What is CRI?

CRI is co-constructing and sharing new ways of learning, teaching, conducting research and mobilizing collective intelligence in the fields of life, learning and digital sciences, in order to address the UN's sustainable development goals (SDGs).

CRI operates around 4 main areas :

  • Developing and hosting educational programs, from preschool to high school (Savanturiers - École de la Recherche), interdisciplinary Bachelor, Master, and PhD (EURIP Graduate School) as well as lifelong learning degree programs of the Université de Paris.
  • Conducting research within its INSERM-Université de Paris research Collaboratory Unit, advised and guided by a Scientific Advisory Board, composed of prestigious international scientific leaders.
  • Developing the #LearningPlanet initiative in partnership with UNESCO, of which it also holds a Chair, and AFD to inspire and empower learners of all ages who wish to identify, develop and amplify the most effective ways to learn how to solve problems together.
  • Building a living campus where innovative makers can set up digital infrastructures for learning communities to help them to resolve global challenges.

CRI was founded in 2006 by François Taddei and Ariel Lindner with the Bettencourt Schueller Foundation as an essential and key supporting partner and Paris City Hall. It also benefits from the support of a wide range of foundations, corporate sponsors and institutions including the University of Paris, with which CRI co-founded the interdisciplinary action-based research challenge institute (“Institut des Défis”) to prototype a model of a Learning University enable of responding to the global challenges of our time.

  • 350 students each year, 1300 students since CRI's creation
  • +40 research fellows
  • +30 000 pupils involved in Savanturiers program since Savanturiers' creation in 2013
  • +100 talks by international scientific leaders
  • +100 000 subscriptions to CRI’s MOOCs since 2014
  • +50 nationalities
Save the date
Monday, January 11, 2021
9:00 AM
Home SDG Digital School in Kigali

Due to the global pandemic, Home Association (a CRI Club and NGO) proposes to host the second edition of our Home SDG digital school as a combination of both virtual and physical meets. The scope of the program will cover many academic grounds that will train students in both soft- and hard-skills in and for digital solutions. During the course of thirteen weeks, students will have the opportunity to learn by doing. Home volunteers (CRI students, CRI alumni staff & students) will be in Kigali, Rwanda for two weeks in January 2021 for the prototyping session.

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Monday, January 18, 2021
11:30 AM
CRI Research Seminar: Olaf Witkowski

A New University: Researching the Nature of Intelligence between Academia and the Industry.

From cells, to brains, to animal societies, and artificial general intelligence (AGI), cognition can be understood in terms of self-maintaining information flows through time and space. Information's substrate-independence and interoperability made it possible for symbolic representations such as the genetic code to parasite the laws of physics. These patterns progressively became more complex, going through major transitions which gave rise to large varieties of self-correcting patterns. The key to understanding the emergence and dynamics of these transitions can be found in the way spatiotemporal entities process and exchange information between each other, that is, the causal structure of their sensorimotor loops and information trading patterns.

Replicating these effects of intelligent and living systems artificially with computer simulations – either recent von Neumann architectures or more unconventional computing over exotic substrates – enables us to factor out the fundamental principles of life in the universe, and represent formally the nature of concepts such as cognition, autonomy, complexity, cooperation and integration. This talk will introduce how the work at Cross Labs innovates in terms of approach and institutional methodology, to identify the fundamental laws that give rise to collective intelligence in the universe.

Dr. Olaf Witkowski is the director of research at Cross Labs, where he leads innovative research in artificial life, machine learning, cognitive science, collective intelligence, and evolutionary computation. He received his PhD in computer science from the University of Tokyo, and is currently a member of the board of directors of the International Society for Artificial Life. He is also a research scientist at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, a lecturer at the University of Tokyo, a regular visitor at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, and a co-founder of YHouse, an institute for the study of the emergence of consciousness in the universe, in New York.

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Tuesday, January 19, 2021
6:00 PM
Conférence intéractive : "Quelles innovations dans un monde contraint en ressources" ? - Philippe Bihouix

Dans le cadre des cours et ateliers proposés aux étudiants qui participent au semestre "Life sciences for SDGs", nous accueillerons mardi 19 Janvier de 18h à 19h30 Philippe Bihouix, spécialiste de l’épuisement des ressources minérales et promoteur des low-tech. Cette invitation a été réalisée en partenariat avec LUMIÅ, un établissement d’enseignement supérieur agissant de pair avec un centre de recherche-action dans le sud de la France. Cette conférence aura comme thématique "Quelles innovations dans un monde contraint en ressources".

Le format de la conférence est particulier, nous avons demandé aux participants de nos deux programmes de visionner au préalable des interventions déjà effectuées par Philippe Bihouix et de lui soumettre un certain nombre de questions à lui poser en direct le jour de la conférence. Ainsi, cet entretien débutera par une brève présentation de sa vision de l'innovation technologique puis les participants pourront poser leurs questions directement. Si vous souhaitez y assister, la conférence se déroulera en ligne et sera retransmise en direct sur youtube.

Lien youtube :

Nous vous invitons à regarder les différentes vidéos de Philippe Bihouix disponibles afin de mieux appréhender son discours




Une fois les questions de nos deux promotions terminées, nous prendrons le temps de poser les questions du chat.

La conférence sera en Français.

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Thursday, January 21, 2021
2:00 PM
IAAI : Interdisciplinary Applications of Artificial Intelligence

Joins us for the public presentation of projects on Artifical Intelligence by Digital Sciences students.

After 12 weeks of intensive dedicated training in machine learning

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Thursday, January 21, 2021
5:00 PM
Network seminar "Quantifying Stability in Deterministic and Stochastic Complex Networks and its Application to Power Grids"

We are happy to invite you to this network seminar on the topic of "Quantifying Stability in Deterministic and Stochastic Complex Networks and its Application to Power Grids" by Juergen Kurths. from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research and Humboldt University Berlin, Institute of Physics, Germany

Abstract: Power grids, the human brain, arrays of coupled lasers, genetic networks, or the Amazon rainforest are all characterized by multistability. The likelihood that these systems will remain in the most desirable of their many stable states depends on their stability against significant perturbations, particularly in a state space populated by undesirable states. Here we claim that the traditional linearization-based approach to stability is in several cases too local to adequately assess how stable a state is. Instead, we quantify it in terms of basin stability, a new measure related to the volume of the basin of attraction. Basin stability is non-local, nonlinear and easily applicable, even to high-dimensional systems. It provides a long-sought-after explanation for the surprisingly regular topologies of neural networks and power grids, which have eluded theoretical description based solely on linear stability. Remarkably, when taking physical losses in the network into account, the back-reaction of the network induces new exotic solitary states in the individual actors, and the stability characteristics of the synchronous state are dramatically altered. These novel effects will have to be explicitly taken into account in the design of future power grids, and their existence poses a challenge for control.

Bio Jürgen Kurths studied mathematics at the University of Rostock. He received the from the GDR Academy of Sciences, in 1983. He was a Full Professor with the University of Potsdam, from 1994 to 2008. He has been a Professor of nonlinear dynamics at the Humboldt University, Berlin, and the Chair of the Research Domain Complexity Science of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, since 2008. He has published more than 600 articles that are cited more than 48,000 times (H-factor: 99). His primary research interests include synchronization, complex networks, and time series analysis and their applications in Earth Sciences, Physiology, infrastructure and others. He is a Fellow of the American Physical Society. He became a member of the Academia Europaea, in 2010. He received the Alexander von Humboldt Research Award from CSIR, India, in 2005, and the Richardson award from the European Geoscience Union in 2013. He got eight Honory Doctorates and Honorary Professors. He is Editor-in-chief of the Journal of Nonlinear Science, and Chaos and editor of about 10 further journals, such as Europ. Physics Lett.


P. Menck, J. Heitzig, N. Marwan, and J. Kurths, Nature Physics 9, 89 (2013) P. Menck, J. Heitzig, J. Kurths, and H. Schellnhuber, Nature Communication 5, 3969 (2014) Y. Zou, T. Pereira, M. Small, Z. Liu, and J. Kurths, Phys. Rev. Lett. 112, 114102 (2014) F. Hellmann, P. Schultz, C. Grabow, J. Heitzig, and J. Kurths, Scient. Rep. 6, 29654 (2016) Y. Xu, Y. Li, H. Zhang, X. Li, and J. Kurths, Scient. Rep. 6, 31505 (2016) J. Nitzbon, P. Schultz, J. Heitzig, J. Kurths, and F. Hellmann, New J. Phys. 19, 033028 (2017) F. Hellmann, P. Schultz, P. Jaros, R. Levchenko, T. Kapitaniak, J. Kurths, and Y. Maistrenko, Nature Communications 11, 592 (2020)

Past network seminars:

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Thursday, January 21, 2021
6:00 PM
[Premiers Cris] Épisode 2 : MOOC 'LA PETITE CULTURE NUMÉRIQUE : le développement du tout-petit à l'ère numérique'
La diffusion du deuxième épisode du MOOC 'La petite culture numérique : le développement du tout-petit à l'ère numérique' sera suivi d'un débat avec l'équipe pédagogique.

Synopsis Dans une démarche interdisciplinaire, ce MOOC réunit de nombreux acteurs et actrices de la petite enfance (chercheur•e•s, professionnelles de petite enfance, designers et entrepreneur•e·s, acteurs et actrices politiques, etc). En cinq épisodes, ce MOOC questionne la relation du jeune enfant aux outils numériques et encourage l’éveil de l’esprit critique, autour d’un sujet encore en pleine exploration.

Bande-annonce :

Épisode 2. Un développement logique Afin de répondre aux questions liées à l’impact du numérique sur le développement du jeune enfant, il convient de revenir sur les fondamentaux du développement. Dans ce deuxième épisode, nous vous proposons d’explorer quatre éléments essentiels au développement du tout-petit sur lequel l’utilisation d’outils numériques pourrait avoir une influence : le jeu, la relation parents-enfants, l’acquisition du langage et enfin le développement sensorimoteur. En mêlant connaissances de terrain, approches cliniques et recherches scientifiques, cet épisode propose une vision de l’approche développementale du jeune enfant. Nous conclurons cet épisode par une présentation des conséquences sur la santé du jeune enfant d’une exposition aux outils numériques.


Lisa Jacquey, Co-fondatrice de Premiers Cris Éloïse André, Ingénieure pédagogique, Premiers Cris

Inscription gratuite mais obligatoire.

L'événement sera retransmis en ligne et en direct

Lien prochainement disponible

Pour en savoir plus sur le MOOC 'La petite culture numérique : le développement du tout-petit à l'ère numérique'

Pour toute question vous pouvez nous contacter

Contactez l’équipe Premiers Cris par email à []().

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Friday, January 22, 2021
9:00 AM
Tech Camp - DIY with Electronics

Workshop with M2 Digital Sciences students who will help you to explore the basics of electronics.

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Friday, January 22, 2021
11:00 AM
AIRE Masterclass presents: Ricard Solé

The AIRE-LiSc Master is excited to host Ricard Solé, Research Professor at the Catalan Institute for research and Advanced Studies (ICREA) and head of the Complex Systems Lab located at the PRBB, for its first 2021 Masterclass!

Prof. Solé is interested in "understanding the possible presence of universal patterns of organization in complex systems, from prebiotic replicators, cancer, multicellularity, viruses, protocells or language to evolved artificial objects." His research is an exquisite blend of experimental and theoretical work and spans many fields.

The Masterclass will be held online and registration for non-LiSc students is mandatory. A zoom link to join will be sent on Friday morning before the event to all registered participants. Limited spots available!

Title: Synthetic transitions: the roads not taken


Evolution is marked by well-defined events involving profound innovations that are known as ‘major evolutionary transitions’. They involve the integration of autonomous elements into a new, higher-level organization whereby the former isolated units interact in novel ways, losing their original autonomy. All major transitions, which include the origin of life, cells, multicellular systems, societies or language (among other examples), took place millions of years ago. Are these transitions unique, rare events? Have they instead universal traits that make them almost inevitable when the right pieces are in place? Are there general laws of evolutionary innovation? In order to approach this problem under a novel perspective, we argue that a parallel class of evolutionary transitions can be explored involving the use of artificial evolutionary experiments where alternative paths to innovation can be explored. These ‘synthetic’ transitions include, for example, the creation of a living cell, the artificial evolution of multicellular systems or the emergence of language in evolved communicating robots. Moreover, we can also consider the creation of synthetic ecosystems and how to use them to engineer our biosphere. These alternative scenarios could help us to understand the underlying laws that predate the rise of major innovations and the possibility for general laws of evolved complexity.

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Sunday, January 24, 2021
9:00 AM
Learning Planet Festival

We invite you to celebrate meaningful and transformative learning with us and participate in the second edition of the #LearningPlanet Festival which will take place online on 24th and 25th January 2021, on the occasion of the International Day of Education. Save the dates!


Initiated by CRI and UNESCO in 2020, the Festival is co-designed and co-organised with the #LearningPlanet open community, bringing together organisations and networks from around the world, such as, to name but a few, Agence Universitaire de la Francophonie (AUF), Ashoka, Climate-KIC, Community Arts Network (CAN), Global Education Leaders Partnership (GELP), Global Minnesota, Reboot the Future, UNESCO Global Network of Learning Cities, The Weaving Lab, and World’s Largest Lesson (learn more).

The #LearningPlanet Festival invites exemplary learning communities and youth movements across the world, as well as committed educators and learners, to share and celebrate their most significant learnings and achievements, structured around this year’s theme: ‘Learning to take care of oneself, others, and the planet’.

The Festival’s online grassroots programme will offer a range of sessions adapted to all ages over 2 days: inspiring video talks, LIVE conferences and debates, educational and creative workshops, scientific and artistic activities, digital experiments, films and documentaries, etc.

Register here and now on our event platform, which will also guide you through all the Festival’s sessions and events.

For all information, please visit: and follow #LearningPlanet on social media: @learningplanet_ on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Linkedin. You can also access the Festival’s Communication kit and help us spread the word and the celebration to your own networks!

We look forward to enjoying these unique learning experiences with you, Team #LearningPlanet

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Monday, January 25, 2021
11:30 AM
CRI Research Seminar: Pauline Provini

Birdsong for human(e) voices We share remarkable similarities with birds. Among them, bipedalism and complex language are two traits often seen as human specificities, yet also present in birds. In my long-term fellow project, I want to focus on birdsong to build a new generation of vocal prostheses. Patients suffering from an advanced stage of laryngeal cancer often have to undergo a total surgical removal of the larynx, which is the human voice source. To recover the ability to speak, a prosthesis, mimicking the vocal folds, is usually placed between the trachea and the oesophagus. The exhaled air crosses a vibrating element and produces a substitute voice. Unfortunately, the created voice is of poor quality: it is weak, with a low pitch and sounds mechanical. In addition, the limited lifetime of the devices, due to biofilm coming from mucus/material interactions, forces a frequent device replacement. To date, there is no voice prosthesis lasting more than 3 months and able to reconstruct a natural-sounding human voice. In this context, birds should attract attention. First, their vocal repertoire is incredibly diverse, with pitches spanning from 100 to 12 000 Hz, compared to only 85 to 255 Hz in human speech. Moreover, their unique vocal organ, the syrinx, produces sounds from the vibration of membranes, located in the wall of the syrinx, unlike in mammals. Finally, birds modulate the primary sound with motions of the entire vocal tract, which is probably linked to the diversity of sounds they are able to produce. By exploring the anatomy of the vocal system in a broad range of birds species, and quantifying the 3D motions of the vocal system during sound production and modulation, we want to build a predictive aero-acoustic model we can use to ask “what if” questions and understand cause-effect relationships between shape, motions, and produced sounds. I will present the interdisciplinary approach we use in the CRI Birdsong team, integrating biology, physics, and computer science to provide the fundamental principles to the design of a new generation of vocal prostheses that will produce voices that sound more humane.

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Sunday, January 31, 2021
10:00 AM
Ateliers Sciences Marines by Astrolabe Expeditions

Atelier de construction de kit de mesure océanographique qui partiront sur des voiliers de plaisance pour des expéditions scientifiques en mer.

CRI Project : Phd Project :

Astrolabe Expeditions

Projet SensOcean :

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Monday, February 8, 2021
11:30 AM
CRI Research Seminar: Marc Santolini

The networks underlying collaborative learning and solving

In this talk, we will present recent advances from our team at the Interaction Data Lab, where we use network science and data analysis to decipher collective phenomena at biological and social scales. In particular, we will showcase projects where we analyse collaborative learning and solving using network approaches on large empirical datasets, with the end goal to develop tools fostering collective intelligence for social impact.

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Friday, February 19, 2021
9:00 AM
Tech Camp: Introduction to Deep Learning

Digital Science students will introduce the topic of Deep Learning to the general public as part of their engagement on development of skills on Trending topics.

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Monday, February 22, 2021
9:00 AM
Thematic Workshops - FIRE & AIRE - Doctoral school and Master students interdisciplinary week

Around 100 CRI students from from FIRE Doctoral School and Master AIRE(Life Sciences, Learning Sciences and Digital Sciences) join forces to prepare a week of interdisciplinary workshops.

They will share with the public the topics of their internships and research projects.

Join them on this interdisciplinary week full of activities!

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Monday, February 22, 2021
11:30 AM
CRI Research Seminar: Jake Wintermute

Distributed Approaches to Teaching and Doing Synthetic Biology

Emerging applications of synthetic biology promise major changes in medicine, food, ecology and other domains. Even as the impacts of genetic technologies become more diverse and widespread, the institutions that develop them remain homogenous and centralized. The result is substantial public opposition to many new biotechnologies.

What if we, the scientific experts, are doing everything wrong? This talk will be a conversation about strategies for including more people in the process of doing research and in setting research priorities. Who should be doing synthetic biology and what are their motivations for doing so? How can we balance expert knowledge with public values? What would a popular version of biotechnology look like and what would it take to transition from our current practices?

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Monday, March 8, 2021
11:30 AM
CRI Research Seminar: Roberto Toro


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