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Artificial intelligence

AI is now critical national infrastructure

Artificial intelligence is evolving rapidly, with projects like OpenAI’s DALL-E 2, Google’s MINERVA and DeepMind’s Gato all pushing new technological boundaries. So far, national governments have been slow to adopt this advanced technology. In 2023, however, opportunities to deliver efficient, targeted, and affordable services to citizens will finally inspire them to embrace AI, making government more transparent, accessible, and efficient.

In some countries, AI is already being used to improve people’s interaction with the state. This year, the Estonian government launched a new AI-based virtual assistant called Bürokratt. Inspired by Amazon’s Alexa and Apple’s Siri, Bürokratt offers Estonians a voice-based way to navigate key state-provided services, such as renewing a passport or applying for benefits.

In Finland, a similar platform called AuroraAI was announced in 2018. It is part of a larger effort to provide Finns with a personalized and self-directed service that helps them through the different stages of life, whether be it the birth of a child, marriage or care for the elderly. . This platform not only helps citizens interact with government services, but also offers a proactive concierge-style medical service that helps them renew prescriptions or even informs them of new health risks.

In 2023, governments will finally start using AI and big data to tackle some of society’s biggest problems. In education, for example, companies like UK-based CENTURY Tech are helping governments deliver personalized learning. Its system essentially acts as a personal tutor, supplementing the in-person instruction a child receives by tracking progress and analyzing areas for improvement.

Done well, and with the proper privacy protections in place, such projects can generate a wealth of data that is in itself a competitive asset, helping research and innovation to thrive. Just think of the UK Biobank, one of the largest government-led biomedical initiatives in the world. This project produced a public database containing genetic information on more than half a million people. To date, it has been accessed by nearly 30,000 researchers from 86 countries, helping AI and biotech startups create new drugs and therapies.

In 2023, large-scale virtual worlds, such as those built by startup Improbable, will also allow lawmakers and officials to game plan and make decisions. These synthetic environments are essentially a metaverse for the government, helping them model cyberattacks or the spread of infectious diseases and prove how they might respond optimally.

However, for governments to fully deliver on the promise of AI, they will need to invest. Soon, a comprehensive digital infrastructure – which includes national computing power, a distributed cloud and a set of interoperable applications and machine-readable legislation – will be as important to a country as roads, rail and public energy supply. water. In 2023, more countries will accelerate the construction of such digital architectures nationwide, enabling them to deliver more AI-powered responsive services that speak to the individual and help the population as a whole. . In 2023, bold governments will make this decision and they will be examples for the rest of the world to follow.

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