Seminar | Artificial Intelligence Policy and Funding in Canada



The McConnell Foundation and the Centre for Interdisciplinary Research on Montreal are inviting you to discover the latest research from the 2019-2021 McConnell Professor of Practice at CIRM, Ana Brandusescu. The report Artificial intelligence policy and funding in Canada: Public investments, private interests examines the artificial intelligence (AI) ecosystem in Canada, AI policy and funding, as well as AI in Quebec and Montreal. “Because so much of AI resides in the private realm, it is worth questioning how the innovation economy is influenced by private interests and private power — and by extension, how AI public policy gets written”, states Ana Brandusescu.

Main findings of the report:

  1. Public investments in AI technologies primarily benefit the private sector, where government funding for AI goes mainly to industry and academia adjacent to industry.
  2. Even though Canada has a federal AI policy, there is no government AI strategy.
  3. Companies linked to human rights abuses can pre-qualify as government AI suppliers.
  4. Concentrations of power provide advantages to a handful of entities with financial resources, data, and technologies across a few universities and affiliated research nonprofits, startups, and international (big) tech companies.

Accompanied by civil society experts on tech policy, public procurement, and open government, Ana Brandusescu will discuss (policy) ideas and recommendations of what public accountability can look like when funding and procuring AI technologies. In short, how can we foster civil society networks for public accountability in AI?


  • Bianca Wylie - Open Government Advocate; Co-founder Tech Reset Canada


  • Yuan Stevens - Policy Lead on Technology, Cybersecurity & Democracy, Ryerson Leadership Lab
  • Nabeel Ahmed - Senior Program Officer, Open North
  • Jess Reia - BMO Postdoctoral Fellow, CIRM; Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Researcher, Department of Art History and Communication Studies, McGill University
  • Valentine Goddard - Executive Director, AI Impact Alliance


Where: Espace Montréal via Zoom

When: March 18, from 12:30 to 2:00 p.m.

The event will be held in English, and registration is required to access the login link.



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