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UK universities to train next-gen AI talent

Joint government-industry package will establish a nationwide programme of funded artificial intelligence masters courses, combined with work-based placements

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UK wants to boost productivity and create high-skilled jobs as part of its Industrial Strategy
UK wants to boost productivity and create high-skilled jobs as part of its Industrial Strategy

More than 1,200 UK graduates are to be offered a chance to become qualified experts in artificial intelligence (AI) through a nationwide programme of AI Masters courses and work-based placements.

 

The new joint government-industry package will see up to 200 AI Masters places made available at UK universities, backed by tech companies including Deepmind, QuantumBlack, Cisco and BAE Systems.

 

Addressing the AI skills gap

 

According to the Government, the Masters programme, in collaboration with the Industry of Coding and British Computer Society, marks the first nationwide effort to address the skills gap at this level.

 

In addition, 1,000 students will have the opportunity to enhance their skills with new PhDs at 16 dedicated UK Research and Innovation AI Centres for Doctoral Training (CDTs) as part of the scheme to drive up skills in the AI sector.

 

The new package forms part of the Government’s modern Industrial Strategy’s AI sector deal backed by industry funding and up to £110m government investment.

 

“The UK has long been a nation of innovators. This AI skills and talent investment will help nurture leading UK and international talent to ensure we retain our world-beating reputation in research and development,” said Greg Clark, business secretary.

 

“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. [This] announcement is our modern Industrial Strategy in action, investing in skills and talent to drive high skilled jobs, growth and productivity across the UK.”

“Artificial intelligence represents an incredible opportunity to transform our economy and our lives for the better”

To help develop the best and brightest AI researchers in the UK, the Government has announced it is also funding a new global Fellowship programme. Up to five AI research fellowships will be created in collaboration with the Alan Turing Institute with the aim of both attracting and retaining the best research talent from around the world.

 

“Artificial intelligence represents an incredible opportunity to transform our economy and our lives for the better,” said Adrian Smith, institute director, the Alan Turing Institute.

 

“The Turing AI Fellowships will be crucial in building UK leadership capability, driving forward ambitious research and ensuring that the UK can attract, retain, and develop world-leading research talent.”

 

"The UK is not only the birthplace to the father of artificial intelligence, Alan Turing, but we are leading the way on work to ensure AI innovation has ethics at its core,” continued Jeremy Wright, digital secretary.

 

“We want to keep up this momentum and cement our reputation as pioneers in AI. Working with world class academic institutions and industry we will be able to train the next generation of top-tier AI talent and maintain the UK’s reputation as a trailblazer in emerging technologies.”

 

 

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