The UK has plans to become a global AI superpower, putting London right in the middle of an ambitious effort to build and launch both public and private AI initiatives. Some of the most exciting news could be coming from London in the next few years, so let’s take a look at what’s fueling the drive.
Government support provides the foundation for innovation
The UK government launched The National Artificial Intelligence Strategy back in September 2021. That ten-year initiative, implemented by the new Office for Artificial Intelligence, laid out an initial plan for improving the lives of UK citizens through AI-driven tools and programs. This has led to several initiatives designed to improve the overall ecosystem of AI.
The AI Standard Hub
Just recently launched, this hub provides a place for community collaboration and the dissemination of information. It also offers practical tools for companies looking to deploy AI in business settings and will provide insight into global AI Standards.
Organizations looking for guidance for governance as well can also find resources designed to guide governance initiatives. It kicks off with a pilot phase focused on growing engagement through workshops, events, and training sessions.
£23 million to create 2,000 scholarships in AI and data science
The UK government will also designate money towards equipping the next generation of workforce in the AI and data science world. Funding will go particularly to underrepresented groups to allow better diversity within the field.
In addition, companies are encouraged to submit their own funding to complement government scholarships. These conversion degrees target master’s level students whether their undergraduate field is in AI or not, so more types of people can make a successful transition into the tech field.
The Center for Data Ethics
The center will explore the pathways for AI to create better living standards for citizens, equitable access to AI-driven programs, and the ethical implications of deploying AI in the public sphere. It will provide blueprints for other cities, institutions, and locations seeking to deploy ethical AI programs.
London Universities are getting into the action
With nearly every major school in the London area now offering some AI-focused programs, student research coming from London is big news.
- This year, researchers from University College London will roll out their AI-driven 20-second heart disease diagnostic tool with the National Health Service.
- Imperial College London is using a new AI mapping tool to uncover how proteins relate to one another, with implications for drug discovery and other life science applications.
- King’s College has been using NVIDIA’s Cambridge-1 to advance scientific research.
Not only that, but students from around the world can take advantage of some of London’s most famous higher education institutions to advance their artificial intelligence research and studies alongside experts and business groups.
Startups and other research groups are securing massive funding
The city’s research and startup groups are also securing funding from local VC backers and those abroad.
- The London Technology Club has begun a £30m fund for fintech and AI startups.
- AI customer support chatbot from Futr raised £2.1 million.
- Early-stage capital firm Creator Fund will offer £15 million to back deep tech student founders.
According to a London mayor’s report, there are over 600 AI-based companies with headquarters in London. In addition, the city is home to over 700 AI-based startups. 21 startups were founded in the past year alone, according to a Crunchbase search.
The city is working to make AI part of everyday life
The goal of these AI initiatives is to improve the lives of citizens in London and all across the world. The city is a hotbed of practical research with multiple fields seeing advancements.
- London Doctors develop AI-driven stroke treatment: Computers will scan images of stroke patients and offer guidance for the best patient care plans to alleviate bottlenecks from radiologist shortages.
- House of Lords committee hears arguments for police monitoring: AI could also help process massive amounts of data to determine if police have overstepped their bounds and what could be done to prevent abuses of power.
- Startup Papercup has received funding for language programs: The startup uses AI to translate video content into other languages using a synthetic voice-over.
- Two brothers are working with local councils to create AI assistance for isolated individuals: Monty and Hector Alexander’s grandmother was left unaided for hours after a fall, prompting them to leverage their expertise to create better, more assistive communication systems.
As the UK advances its artificial intelligence initiatives for the entire country, we can expect London to showcase some of the most forward-thinking blueprints and deployments as the capital city.
London is a hotbed for AI initiatives
As the home of the Turing Institute and DeepMind, London has the foundation for making huge strides in AI deployment. Not only are major research institutes launching AI incubators, advanced degrees, and business or research partnerships, there is a significant government push to make London an AI leader.
Join us in London for ODSC Europe 2022
No matter what your interest is in AI, events are happening year-round in the field, including our very own ODSC Europe, hosted this year in London. It’s one of the best chances you’ll have to network with innovators in the field and see where AI might go in London and around the globe. Join us there and register now for 50% off all ticket types.
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