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Artificial intelligence

Accelerating the ethical and responsible adoption of artificial intelligence and machine learning.


Artificial intelligence (AI) technologies, ranging from knowledge representation to advanced optimisation to machine learning (ML), are enabling effective human decision-making in increasingly complex tasks, transforming the global economy.

Since the term was coined in 1955, the set of technologies called “artificial intelligence” has been in flux, responding to philosophical debates, market trends, hyped headlines, and technical breakthroughs. This definitional target is still moving today. So at Digital Catapult, we define AI as any technology that intends to substitute or augment human decision-making. Regardless of ongoing debate, this operational definition helps maintain our aim: making sure that the latest AI technology is adopted effectively, responsibly and for people’s benefit. 

We organise our support for AI into three interlinked areas: maintaining broad awareness of the rapidly-evolving cutting-edge of AI, tackling the issues of deploying these technologies in the real world, and making sure that they are adopted ethically and responsibly.

We provide startups at the cutting edge of AI with access to computing power, hardware, expertise and mentorship, as well as experimentation space. We work with businesses at various stages of their AI adoption journey to help innovate, test, and develop proofs-of-concept. We support larger companies in accelerating AI adoption that matches their real-world needs and operations. Our industrial clients can connect with leading startups from the AI and machine learning ecosystem and benefit from our technology and business expertise on a range of AI related topics.

We also work with policymakers and academics to ensure that the UK takes the lead in transparent and ethical AI applications. Our work in applied AI ethics provides companies with the practical tools and advice they need to start actioning responsible and sustainable decisions using artificial intelligence and machine learning. Our independent Ethics Committee helps UK developers and organisations integrate ethical practice into the use of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) technologies.

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