Australia invests in four new AI centres to boost employment

A$44 million (US$32.5 million) is being invested in four new artificial intelligence and digital capability centres to stimulate growth and employment.
By: | April 18, 2022

This move aims to give small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) access to local expertise to enable them to develop and adopt AI technologies that will generate jobs and lead to economic growth.

The investment is part of the federal government’s Artificial Intelligence Action Plan, which seeks to position Australia as a global leader in developing and adopting “trusted, secure and responsible” AI.

The centres’ objectives are to establish a “front door” for SMEs to access expertise and innovative technologies to adopt, adapt, test and deploy AI; foster collaboration and connect SMEs with opportunities to lift productivity and drive commercialisation; coordinate the growth of Australia’s AI ecosystem; and lift SME capabilities so they can confidently adopt AI solutions.

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Melissa Price, minister for science and technology, said, “Our government will continue to bolster the growth of AI by increasing the sharing of knowledge, supporting shared projects, and promoting long-term job creation. By requiring the centres to focus on a priority area, we can tailor the support for businesses to drive our manufacturing capability.”

Grants of up to A$11 million (US$8.1 million) would be available to set up each of the four centres, she said, according to the Global Government Forum.