As part of the World AI Cannes Festival, Jeanick Brisswalter, President of the Université Côte d’Azur, will award the “Honorary Doctorate” to Yann LeCun, Vice President and Chief AI Scientist at Meta and Professor at New York University, on Saturday, April 16, 2022, at the Antipolis Convention Center in Antibes – Juan les Pins, in the presence of Jean Leonetti, Mayor of Antibes Juan-les-Pins and President of the Sophia Antipolis agglomeration community. This title is one of the most prestigious distinctions awarded by French universities.
The Doctor Honoris Causa is awarded by universities to honor “personalities of foreign nationality for outstanding services rendered to the sciences, letters or arts, to France or to the university. The 1st “Honorary Doctor” degree from Université Côte d’Azur was awarded in 2018 to Alessio Figalli, Fields Medal 2018, who began his career at the JA Dieudonné mathematics laboratory of Université Côte d’Azur. In November 2021, choreographer Lucinda Chlids received the second degree. In 2022, Université Côte d’Azur will award other Honorary Doctorate degrees to prestigious international figures.
A graduate of ESIEE Paris, Yann LeCun holds a DEA and a PhD from the Pierre-et-Marie-Curie University. He focused his research on machine learning and during his thesis proposed a variant of the gradient backpropagation algorithm, which has been used since the early 1980s to learn neural networks. He did his post-doctoral work in Geoffrey Hinton’s team.
Yann LeCun has focused his research on machine learning and deep learning. In 1987, he joined the University of Toronto and then, one year later, AT & T laboratories, for which he developed supervised learning methods.
As a professor at New York University, he created the Center for Data Sciences and works on the technological development of autonomous cars. In December 2013, he joined Facebook to launch and direct the Facebook Artificial Intelligence Research (FAIR) in New York, Menlo Park and then, from 2015 in Paris where he focuses his research on image and video recognition.
In 2016, he became the holder for the year of the chair “Computer Science and Digital Science” at the Collège de France. In January 2017, he was replaced in his position at FAIR by Jérôme Pesenti and became Chief Scientist.
He won the Turing Award from the Association for Computing Machinery, the largest international grouping of computer science faculty and scientists, alongside Yoshua Bengio and Geoffrey Hinton in March 2019. The award is considered the Nobel Prize of computer science.
The graduation ceremony will take place on Saturday, April 16, at 3:00 pm at the Antipolis Convention Center in Antibes Juan-Les-Pins. Admission will be free and live on Facebook.