Published on February 6, 2024, 9:22 am
The UK government has announced a £100 million funding initiative to support the development of artificial intelligence (AI) research centers and prepare regulators for the widespread adoption of AI technology. This investment is in response to the consultation on the AI Regulation White Paper, with a specific focus on helping regulators develop practical tools to monitor and address risks and opportunities in various sectors.
Regulators such as Ofcom and the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) are being asked to publish their approach to managing AI by April 30th, outlining the risks specific to their areas, current skills capabilities, and plans for regulating AI in the coming year. The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has already started this process by updating its guidance on how data protection laws apply to AI systems.
To support these efforts, the government will launch a steering committee in spring that will guide the activities of a formal regulatory structure for AI within the government. It aims to ensure that regulators are adaptable enough to keep up with rapid advancements in AI technologies, particularly generative AI.
Approximately £90 million of funding will be allocated toward establishing nine new research hubs across the UK. These hubs will focus on various areas such as healthcare, chemistry, and mathematics. Additionally, there will be £9 million of funding through the International Science Partnerships Fund to facilitate collaboration between researchers and innovators in the UK and US for developing safe and responsible AI.
Furthermore, £2 million of Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) funding will go towards supporting research projects aimed at defining responsible AI across different sectors like education, policing, and creative industries. An additional £19 million will support 21 projects focused on developing trusted and responsible AI solutions that drive productivity.
Industry experts have praised this funding initiative as a step towards ensuring regulatory flexibility as global adoption of AI continues to grow. They emphasize that balancing innovation with risk mitigation is crucial for maintaining international leadership in AI governance.
Overall, this funding announcement underscores the UK government’s commitment to a pro-innovation and pro-safety approach with regard to AI. Regulators will play a crucial role in promoting responsible development, and additional steps are being taken to bring expertise into the government and assess immediate risks.
To stay updated on the latest news and resources related to AI, industry professionals can sign up to receive reports on topics such as AI cybercrime and security. This initiative aims to support continuous learning about AI advancements and their implications for various sectors.
As the global landscape evolves, it is essential for governments, organizations, and individuals to prioritize responsible development and regulation of AI. By investing in research, supporting regulators, and fostering collaboration between experts, the UK government aims to harness the benefits of AI while ensuring its safe deployment across diverse industries.
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