International Artificial Intelligence Olympiad

The International AI Olympiad aims to be the World Championship in AI Competition for High School students to be held annually in a different country.

Artificial Intelligence is maturing as a scientific discipline with a broad scope, integrating many of the fields under the set of techniques to solve new problems or old problems in a better way. In the spirit of the Larry Tesler’s theorem “AI is whatever hasn’t been done yet.” IRCAI is planning to prepare a global competition for high school and university students testing their technical AI skills and interdisciplinary know-how on applying AI in various fields of science. 

There is a lack of similar competitions for the field of AI with a global nature and a strong research focus, similar to other prominent international Olympiads such as for Computer Science, Mathematics, Physics, or Chemistry. The planned concept of such an AI competition will include several innovative elements necessary for the future development and having a dynamic nature, adapting to the evolution of AI, but still maintaining the level suitable for students.

The main aim of such an annual event is to demystify AI, make it accessible to young students and to show the power of the AI approaches and tools in the hands of young people with a pioneering spirit.

In terms of implementation in the first phase we plan three main disciplines:

  • Traditional task solving where a student will have up-to 5 hours and a number of AI tasks with unclear and possibly non-existing optimal solutions. With a set of widely accessible tools, the student will need to solve the tasks in a ‘best as possible’ way by using innovative insights on how to approach the given problems.
  • Research work done by students individually or in teams in months before the actual Olympiad. The research works will be evaluated by a committee of experts and assessed along several criteria such as innovation, complexity, impact and others.
  • Visionary AI challenge where the students will be given futuristic tasks with virtual futuristic tools and the goal will be to sketch the solution and to predict consequences of such a solution on society and nature. The aim is to stimulate reasoning about the AI in future.

Since the area of AI is evolving fast, IRCAI is planning in the later editions of the Olympiad to extend the disciplines towards other types of tasks to test innovative and responsible attitude towards AI technology.

IRCAI will be particularly interested to stimulate participation from less developed countries and accordingly, the event will be structured in a way which will allow equal opportunities to whomever will be participating.

The International UNESCO AI Olympiad is planned to happen in early 2022 with the deadlines for registration and submissions in late 2021. Likely, the event will be online with a possibility to have a hybrid or a physical event when the pandemic calms down.

The Olympiad Board is a separate body within IRCAI that ensures that the competition takes place each year and that each host country observes the regulations and traditions of the Olympiad. It aims to be a competition for the world’s most talented mathematics and statistics students with computational thinking skills at secondary school level.


International Research Centre
on Artificial Intelligence (IRCAI)
under the auspices of UNESCO 

Jožef Stefan Institute
Jamova cesta 39
SI-1000 Ljubljana


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