Inauguration of the IMMI

Inauguration of the IMMI
Arnold Migus (Directeur General, CNRS), Horst Hippler (Rektor, Karlsruhe Univ.), Jacques Bittoun (Vice-President, Scientific Council, Paris-Sud Univ.), Manfred Nettekoven (Kanzler, RWTH Aachen) are inaugurating the International Joint Research Unit IMMI at the CNRS headquarters in Paris on July 3rd, 2009..|Inauguration of the Institute for Multilingual and Multimedia Information technologies (IMMI)


 

Arnold Migus (Directeur General, CNRS), Horst Hippler (Rektor, Karlsruhe Univ.), Jacques Bittoun (Vice-President, Scientific Council, Paris-Sud Univ.), Manfred Nettekoven (Kanzler, RWTH Aachen) are inaugurating the International Joint Research Unit IMMI at the CNRS headquarters in Paris on July 3rd, 2009.

What is the IMMI?

The LIMSI, a specific laboratory of the CNRS (NATIONAL CENTER FOR SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH) associated with Université Paris-Sud 11 and with Université Pierre et Marie Curie, the Technical University of Rhineland-Westphalia in Aachen ( RWTH) and the University of Karlsruhe ( UKA) made an alliance in order to unit their efforts of research in the field of automatic processing of multilingual and multimedia documents.

This becomes a reality with the creation of a French-German Research Institute for Multilingual and Multimedia Information Technologies, the IMMI, which will be established in a new building of 3000 m2 built in Orsay (near the LIMSI).  An International Joint Research Unit (UMI) was first created on December 1st, 2007 to bring its support in the management of the Institute, followed by the introduction, end of 2008, of the European Associated Laboratories network (LEA) IMMI-Labs, which draws together the research efforts of the three partners as part of an agreement between the CNRS (NATIONAL CENTER FOR SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH), RWTH, the UKA and Université Paris-Sud 11. French-German Research Institute for Multilingual and Multimedia Information Technologies, the IMMI, which will be established in a new building of 3000 m2 built in Orsay (near the LIMSI).

International Joint Research Unit 
was first created on December 1st, 2007 to bring its support in the management of the Institute, followed by the introduction, end of 2008, of the European Associated Laboratories network  network (LEA) IMMI-Labs,, which federates the research efforts of the three partners within the framework of an agreement associating CNRS, RWTH, the UKA and the University of Paris Sud 11 .

The project links up with the strong dynamics rising in the South of Ile-de-France in the field of Information & Communication Sciences and Technologies.. 12 M€ have been co-financed by the CNRS (NATIONAL CENTER FOR SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH), the Conseil Général of Essonne and the Réseau Thématique de Recherche Avancée ( RTRA) Digiteo, within the framework of the 2007-2013 Contrat de Projets Etat-Région, to cover the costs of the construction and the computing equipments..

It is strongly connected to the QUAERO program supported bythe OSEO Agency.. As part of this program, the three partner laboratories and their common unit should benefit from a financial support of approx. 18 M€ on the duration of the program.

The conjunction of these supports and the quality of the researchers who are involved gives the IMMI an exceptional background in terms of human resources (the institute will eventually count around one hundred researchers), financial and material support (both in accommodation facilities and in computing resources) and scientific and technical skill. All this will position the IMMI as a leader in the development of language processing technologies and bring solutions to the problems of multilingualism which constitutes a major issue within the European Union, with its 23 official languages to handle and its 506 language pairs to translate, as well as in the general perspective of the global village. As part of this scientific cooperation, the institute will welcome for sabbatical leaves German or French researchers in an international context. For example, this year, Professor Hermann Ney,machine translation specialist of repute, is coming to France from Germany on a Digiteo Chaire d’Excellence.. The scientific cooperations could extend afterwards to other partners and countries.

The scientific domain handled within this cooperation focuses at first on natural language processing (text analysis, filtering, indexing, automatic summarization,...), machine translation (text-to-text, speech-to-text, or speech-to-speech), speech processing (voice recognition, language identification, speakers’ recognition and indexing (who speaks when?), speech recognition, audio classification, analysis of acoustic scenes, audiovisual speech processing,...), multilingual documents processing (language identification of written and spoken language, document search in different languages, document translation,...) and multimedia document indexing (information extraction, content-based indexing, media follow-up and alert, answer-to-question systems...).

An outcome could be to cover more generally the problem of machine proceeded man-to-machine and man-to-man communication, including Sign language, and to spread the information, which is one of the competences of the LIMSI and RWTH.

The three partner laboratories cover a common scientific area in the field of man-to-machine interfaces, including multilingual processing of written and spoken language, multimodal communication and multimedia document processing. They share the same methodological approach based on the use of automatic learning methods from corpus and from comparative evaluation protocols,which allow them to make the necessary scientific choices in a rational way.

Contact: Joseph Mariani, Director of the IMMI, (Joseph.Mariani (At) limsi.fr) – www.immi-labs.org

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