Professor Lajoie’s Canada Research Chair will primarily support collaborative projects with both academic and industry partners aimed at the optimization of neurostimulation for clinical application.
Mila and Université de Montréal (UdeM) Assistant Professor Guillaume Lajoie was named a Tier 2 Canada Research Chair (CRC) in Neural Computation and Interfacing, in recognition of the significance of his work at the intersection of artificial intelligence and neuroscience.
“I am extremely honoured to be named CRC. It will enable specific projects aimed at developing tools and theory to improve, optimize, and better understand interfacing protocols between neural implants and the nervous system,” said Lajoie. “The CRC will support therapeutic applications of neural interfacing and allow unique ways to probe and understand learning and computation in the brain, which can help develop better and more robust AI.”
Optimizing neurostimulation for clinical applications could help speed up the recovery of damaged neural circuits after injuries or stroke and promote neuromodulation to treat chronic diseases.
His impactful work was also recognized last October when he received the prestigious Simons Collaboration on the Global Brain (SCGB) Pilot Award from the Simons Foundation for his project ‘Using brain-machine interfaces to identify and manipulate computational principles of learning,’ which aims to uncover computational principles of learning motor behaviours. “This CRC will synergize with other support such as that of CIFAR and the Simons Foundation Collaboration on the Global Brain, allowing ambitious projects such as probing and leveraging learning dynamics in the brain when interacting with brain-computer interfaces,” added Lajoie.
Lajoie teaches in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics at UdeM, holds a Canada CIFAR AI Chair and is a Fonds de Recherche du Québec – Santé (FRQS) Research Scholar. He is the Neural Networks research axe leader and a member of the ‘Ethics of Neuro-AI’ task force at UNIQUE (Unifying Neuroscience and Artificial Intelligence – Québec), as well as a researcher in the Centre de Recherches Mathématiques of UdeM.
The Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science, and Industry announced on January 12 a major investment of over $550 million in support of more than 5,500 researchers across Canada as part of the government’s ongoing effort to bolster the country’s science and research sector. A total of $151 million will be allocated to 188 new and renewed chairs and their research teams, including new CRC Lajoie.
Three additional Canada Research Chair holders at Mila
- Catherine Régis, Associate Academic Member and Full Professor in UdeM’s Law Faculty: Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Collaborative Culture in Health Law and Policy
- David Buckeridge, Associate Academic Member and Associate Professor in the School of Population and Global Health at McGill University: Tier 1 Canada Research Chair in Population Health Informatics
- Julien Cohen-Adad, Associate Academic Member and Associate Professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering at Polytechnique Montréal: Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Quantitative Magnetic Resonance Imaging