Microsoft Research (MSR) is the research subsidiary of Microsoft. It was formed in 1991, with the intent to advance state-of-the-art computing and solve difficult world problems through technological innovation in collaboration with academic, government, and industry researchers. The Microsoft Research team employs more than 1,000 computer scientists, physicists, engineers, and mathematicians, including Turing Award winners, Fields Medal winners, MacArthur Fellows, and Dijkstra Prize winners.
Between 2010 and 2018, 154,000 AI patents were filed worldwide, with Microsoft having by far the largest percentage of those patents, at 20%.
Research labs in most companies are usually focused on R&D efforts to directly improve their own future products. However, the primary mission of Microsoft Research is to perform fundamental science and engineering research with the intent of publishing top-tier academic papers in computer science and a few related fields.
Microsoft Research includes the core Microsoft Research labs and Microsoft Research AI, Microsoft Research NeXT (for New Experiences and Technologies), and other incubation efforts all directed by corporate vice president Peter Lee.
Microsoft research is categorized into the following broad areas:
Microsoft Research sponsors the Microsoft Research Fellowship for graduate students.
Microsoft has research labs around the world including the following non-exhaustive list: