ARA program provides unrestricted funds and AWS Promotional Credits to academics investigating research topics across a number of disciplines.

Professor Jan Faigl, Head of the Computational Robotics Laboratory in AIC, received the 2020 Amazon Research Award. This year’s 101 laureates (twice as many as last year) represent 59 universities in 13 countries. They come from some of the most prestigious universities in the world including MIT, ETH Zurich, Stanford, Princeton, Carnegie Mellon University, Yale and more. We are proud that Jan Faigl is one of the only two Czech scientists who made the list (the second being Jiří Matas, also from the Faculty of Electrical Engineering CTU).

Jan Faigl succeeded with his research proposal “Communication maps building in subterranean environments” under the Robotics section. And it wasn’t an easy fight! All proposals were carefully reviewed for the quality of their scientific content, their creativity, and their potential to impact both the research community, and society more generally. Theoretical advances, creative new ideas, and practical applications were all considered.

Amazon Research Awards (ARA) was founded in 2015 and offers unrestricted funds and AWS Promotional Credits to support research at academic institutions and non-profit organizations in areas that align with Amazon's mission to advance customer-obsessed science.

The Amazon Research Award program offers unrestricted funds up to 80 000 USD in grants and 20 000 USD in Amazon Web Services Promotional Credits. The grants are intended to support the work of one to two graduate or postdoctoral students for one year, under the supervision of a faculty member. Recipients also have access to more than 200 Amazon public datasets, and can utilize AWS AI/ML services and tools through their AWS Promotional Credits. On top of that, recipients are assigned an Amazon research contact who offers consultation and advice along with opportunities to participate in Amazon events and training sessions. Additionally, Amazon encourages the publication of research results, presentations of research at Amazon offices worldwide, and the release of related code under open-source licenses.

Grant recipients pursue cutting-edge research that will benefit society and help students from across the globe pursue career in science and engineering.

This year's recipients represent a distinguished array of academics  across diverse areas such as ML algorithms and theory, fairness in AI, computer vision, natural language processing, edge computing, and medical research. Jan Faigl's proposal was submited to the Robotics CFP.

"As we enter into this golden age of robotics, we do so with our university partners. Not only are they shaping what is possible in robotics, they are inspiring many next- generation roboticists with their incredible creations and front-line teachings," said Tye Brady, Chief Technologist for Amazon Robotics. "Our grant recipients are not only pursuing cutting-edge research that will benefit society, but perhaps more importantly are helping students from across the globe pursue career in science and engineering." We are overwhelmed to have this opportunity thanks to the amazing work of our dear colleague.