Michele Ceriotti to represent EPFL in new ELLIS program

Michele Ceriotti's blackboard © Michele Ceriotti

Michele Ceriotti's blackboard © Michele Ceriotti

School of Engineering professor Michele Ceriotti is the EPFL representative in a new European Laboratory for Learning and Intelligent Systems (ELLIS) program dedicated to Machine Learning for Molecule Discovery.

The ELLIS network recently approved the new program on Machine Learning for Molecule Discovery, which will be represented at EPFL by Michele Ceriotti, head of the School of Engineering’s Laboratory of Computational Science and Modelling (COSMO).

The program is supported by NCCR MARVEL and the Centre Européen de Calcul Atomique et Moléculaire (CECAM), and will focus on the use of machine learning to accelerate molecular discovery. New molecules with specific functions or activities can result in new medicines, secure the world’s food supply via agrochemicals, or enable sustainable energy conversion and storage to counter or mitigate climate change.

“Molecular and materials discovery is a field in which artificial intelligence can make, and is already making, a real difference,” Ceriotti said. “The ELLIS network has recognized the importance of this topic, and the need for an interdisciplinary team to back this program.”

Dialogue, impacts, and education

Discovering new molecules or molecular materials optimized for a particular purpose can take a long time, and is highly cost intensive. Machine learning (ML) methods can accelerate molecular discovery, but domain experts and ML researchers need to work together to ensure that ML has an impact in real world scenarios.

The new ELLIS program, which involves 17 scholars and fellows at institutions including EPFL, ETHZ, the University of Cambridge and MIT, will promote this dialogue in several ways. It will demonstrate the impact of ML on chemistry, catalysis, drug discovery, energy conversion, and molecular modeling, and on the advancement of fields such as molecular representation learning and molecular property prediction.

The program will also facilitate training and education of the next generation of scientists working at the intersection of chemistry and ML through study programs and workshops.

About the ELLIS network

ELLIS, founded in 2018, is a pan-European AI network of excellence that focuses on fundamental science, technical innovation and societal impact. The network builds on machine learning as the driver for modern AI and aims to secure Europe’s competences and independence in the field through the ELLIS PhD & Postdoc Program; ELLIS Units, including one at EPFL; and to the ELLIS programs.

The programs, directed by outstanding European researchers and including leading researchers as Program Fellows, focus on high-impact problem areas. There are currently 14 ELLIS programs covering topics ranging from Health to Theory, Algorithms and Computations of Modern Learning Systems.

Authors: Carey Sargent, Celia Luterbacher

Source: School of Engineering | STI

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