The Ocean Campus will involve the redevelopment of a total of 64 hectares, in Lisbon and Oeiras. With an investment of 300 million euros, from mostly private funds, the campus will create multifunctional and environmentally sustainable spaces and teaching units, and will promote technological development and innovative research.
On this campus, the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation (CGF) will create the Center for Research on the Effects of Environmental Changes on Human Health and Ecosystems, and the Champalimaud Foundation (CF) will create the Advanced Center for the Development of Artificial Intelligence (AI).
Some activities of the Instituto Gulbenkian Ciência (IGC) will be relocated to the CGF part of the campus, and the new centre here will study, for example, the factors that control our relationship with microbes over time – from good bacteria that live within infectious nodes to organisms such as viruses – utilising advanced experimental technologies, as well as innovative, quantitative, digital and theoretical approaches.
In the CF part of the campus, there will be a Centre dedicated to AI, together with a Scientific Incubator, which will include a computer and data storage centre, experimental laboratories, facilities for hardware development, spaces for advanced training courses, areas for startups and areas for commercial, service or industrial partnerships.
Through the creation of its AI incubator, CF aims to develop the ideal environment for advancing our understanding and application of AI. This structure will make it possible to reap the most benefit from investments in this crucial area, making progress in research with a strong impact on the alleviation of human diseases and on all other sectors of society covered by AI.
CF's mission and values are fully in tune with promoting interactions between science, medicine and industry. In the context of this exchange, CF already develops activities of excellence in several areas of interest, including the application of Machine Learning to medical imaging and precision medicine. The versatility and interconnection between research, clinical practice and CF platforms allow the adaptation of existing resources to the service of cutting-edge innovations and new needs.
Over the past few years, CF has proved to be a fertile ground for startups and its researchers have ended up founding companies to support the development of research technologies (NeuroGEARS, OEPS) and clinical applications (Kineticos, Limm Therapeutics). In addition, CF is able to act as an incubator for this type of project, promoting interaction between researchers, engineers, clinicians and other professionals.
The time has now come to apply CF's experience, knowledge and methodology to drive the AI revolution. In order to effectively lead the development of AI, and benefit medicine and society, organisations are needed that provide the multidisciplinarity and flexibility necessary to think outside the box, in search of new solutions. CF is one of these organisations.