THE GOVERNMENT intends to establish a national center for artificial intelligence (AI) research to assist the private sector in developing new technologies.
The National Center for AI Research (N-CAIR), a target of the artificial intelligence roadmap unveiled on Wednesday, will hire full-time research scientists and engineers.
“The N-CAIR will encourage companies to adopt AI by building their capacity to produce new products, processes, and services that use AI,” Trade Secretary Ramon M. Lopez said at the launch.
The AI roadmap outlined 42 “strategic tasks” or priorities, including policy, workforce growth, research and development, digitization, and infrastructure.
One of the tasks is to establish an AI research center, which will be operated by private companies and central to regional hubs identified by the government, according to the Asian Institute of Management-Aboitiz Chairman in Data Science Christopher P. Monterola.
“The idea is for this to make the companies in the Philippines competitive,” he said, adding that the facilities would house national data and research cloud centers.
Agricultural technology and aquaculture, transportation and urban science, smart manufacturing, healthcare, and resilience or disaster-management technology will be prioritized in the center’s first three to five years.
According to Mr. Monterola, the effectiveness of the roadmap can be calculated by internet speed and reliability, the global innovation index ranking, education quality rankings, labor market productivity and jobs, and the number of new companies that use AI as essential components of goods.
He also stated that the Philippines would make an effort to attract top global companies to conduct research and development in the region.
According to Mr. Lopez, the center will help small businesses increase efficiency through data science and analytics.
“The potential AI applications that can benefit companies include avoiding spoilage of agricultural produce, predicting maintenance of equipment, optimizing processes in factories, and enhancing business decision-making through advanced analytics. This will lead to more operational efficiencies and innovation,” he said.
Rey E. Untal, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines, hopes that the center will help generate higher-value jobs in emerging technologies, citing a shortage of upskilling opportunities for professionals.
“Thea re is room and great opportunity for the industry to partner with N-CAIR in this case to work on comprehensive programs that will utilize real-life use cases across the variety of industries that we service,” he said.
To create the roadmap, the Trade department collaborated with data scientists from the Asian Institute of Management-Aboitiz School of Innovation, Technology, and Entrepreneurship.