Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, visits the cutting-edge VUB AI Experience Center

Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, visits the cutting-edge VUB AI Experience Center

Press release Vrije Universiteit Brussel – Université libre de Bruxelles

The new President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen made a working visit to the AI Experience Center at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel, on the occasion of the announcement of the Commission’s plans in relation to artificial intelligence. The visit underlines the leading role of the partnership between the VUB and ULB (AI for the Common Good) for artificial intelligence in the heart of Europe. Ursula von der Leyen was welcomed by rectors Caroline Pauwels (VUB) and Yvon Englert (ULB).

The VUB AI Experience Center is a high-tech test, demonstration and meeting environment where companies, tech entrepreneurs, researchers and policy makers can experiment with AI and collaborate to develop technological solutions. 

The Center also forms part of the VUB and ULB’s joint plans to establish a Brussels-based European initiative on AI for the Common Good. The institute will focus on research, innovative applications, education and projects on the social impact of artificial intelligence in numerous fields such as health and welfare, mobility, climate and sustainability, and media.  In this regard, the institute aims to support and enable the realisation of the EU Digital Agenda.  To broaden their expertise further, both Brussels universities will also make use of international collaborative partnerships within their respective “EUTOPIA” and “CIVIS” European University projects.

The VUB and ULB have built a leading reputation through their “AI for the Common Good” project, thanks to the pioneering role played by both universities in artificial intelligence, their strong tradition of interdisciplinary working, their central location in Belgium and in Europe, and their close links with global economic actors, including the Flanders Innovation ecosystem, the Brussels Capital Region and the Region of Wallonia.


AI Experience Center


Pleinlaan 9

1050 Brussel (level -1)

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Vrije Universiteit Brussel is an internationally oriented university in Brussels, the heart of Europe. By providing excellent research and education on a human scale, VUB wants to make an active and committed contribution to a better society.

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The Vrije Universiteit Brussel assumes its scientific and social responsibility with love and decisiveness. That’s why VUB launched the platform De Wereld Heeft Je Nodig – The World Needs You, which brings together ideas, actions and projects based on six Ps. The first P stands for People, because that’s what it’s all about: giving people equal opportunities, prosperity, welfare, respect. Peace is about fighting injustice, big and small, in the world. Prosperity combats poverty and inequality. Planet stands for actions on biodiversity, climate, air quality, animal rights... With Partnership, VUB is looking for joint actions to make the world a better place. The sixth and last P is for Poincaré, the French philosopher Henri Poincaré, from whom VUB derives its motto that thinking should submit to nothing except the facts themselves. VUB is an ‘urban engaged university’, strongly anchored in Brussels and Europe and working according to the principles of free research.



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