter and Engineering at the Technion and added that the two universities have many points in common, including the recruitment of female faculty.
Vice President of University Research at the University of Waterloo Charmaine Dean, conveyed the blessing of Waterloo University President Feridun Hamdullahpur. Dean said that “since the signing of the agreement, a number of very significant research studies had been launched. In the beginning, the collaboration focused on quantum information, nanotechnology and water, and today we are also supporting cybersecurity. This is an opportunity to work at the forefront of global innovation for the benefit of society and humanity as a whole.”
Prof. Derek Schipper from the University of Waterloo, who delivered the first lecture at the symposium, presented his joint research with Prof. Nir Tessler from the Technion and stressed that “this research would not have been possible without this important partnership between the Technion and the University of Waterloo.” Prof. Philippe Van Cappellen presented his joint research with Prof. Eran Friedler. The two are developing new ways to monitor populations of microorganisms underground.
The final remarks were delivered by Prof. Gadi Eisenstein, head of the Technion’s Russell Berrie Nanotechnology Institute, who also hosted several of the conference’s sessions.