The LIRIMA, International Laboratory for Computer Sciences and Applied Mathematics, was founded in November 2009 for a period of 5 years by Inria and seven other institutions in sub-Saharan Africa and Maghreb. During this period, LIRIMA has gathered together researchers of these African partners with researchers from Inria and other French and European institutions in joint projects, based on Inria project-teams model.
12 project-teams, evaluated in the middle and at the end of the period, composed LIRIMA during the period 2010-2014.
Following the positive evaluation conducted in September 2014, LIRIMA partners wished to continue their collaboration by creating a new Laboratory for a period of 4 (four) years, based on the same model as that created in 2009. The partners nevertheless wished to make some modifications to the methods of organization and operation of the Laboratory. The new agreement, signed in 2015, extended it to an Inria International Lab of the same name. LIRIMA Headquarters, based at the University of Yaoundé I during the 2010-2014 period, was hosted at the Gaston Berger University of Saint-Louis in Senegal from 2015 to 2018.
In 2019, LIRIMA was renewed for a new period of 4 years and the headquarters of LIRIMA are now hosted by ENIT (National School of Engineers of Tunis) within LAMSIN (Laboratory of Mathematical and Numerical Modeling in Sciences of the Engineer) on the campus of the University of Tunis El Manar in Tunisia.
LIRIMA mainly aims to:
- contribute to international research in computer science and mathematics
- develop an active and structured partnership between the partners through training and student supervision
- contribute to the economic and social development of Africa
LIRIMA focuses on a few identified teams which each relate to an innovative project. Since 2016, research team proposals have been submitted to Inria’s “Associate Teams” programme after being presented to LIRIMA’s management, who supports them in presenting their project. In this way, new teams can be integrated into LIRIMA each year.
In 2020, there are five (5) on-going Associate Teams. They gather regularly during scientific days to discuss the progress or renewal of research projects. Thematic workshops (eg in Data Sciences, Digital Agriculture, High Performance Computing and Big Data) are also organized and opened to a large African and French community (IRD, CIRAD, INRA, AUF…).
Organization and governance
The International Laboratory is organized and governed by :
- The two Directors – Amel Ben Abda, ENIT – Université El Manar, Tunis, African Director, and Eric Badouel, Inria, French Director
- The Steering Committee
- The Scientific Committee
The following Institutions are currently members of the new agreement:
• University of Stellenbosch, South Africa
• University of Abomey-Calavy, Benin
• University of Yaoundé I, Cameroon
• Masuku University of Sciences and Technologies (USTM), Franceville, Gabon
• Gaston Berger University, Saint-Louis, Senegal
• General Department of Scientific Research and Technological Development (MESRS-DGRSDT), Algeria
• National Center for Scientific and Technical Research (CNRST), Morocco
• Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research (MESRS), Tunisia
The partners commit to contribute to the International Laboratory by providing financial, material and human resources. Each partner allocates and manages the financial resources corresponding to his contribution in accordance with the Agreement.