Posted on March 16, 2016

The Qatar Computing Research Institute (QCRI), a national research institute under Hamad bin Khalifa University, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (MIT CSAIL) will hold their annual research projects review meeting at the Qatar National Convention Centre on Sunday, March 20 and Monday, March 21. The event will be open to the public on Sunday.

In the fourth of a seven-year agreement, the partnership between QCRI and MIT CSAIL continues to gain momentum, with scientists on each side of the collaboration co-leading multidisciplinary core computer science research projects. The partnership, named the Computer Science Research Program, is a medium for knowledge transfer and the exchange of expertise, as well as a platform to engage and train young researchers who are helping to build Qatar’s research capacity.

QCRI and MIT CSAIL scientists 2 [].jpgThe annual research projects meeting will review the partnership’s eight main collaborative computing projects: Video Magnification and Video Comparison for Sports, Content-Adaptive Video Retargeting, Cross-Cloud: Phase 2, Understanding and Identifying Cultural Identities Across Platforms, Data Integration, Speech and Language Processing for Arabic, A Vertically-Integrated Approach to Resource-Efficient Shared Computing, and Understanding Health Habits from Social Media Pictures.

“We are at the midpoint of an incredible scientific collaboration with MIT CSAIL and are excited about what will happen during the partnership’s second half,” said Dr Ahmed K. Elmagarmid, Executive Director, QCRI. “We enjoyed an extremely positive response to last year’s annual projects review meeting and look forward to furthering participants’ understanding of the importance and impact that each of our eight projects is having on Qatar, the wider Arab region, and the world. QCRI and MIT CSAIL scientists have worked in earnest to build robust and impactful projects by tapping into what each does best and leveraging each other’s expertise. This year’s meeting will showcase these efforts.” 

Supplementing the annual research projects meeting will be a public talk titled “Self-Driving Cars Are Coming” by Dr Daniela Rus, director of MIT CSAIL. Scheduled on March 20 at 4pm, the talk will focus on the development of state-of-the-art autonomous cars and the potential to increase the safety and efficiency of our transportation systems. A MacArthur Fellow and member of the National Academy of Engineering, Dr Rus’ research concentrates on robotics, data science and mobile computing. To register for the public talk, please visit

Also on the sidelines of the annual meeting is QCRI’s “Coding is Cool” workshop, taking place on Monday, March 21 at 9am. The workshop is aimed at encouraging secondary school students to explore the field of computer science as a potential career. Last year’s event attracted nearly 100 student participants from eight schools in Qatar. This year, the workshop will focus on teaching basic concepts related to mobile app development using App Inventor, an MIT mobile app development tool.

To attend the event or review the agenda, please register at