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Amazon to invest $1.5 million as part of AI collaboration with Germany’s Max Planck Society 

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Amazon is partnering with a German research institute called the Max Planck Society on a far-reaching “strategic collaboration” across the artificial intelligence (AI) realm.

Amazon has said that it will build a research center next to the Max Planck Institute for Intelligence Systems in Tübingen, a university town near Stuttgart in the southwest of Germany, as part of the region’s Cyber Valley initiative. Cyber Valley was set up last December with the goal of bringing major science and technology groups from around the world together to collaborate on AI, robotics, machine learning, and computer vision projects.

“With Amazon joining the Cyber Valley, our idea to create a fertile environment for business activities will gain momentum by expanding AI research in the Stuttgart-Tübingen area,” noted Max Planck president Martin Stratmann. “Only by bringing together world-class research and entrepreneurial spirit can we create the breeding ground for innovations that may prove to be technological breakthroughs in the future.”

As part of the partnership, Amazon has announced that it will invest €1.25 million ($1.5 million) in awards for various research groups in Cyber Valley. Amazon also hopes to create roles for 100 employees at its new research center over the next five years.

The new site will actually be Amazon’s fourth research center in Germany, and this latest news comes hot on the heels of a number of European AI-related investment initiatives by the tech giant. Back in May, Amazon announced plans for a new machine learning development hub in the U.K., while last month the company revealed it would open a new machine learning R&D hub in Barcelona.

“With our Amazon Research center in Tübingen, we will become part of one of the largest research initiatives in Europe in the area of artificial intelligence,” added Ralf Herbrich, director of Amazon machine learning and managing director of the Amazon Development Center Germany.

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