Today the House of Lords Select Committee on Artificial Intelligence launched their report with a question: AI in the UK: ready, willing and able? Their answer is a classic cocktail of yes, but not really. We are certainly blessed with world leading artificial intelligence (AI) research teams and commercial innovators. That is without doubt, and these experts are ‘ready willing and able’ to drive the AI revolution in what we hope will be the ethically rigorous manner this report demands. However, it is everyone else beyond these experts, and in particular our education system, where there is much work to be done for us to be as ‘ready, willing and able’ as this report demands.
We are facing a perfect storm of big data, sophisticated AI algorithms and vast amounts of cheap computing power and storage. Much of this data is currently freely available and unregulated and many companies are making a great deal of money by using AI and computing power to process this data in ways that most of us know nothing about and without (more…)
Learning is the key to success in the fourth industrial revolution and I was delighted to be asked to provide evidence to the Future of Work Commission at the House of Lords. It helped me to crystalize my thinking.
Learning is at the heart of the fundamental insight that motivated reformers and precipitated the creation of state-funded universal schooling in the Industrial Revolution. This insight was that when education fails to keep pace with technology, workers suffer, fall behind, and society starts to fragment. When learning and innovation progress in harmony then we all feel the benefits. Finland’s Minister of Education and Culture, for example, has said that she wanted her country to be “continuously learning” and developing “strong, transferable skills” in a society where people can “return to education when they need it.”
But what does this mean? In order to prosper the UK needs a workforce that can adapt to (more…)