NITI Aayog, Intel, TIFR join hands to set up AI research centre

NITI Aayog, Intel, and Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR) have joined hands to set up a Model International Centre for Transformative Artificial Intelligence (ICTAI) — a research institution focussed on application-based AI research in healthcare, agriculture and smart mobility to solve major challenges in these areas across India.

Based in Bengaluru, ICTAI will conduct advanced research to incubate AI-led solutions in healthcare, agriculture and smart mobility. Its focus will be a collaboration with industry leaders, startups, and AI services and product companies to productise technologies and IP that are developed at the model ICTAI. The model research centre will also support skilling and talent development for world-class AI talent.

“NITI Aayog had recommended ICTAIs for applied research in AI in the National Strategy Paper. Private sector collaboration is deemed to be essential in making fundamental research get adopted for solving actual problems India faces, especially in the five sectors identified in the paper – healthcare, agriculture, education, smart cities and mobility,” said Anna Roy, Advisor, NITI Aayog.

Through this collaborative effort, the model ICTAI is chartered to develop AI foundational frameworks, tools and assets, including curated datasets and unique AI algorithms. The intent is to develop standards and support policy development related to information technology such as data-storage, information security, privacy, and ethics for data capture and use.

The model Centre also plans to develop AI foundational technologies to promote applied research that can scale for national impact and will lead to the creation of a vibrant and self-sustaining ecosystem.

“Artificial Intelligence is going to be a transformative driver of economic growth and social progress, and Intel’s vision is to drive human-centric AI to benefit humanity in an inclusive manner. In India, through the AI-for-All initiative, we aim to deliver the twin goals of solving hard problems of humanity, and helping India achieve its vision of global AI leader, by bringing together a rich ecosystem of research, innovation, technology development and deployment,” said Nivruti Rai, Country Head, Intel India, and Vice President, Data Center Group.

According to Professor Sandip Trivedi, Director TIFR, the plan is to bring fundamental and applied research, innovation and technology development together “to solve important problems facing our nation with potentially transformative effects on society”.

“There are also a number of important issues related to ethics, privacy, etc, that AI and related technologies raise which are important to address. TIFR is excited to be in this collaboration; this center will be an important role model for future partnerships between industry, academia and government, which are the need of the hour in our country today,” Professor Trivedi said.

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