Eastern European Machine Learning (EEML) summer school

Bucharest, 1-6 July 2019

Supporting education and research in Machine Learning in Eastern Europe

The Eastern European Machine Learning (EEML) summer school is an international event initiated in 2018 and organised yearly in an Eastern European country, which aims to bring together some of the most respected names in the field of Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence with students and practitioners from all over the world, in order to provide a high quality training and networking experience.

The 2019 edition is taking place in Bucharest, Romania, between 1st and 6th of July 2019, on the campus of Politehnica University of Bucharest. The first edition of the school was organised in July 2018, in Cluj-Napoca, in collaboration with Romanian Institute for Science and Technology and Babes-Bolyai University, under the name Transylvanian Machine Learning Summer School.

The school’s goal is to encourage cutting-edge research in AI and machine learning in Eastern Europe, and to better connect the AI/ML Eastern European community to the rest of the world. Of equal importance for the school is to encourage diversity in STEM and to make machine learning education more accessible, by promoting diversity in gender and affiliation and by keeping registration fees as low as possible, through sponsorships.

For the 2019 edition, the school has an impressive list of speakers from UC Berkeley, University of Oxford, Higher School of Economics in Moscow, McGill University, Transilvania University Brasov, Leuven University, University of Amsterdam, DeepMind, Google AI, Microsoft Research, and Facebook AI Research.

The school’s program consists of 6 days of intensive training, with lectures, practical sessions, poster presentations by the students, as well as industry and academic keynotes. The topics covered range from deep learning and computer vision to natural language processing and reinforcement learning. In order to foster networking and collaboration and to allow the international participants to discover Bucharest and the Romanian culture, the program also includes a number of social events: reception at Hilton Athenee Palace on Monday July 1st, team building activities on Thursday July 4th, and gala dinner on Friday, July 5th. The full schedule is available online, on the EEML2019 website.

Compared to the 2018 edition, this year’s school aims to engage more with the local AI community and raise awareness among school participants and the general public about the potential of AI to provide solutions to problems of high social importance. To this end, the organisers created a kaggle competition for the school participants, challenging them to employ machine learning for an energy consumption prediction task, and on Thursday July 4th, at 17:30 , there will be an AI for Social Good session open to the general public, at the Bucharest National Theatre. The agenda includes keynotes on machine learning for healthcare and climate, the announcement of the kaggle competition results, as well as a discussion about the development of AI in Romania at a country level. The evening will end with a panel discussion around these topics.

The school will have 210 participants this year: 160 of them were selected through a very competitive process from 738 valid submissions, while 50 are participating on behalf of our sponsors. The participants come from 42 countries, with 54% of the selected participants from Eastern Europe, and 32.3% female participants.

EEML is organised by AI researchers originating in Eastern Europe but now based abroad (Doina Precup, Razvan Pascanu, and Viorica Patraucean), in collaboration with researchers from Eastern Europe. The 2019 edition is organised in collaboration with local researchers and practitioners from Bucharest (Elena Burceanu, Marius Leordeanu, Traian Rebedea) and Iasi (Gabriel Marchidan). Politehnica University of Bucharest and Romanian Association of Artificial Intelligence are the hosts of the school. The organising team relies on an advisory board of experts in ML from Eastern Europe and the rest of the world (https://www.eeml.eu/advisory-board).

In order to provide low participation fees, the school relies on the generosity and support of sponsors and donors: DeepMind and Arnia at Diamond level; Bolt, Siemens, and NNAISENSE at Platinum level; Rakuten, Bosch, FotoNation, CuriousAI, Bitdefender, BRD, Visage Technologies, Intel, UiPath, Ascent Robotics, Cegeka, IST Austria, Everseen, and Sixt at Gold level; Facebook, LummetryAI, Oveit, Adobe, Google, Vivre at Silver level. The organizers are grateful to all the sponsors for their support, as well as for donations from AI Journal and a number of individuals.