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< Contents ERCIM News No. 58, July 2004
  Gilles Kahn; © INRIA / Photo F. JanninINRIA - Gilles Kahn was appointed Chairman of INRIA's Board of Directors by decree of the President of the French Republic dated May 26, 2004. According to INRIA's statutes, the Chairman of the Board of Directors also assumes the function of Chief and Executive Officer of the Institute.

Gilles Kahn, 58, is a member of the Academy of Sciences and is also INRIA's Scientific Director. Gilles Kahn is an expert in programming environments and computer aided proof environments. A former student of the École Polytechnique (1964), he spent several years conducting research abroad — Stanford University, U.S.A. (1968-71), University of Edinburgh, UK, (1975-76), the Isaac Newton Institute, Cambridge, UK (1995)-in collaboration with scientists of renown.

Gilles Kahn was hired by the CEA and then by the CISI, while carrying out his research at Rocquencourt. He joined INRIA (then called IRIA) in 1977 as the head of a project dedicated to the development of programming environments. In 1983, Gilles Kahn participated in the foundation of the INRIA Sophia Antipolis Research Unit where he continued to head a research project while simultaneously assuming the responsibility of steering research as deputy to the Unit's director. In 1993, he joined the Institute's General Management and became INRIA's Scientific Director.

Gilles Kahn is a member of many scientific boards of companies and research institutions in France and abroad (Onera, BRGM, CNES, EDF, Ilog, among others). He belongs to the Board of Directors of CNRS and the General Council for Information Technology. Gilles Kahn also participates in numerous international evaluations of scientific organizations all around the world and in international scientific award juries.

Gilles Kahn was also called upon for matters of national interest. In particular, he was a member of the investigating committee concerning the failure of the 501 Ariane flight in 1996. He co-authored a report on research in telecommunications with Didier Lombard, General Director for Industrial Strategy and the Ministry of industry in 1997. He also co-authored a report on access to knowledge for all addressed to the President of the Republic.

Gilles Kahn succeeds Michel Cosnard, who had been appointed in December 2003 and assumed the functions of President of INRIA until May 26, 2004. Michel Cosnard had asked to be relieved from his functions following the sudden demise of his son.

One of the first priorities of the new CEO will be to implement the Institute's 2004-2007 Strategic Plan that was approved by the Board of Directors in July 2003. He himself greatly contributed to this Strategic Plan. Gill Kahn represents INRIA on ERCIM's board of directors.