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Government set to boost the UK artificial intelligence sector

Monday 27th February, 2017

The government is planning to announce new measures to help artificial intelligence (AI) as part of a digital strategy to boost growth and deliver a thriving digital economy.

Accenture has estimated AI could add in the region of £654 billion ($814 billion) to the UK economy by 2035. So the Strategy, due to be published by Culture Secretary Karen Bradley MP on Wednesday this week, builds on the plan set out in the Government’s Industrial Strategy to capitalise on Britain’s existing strengths and back new technologies.

As part of this proposed strategy the Government is expected to confirm a funding boost of £17.3m from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) to support the development of new Robotics and Artificial Intelligence (RAI) technologies in universities across the UK. Along with this, a major AI review led by two industry experts, Wendy Hall and Jérôme Pesenti to identify the critical elements for the exciting technology to thrive and grow in the UK. It will consider how Government and industry could work together to back this technology, which could inform a sector deal.

Culture Secretary Karen Bradley said: We are already pioneers in today’s artificial intelligence revolution and the Digital Strategy will build on our strengths to make sure UK-based scientists, researchers and entrepreneurs continue to be at the forefront.

Technologies like AI have the potential to transform how we live, work, travel and learn, and I am pleased that Professor Dame Wendy Hall and Jérôme Pesenti will be leading this review. It’s great that Government and industry will be working together to drive growth in the sector, to realise all the economic and social benefits for the UK.

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