The U.K. government is planning to fund thousands of postgraduate students that want to study a Masters or a PhD in artificial intelligence as it looks to keep pace with the U.S. and China.
AI is poised to become the most significant technology for a generation but there are only so many people that know how to develop the technology, which could have a huge impact on industries such as healthcare, energy, and automotive.
Business Secretary Greg Clark and Digital Secretary Jeremy Wright announced on Thursday that the government will commit up to £115 million towards training the next generation of AI talent.
In a press release, the government said 1,000 students will receive funding to enable them to complete PhDs at 16 U.K. Research and Innovation AI Centres for Doctoral Training (CDTs), located across the country. The full list of centres can be found at the end of this article.
A cohort of businesses — including Google DeepMind, BAE Systems and Cisco — have also pledged to help fund 200 new AI masters courses at UK universities.
Five new research fellowships are also being created in collaboration with the Alan Turing Institute in a bid to retain and attract top AI talent in U.K. academic institutions.
According to government quango U.K. Research & Innovation, industry partners will commit £78 million, while partner universities are committing a further £23 million. That brings total funding to over £200 million.
Business Secretary Greg Clark said in a statement:
“The U.K. has long been a nation of innovators. This AI skills and talent investment will help nurture leading U.K. and international talent to ensure we retain our world-beating reputation in research and development.
“Artificial intelligence has great potential to drive up productivity and enhance every industry throughout our economy, from more effective disease diagnosis to building smart homes. Today’s announcement is our modern Industrial Strategy in action, investing in skills and talent to drive high skilled jobs, growth and productivity across the U.K.”
Figures compiled by analysis firm Dealroom show that the number of venture capital investments into the U.K.’s rapidly growing AI sector soared by 17% last year. In total, £998 million was invested in the U.K.’s AI sector.
AI doctoral training centres:
1. Foundational Artificial Intelligence (Led by Professor David Barber, UCL)
2. AI-enabled Healthcare Systems (Led by Professor Geraint Rees, UCL)
3. Data Science and AI for Sustainable Futures (Led by Professor Gavin Shaddick, University of Exeter)
4. Natural Language Processing (Led by Professor Mirella Lapata, University of Edinburgh)
5. Artificial Intelligence and Music (Led by Professor Simon Dixon, Queen Mary University of London)
6. Speech and Language Technologies and their Applications (Led by Professor Thomas Hain, University of Sheffield)
7. Artificial Intelligence for Healthcare (Led by Dr Aldo Faisal, Imperial College London)
8. Accountable, Responsible and Transparent AI (Led by Professor Eamonn O’Neill, University of Bath)
9. Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning and Advanced Computing (Led by Professor Gert Aarts, Swansea University)
10. Machine Intelligence for Nano-electronic Devices and Systems (Led by Professor Tim Norman, University of Southampton)
11. Biomedical Artificial Intelligence (Led by Professor Guido Sanguinetti, University of Edinburgh)
12. Training in Social Intelligent Artificial Agents (Led by Professor Alessandro Vinciarelli, University of Glasgow)
13. Centre for Doctoral Training in Interactive Artificial Intelligence (Led by Professor Peter Flach, University of Bristol)
14. Application of Artificial Intelligence to the study of Environmental Risks (AI4ER) (Led by Professor Simon Redfern, University of Cambridge)
15. Safe and Trusted Artificial Intelligence (Led by Professor Michael Luck, King’s College London)
16. Artificial Intelligence for Medical Diagnosis and Care (Led by Professor David Hogg, University of Leeds)
U.K. Government To Fund AI University Courses With £115m – Forbes