Posted on October 16, 2017 by staff

Government sets out UK’s artificial intelligence vision


Artificial intelligence could unlock £630 billion for the UK economy by 2035, according to ministers.

AI’s usefulness in performing dangerous tasks was highlighted by culture minister Karen Bradley alongside the publication of a government-commissioned report into how AI can be developed in the UK.

The study, which was promised in the government’s ‘digital strategy’ in March, made 18 key recommendations and cited an industrial green paper published in January that found AI could add £630bn to the British economy by 2035.

Led by Professor Dame Wendy Hall, regius professor of computer science at the University of Southampton, it highlighted suitable tasks such as smart scheduling of medical operations and self-driving cars for hire.

“I want the UK to lead the way in AI. It has the potential to improve our everyday lives – from healthcare to robots that perform dangerous tasks,” said Bradley.

Dame Hall and co-author Jerome Pesenti, chief executive of BenevelentTech, wrote: “Our vision is for the UK to become the best place in the world for businesses developing and deploying AI to start, grow and thrive.

“The UK is still regarded as a centre of expertise.”

The study called for ‘data trusts’ to allow the secure sharing of data across sectors which could accelerate growth.

It also suggested increasing the availability of skilled talent through industry-funded Master’s programmes and more PhD places.

It also cited the importance of a positive public perception of AI.

Business secretary Greg Clark said: “This important review exemplifies the world-class expertise the UK already has in AI, demonstrating the huge social and economic benefits its use can bring.”