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New agreement signed to establish Canada-Germany quantum computing and machine learning networks

18 July 2018

Canadian and German research and private sector organizations sign MOU to establish corresponding networks to facilitate national and international collaboration in the use of quantum computing and machine learning tools

Quantum computing and data science represent some of the most exciting frontiers in science and technology today. In recent years, the amount of data produced across the globe has increased exponentially at research facilities and private businesses alike. This has given rise to new interdisciplinary methods and tools to accelerate discovery and innovation, transforming the way research is conducted and creating new business opportunities. These fast-changes are spurring international collaboration to push the frontiers and applications in large-scale computing, big data, machine learning, and quantum computing, including a new agreement between Canadian and German organizations.

Germany’s Helmholtz Association centers DESY and Forschungszentrum Jülich, and Canada’s TRIUMF, TRIUMF Innovations, D-Wave Systems Inc., and 1QBit have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to jointly establish corresponding Canadian and German quantum computing and machine learning networks and to collaborate on applied quantum computing and machine learning initiatives of mutual interest. The corresponding networks aim to facilitate national and international collaboration in the use of quantum computing and machine learning tools to enhance research and will be open to additional partners as they are developed. The networks include four joint working groups to focus on four pillars of data science: Quantum Computing, Large Scale Computing, Machine Learning, and Big Data Analytics.

Network partners will bring resources and expertise to the collaboration as they jointly tackle their shared goal and will work together to advance relevant initiatives of mutual interest. Another key objective of the network involves training the next generation of scientists, and the partners will work towards developing frameworks and funding opportunities to address this.

The MOU signing is an outcome of the Data Science and Quantum Computing Workshop hosted in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada from June 27-29 2018. The Vancouver workshop provided a unique forum that brought together researchers, private companies, users, system providers, hardware and software experts, and government partners in an intimate setting to identify and solve data science and quantum computing problems together. During the workshop, the research and private sector organizations signing the MOU quickly recognized they shared a long-term goal of translating data science research into applications for discovery and innovation and could accelerate their interdisciplinary work through collaboration.


“It’s my pleasure to express support for the collaboration between Canadian institutions and German partners in an area of mutual significance for both parties, especially in the very exciting and highly attractive field of data science and quantum computing. These are fields of high importance for both countries, advancing science and innovation opportunities.” – Rudolf Mey, Acting German Consul General in Vancouver

“This memorandum of understanding will advance German and Canadian excellence in the emerging fields of quantum computing and machine learning, with B.C. companies collaborating and benefitting from this partnership. Our province is a proud supporter of TRIUMF’s ground-breaking research, which is helping put B.C. innovation on the world stage.” – Bruce Ralston, British Columbia Minister of Jobs, Trade and Technology 

“At Helmholtz, we conduct research to tackle some grand challenges of our time. The digital transformation is one of the most urgent ones we face. We only can understand and master it effectively through interdisciplinary cooperation both at the national and international levels. I am very pleased that as an outcome of our workshop in Vancouver in June we have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to collaborate in quantum computing and machine learning with leading international partners. Both the German and the Canadian side can exploit this exciting new joint endeavor with their excellent expertise in these research fields.” – Prof. Dr. Otmar D. Wiestler, President of the Helmholtz Association

“Combining the capabilities of cutting-edge research institutions and high-tech companies is a compelling way to investigate and develop smart solutions in the fields of big data and quantum computing in addition to new applications. We are united in many common interests and approaches, and I see a huge potential for innovation.” – Dr. Joachim Mnich, DESY Director in charge of Particle and Astroparticle Physics

“In the fields of quantum computing and machine learning, remarkable progress has been made in recent years. The collaboration of leading international institutions and companies in the fields of research and industry creates great opportunities to exploit the extraordinary potential of these new, game-changing-technologies for scientific, data-intensive tasks.” – Prof. Dr. Sebastian M. Schmidt, Member of the Board of Directors, Forschungszentrum Jülich

“In science and society, we know that data science and machine learning can be powerful tools to solve problems, and we’re still in the early stages of their applications. This international agreement brings together a mighty contingent of research and private sector partners from Canada and Germany to leverage these tools and further develop applications. I’m excited for the new opportunities this will unleash for research, industry, and government, all while training the next generation of scientists and entrepreneurs in data science and quantum computing.” – Dr. Jens Dilling, TRIUMF Associate Laboratory Director – Physical Sciences

“Quantum computing and machine learning are opening up incredible opportunities for both research and business. It’s only fitting to see multidisciplinary partners in industry, academia, and government come together to advance the use of the newest quantum computing and machine learning tools and resources, and accelerate innovation impacting many sectors.” – Kathryn Hayashi, CEO, TRIUMF Innovations

 “We are very excited to participate in on-going collaborations with these outstanding international research and industry partners to apply quantum computing and machine learning to real world problems. Our technology in both areas is rapidly advancing and will benefit the research and innovation agendas of the partners in this MOU.” – Warren Wall, Executive Vice-President Corporate Affairs, D-Wave Systems Inc.

 “For fields that are as revolutionary and disruptive as quantum computing and machine learning, collaboration is the way to ensure that the enormous potential we see is transformed into the best real-world applications. Not only will Canada and Germany reap the rewards of this agreement, the whole world benefits when experts in science and technology work together and share knowledge. Interdisciplinary collaboration is already a key component of 1QBit’s work, and we look forward to extending this to the researchers, businesses, and other experts that are a part of these networks.” – Andrew Fursman, CEO, 1Qbit