Thursday 15 December 2022 - Brussels is now home to its own European digital innovation hub: sustAIn.brussels. The urban initiative should help Brussels businesses in their transition to using innovative technologies and artificial intelligence. VUB, ULB, Sirris, Agoria and BeCentral guide companies with advice on finance, education, skills training and improving processes and products or services by applying AI or other emerging technologies. Sustainability and the environment are central.
The new sustAIn.brussels digital innovation hub houses various players. As leading academic experts in AI and innovation, VUB and ULB, through their collaboration in FARI, the AI for the Common Good Institute, support Brussels-based companies in their sustainable and digital transition. Sirris and Agoria share their expertise on business support. BeCentral coordinates training and networking for companies. Innoviris, Brussels Economy and Employment, finance&invest.brussels and hub.brussels monitor the hub’s activities and ensure the proper functioning of the consortium. There is also support in terms of financing, guidance within the existing digital business offer, information, animation and community awareness-raising.
On Wednesday 14 December, Barbara Trachte, Brussels secretary of state for economic transition, officially launched the sustAIn.brussels project with Innoviris and hub.brussels. The three-year project, funded 50% by the Brussels-Capital Region and 50% by the European Commission’s Digital Europe programme, will have a budget of €4 million.
“Artificial intelligence and digital technology are vital for Brussels businesses and the city itself to achieve their economic and environmental ambitions,” says Trachte. “I am therefore very excited to open an artificial intelligence knowledge centre in Brussels. SustAIn.brussels is a pioneer. It is a privilege to be able to call on the expertise of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel, and I believe that the VUB/ULB collaboration with FARI, with the other actors collaborating on this European journey, can provide companies with the right help and tools to promote their digitalisation in a sustainable way.”
SustAIn.brussels contributes to five strategic objectives:
- Innovation to encourage and facilitate economic, social and environmental transition.
- Economic recovery.
- Strengthening Brussels leadership in artificial intelligence.
- Forming a gateway to Europe for Brussels-based companies.
- Facilitating the digitisation of Brussels industry.
The centre commits to supporting all Brussels-based companies that wish to explore digital transformation and the transition to eco-friendly business models, free of charge.
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