AWS to open innovation centre at UBC
July 24, 2019
VANCOUVER – Amazon announced that that its Amazon Web Services, Inc. (AWS) subsidiary will launch a Cloud Innovation Centre (CIC) at the University of British Columbia in early 2020. The UBC centre will focus on community health and wellbeing.
UBC associate provost Simon Bates (pictured) said specific projects are still being developed, but the plan is to “hit the ground running” when the centre opens in January. “We’re looking at it, if you like, as part of a digital transformation agenda at UBC,” he told Business in Vancouver.
“We’re looking to help our students develop not just the deep academic and disciplinary skills that they get from studying with us, but also the sorts of skills they’ll need to go to varied roles in the workplace.”
The new CIC – pronounced “kick” – will be operated by three Amazon workers and three UBC staff members. Bates said students will obtain easy access to the full suite of AWS cloud tools.
The CIC, meanwhile, will also have access to Amazon’s network of expertise as well as experts based at other CICs around the world.
The CIC in Canada joins seven other cloud computing research initiatives funded by AWS worldwide, including California Polytechnic University Digital Transformation Hub, Arizona State University Smart City CIC, Munich University of Applied Sciences (MUAS) Digital Transformation Lab, CODE University of Applied Sciences Better Future Lab in Berlin, Sciences Po Public Innovation Lab in Paris, Busan City CIC, and the recently launched Swinburne Data for Social Good CIC in Sydney, Australia.
“We’re seeing cloud adoption across every segment in Canada, from non-profits to education and all levels of government,” AWS vice-president Teresa Carlson said in a statement.
“The CIC at UBC further accelerates the digital transformation of the Canadian public sector by providing teams with access to next-generation cloud technology from AWS that can be used to solve real-world challenges. Our expertise and experience with machine learning, high-performance computing, and data analytics will directly help the UBC community in delivering innovative projects.”
The official name of the new centre is UBC Community Health and Wellbeing CIC, powered by AWS.