The UK Government has announced a £118m boost to skills funding for AI, to ensure the country remains at the forefront of this technology. The investment includes naming 12 further Centers for Doctoral Training in AI that will benefit from £117m in previously-announced Government backing through UK Research and Innovation, as well as a new visa scheme to make it easier for businesses to bring talented AI researchers to the UK. In addition, 15 science and technology scholarships will be available at some of the UK’s leading universities, and there will be funding for a £1m grants scheme to help top AI talent relocate to the UK, alongside a pilot of a new scholarship scheme called ‘Backing Invisible Geniuses’. These measures emphasize the importance of cultivating top AI research talent to drive progress in crucial areas such as AI safety, and to ensure the whole country can enjoy the benefits of this technology.
Secretary of State Michelle Donelan said the plans would future-proof the UK’s skills base, so people can benefit from AI’s continued development in a safe, ethical, and responsible way. Alongside these measures, there are also plans to use AI to improve healthcare services, such as the rollout of AI tech in 64 NHS trusts across the country to improve the diagnosis of conditions like lung cancer. The government will also deploy AI to improve the productivity of teachers and JobCentre work coaches, leading to better educational attainment and more people finding work.
This investment by the UK government is vital to ensure AI continues to transform how we work and our quality of life. UKRI’s investment of £117m in Centres for Doctoral Training will develop the talented researchers and innovators we need for a successful future. Chief Executive Professor Dame Ottoline Leyser highlights that it is crucial to cultivate talented individuals to steward AI’s responsible and trustworthy adoption. Overall, these measures demonstrate the government’s commitment to leverage AI’s enormous potential safely and ethically, ensuring the UK maintains its competitive edge in AI expertise and fosters the next generation of researchers who can unlock this technology’s transformational benefits.