Insights on AI strategies in the Nordic countries

In November 2022, AI silos Spread North African State for Artificial Intelligence 2022its second annual report providing an overview of what is happening with artificial intelligence (AI) in Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden.

AI silos It provides professional services in the field of artificial intelligence from its nine offices in Denmark, Finland and Sweden. Since its founding in 2017, it has grown into one of the largest private AI labs in Europe, with 240 experts including 120 AI specialists at PhD level.

to me Chief Technology Officer Nico FoucaultAnd Nordic countries On the right track with data and artificial intelligenceHowever, much more needs to be done to unlock the true potential of machine learning technologies.

“Industry-leading products are going to be elevated by AI, one way or another,” he told Computer Weekly. As can be seen in North Country Report from Amnesty International, the vast majority of Nordic companies are already investing in product development to add AI features to their products. However, what is lacking is a systematic way to introduce AI technologies into production, to benefit customers who use the products and services of northern companies. This requires not only new types of expertise, but also new ways of organizing the development of AI-driven products. “

One challenge for the Nordic countries is gaining critical mass. Because of the relatively small population, it is difficult to create a pool of experts and a set of best practices to share. The region has less than 2% of the worldwide AI talent pool, and Nordic countries have made a conscious decision to focus more on workforce quality and less on quantity. They have also made efforts to attract AI talents from abroad – and this has borne fruit, creating a positive trend for talent migration.

All Nordic countries face challenges in building products with natural language features for smaller language groups. Since none of the languages ​​are major world languages, there are no large native language data sets to train AI models.

tNordic countries are generally early adopters of technology – and AI is no exception. More than 25% of Northern companies are already investing at least 20% of their R&D budget in AI projects. Moreover, the Nordic countries plan to get ahead – or at least keep up with other industrialized nations. Each of the four countries has at least one top-ranked AI educational institution – and private investment in AI in the region has doubled since 2021.

Northern companies mostly apply AI to their core offering – to improve the quality of their products and services, product features and usability. Using AI in support functions is a secondary priority, but many companies have already made forays into this field as well.

Almost all organizations surveyed plan to continue investing in AI, and more than half expect to see new technologies in the next six months. “As the report shows, AI maturity is high in the Nordic countries, and it’s great to see that companies plan to invest even in these challenging times,” said Vuokko.

However, in addition to shaping new AI use cases, many companies are now rethinking their approach to AI. Instead of a five-year investment cycle, they’re now planning a multi-decade shift that could really change what and how they offer their clients. This focus on new long-term investments is likely to widen the gap between those who already know how to leverage production AI technologies and those who are stuck with trials.”

Danish Amnesty International

Denmark’s National AI Strategy emphasizes AI ethics and building local solutions. The strategy focuses on improving public services through artificial intelligence, encouraging adoption among businesses and supporting a dynamic research community. A good sign of the enthusiasm in Denmark is that private investment in artificial intelligence has increased in the past few years.

The biggest challenge for Danish companies is finding enough technicians to run the projects. This problem manifests itself most often when it comes to turning a proof-of-concept project into an ongoing part of the business — or, in cases where companies are in the business of selling technology, into a product.

Another big challenge facing Denmark is keeping up with the computational needs of AI algorithms, which require more computing power every year. There is also a lack of training data on population needs. Part of the problem is getting good data without compromising data privacy – something that’s particularly challenging with medical and demographic data. Another part of the problem with not having enough data is that the Danish-speaking population is too small to generate as much data as some other industrialized countries.

Denmark is particularly strong in the hearing systems sectors. The country is a leading exporter of hearing aids, and artificial intelligence plays an increasingly important role in this field, as machine learning has become essential for advanced acoustic modeling used in hearing aids. Medicines, the media and the public sector are early adopters of AI in Denmark.

Finland’s strategy

Finland published its National Strategy for Artificial Intelligence in 2017 – and was one of the first countries in the world to do so. The strategy is updated regularly, with increased focus on Implementation and deployment support rather than abstract ideas and guidelines.

Finnish AI research mainly works on three different dimensions. The first is to improve the performance of the AI ​​algorithms to avoid the problem where the computational requirements are far ahead of what the hardware can provide. As a small country, Finland is particularly sensitive to the rising costs of computing power – even though it is home to what is currently the most powerful supercomputer in Europe, area.

The second dimension Trustworthy AI. Ethics and values ​​are important to Finland, as they are in all other Nordic countries. Research into trustworthy AI aims to overcome the complex ethical challenges inherent in AI.

The third dimension is improving human-machine interactions. The aim of this research is to enhance the role of artificial intelligence as a tool that supports humans.

more in Norway

Norway published a file National strategy for artificial intelligence In January 2020. The country hopes to support key industries with artificial intelligence. This includes health care, marine, energy and public administration.

It launched its AI Regulatory Sandbox project in March 2021, which will help companies ensure their AI offerings comply with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) by providing them with an environment in which they can run tests.

Of the four Nordic countries Silo AI surveyed, Norway has the lowest percentage of companies who answered that they already use AI. It should be noted that Norway is also the only one of the four countries where Silo AI does not have an office.

in favor of the Swedes

Sweden launched its National Strategy for Artificial Intelligence in 2018. The government aims to use AI to increase the well-being of its citizens and gain a competitive advantage.

Sweden has a very favorable political climate for AI. The state funds research and development through various agencies, most notably Vinnova, which, by April 2021, was funding 256 Artificial intelligence projects.

Part of the funding is directed to AI Sweden, the national center for research and innovation in applied artificial intelligence. AI Sweden’s mission is to accelerate the use of artificial intelligence, competency sharing and manage projects of national interest, in collaboration with nearly 70 partners.

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