Google research manager Samy Bengio, who oversaw the company’s AI ethics group until a controversy led to the ouster of two female leaders, resigned on Tuesday to pursue other opportunities. Bloomberg reports: Bengio, who managed hundreds of researchers in the Google Brain team, announced his departure in an email to staff that was obtained by Bloomberg. His last day will be April 28. An expert in a type of AI known as machine learning, Bengio joined Google in 2007. Ousted Ethical AI co-leads Timnit Gebru and Margaret Mitchell had reported to Bengio and considered him an ally. In February, Google reorganized the research unit, placing the remaining Ethical AI group members under Marian Croak, cutting Bengio’s responsibilities.
“While I am looking forward to my next challenge, there’s no doubt that leaving this wonderful team is really difficult,” Bengio wrote in the email. “I learned so much with all of you, in terms of machine learning research of course, but also on how difficult yet important it is to organize a large team of researchers so as to promote long term ambitious research, exploration, rigor, diversity and inclusion,” Bengio wrote in his email. He did not refer to Gebru, Mitchell or the disagreements that led to their departures. […]