Government pledges £100m investment for AI taskforce

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The Government is to invest £100 million for a taskforce to develop AI models which can be used in fields such as healthcare and education.

The recently formed Department for Science, Innovation and Technology said the cash injection will be start-up funding to support the taskforce in the development of foundation models – a type of artificial intelligence used by chatbots such as ChatGPT and Google Bard.

It comes amid recent rapid acceleration in the technologies, which use large data sets for a vast array of tasks.

The new taskforce across Government and industry will use the funding in order to “ensure sovereign capabilities and broad adoption of safe and reliable foundation models”, the department said.

Business Connect event – London
Prime Minister Rishi Sunak during a Business Connect event in North London (Daniel Leal/PA)

The Prime Minister said: “Harnessing the potential of AI provides enormous opportunities to grow our economy, create better-paid jobs, and build a better future through advances in healthcare and security.

“By investing in emerging technologies through our new expert taskforce, we can continue to lead the way in developing safe and trustworthy AI as part of shaping a more innovative UK economy.”

The first pilots of the developed models targeting public services are expected to launch in the next six months, the department said.

The taskforce will be led by a chair who will be announced later in the summer.

Michelle Donelan, Secretary of State for Science, Innovation and Technology, added: “Developed responsibly, cutting-edge AI can have a transformative impact in nearly every industry.

“It can revolutionise the way we develop new medical treatments, tackle climate change and improve our public services, all while growing and future-proofing our economy.”

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