Microsoft AI, research head steps down

Harry Shum, PhD, executive vice president of Microsoft's artificial intelligence and research group since its founding in 2016, will leave the company in early 2020, CNBC reports.

Dr. Shum, who first joined Microsoft as a researcher in 1996, will be replaced by the company's chief technology officer, Kevin Scott. Until his official departure, Dr. Shum will continue to serve as an advisor to CEO Satya Nadella and co-founder Bill Gates, a company spokesperson confirmed to CNBC.

"Harry has had a profound impact on Microsoft. His contributions in the fields of computer science and AI leave a legacy and a strong foundation for future innovation. I want to thank him for his leadership and partnership, and for all he has done for Microsoft," Mr. Nadella said in a statement.

Under Dr. Shum's guidance, Microsoft's AI and research group has launched several healthcare-related projects in the past several years. Most recently, the company partnered with the Bar Harbor, Maine-based Jackson Laboratory to refine an AI-powered precision oncology tool, teamed up with Nuance to create the "exam room of the future" and formed an "AI Innovation Digital Alliance" with the city of Louisville, Ky., to support the local healthcare industry.

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