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IBM Corp. will be setting up an artificial intelligence (AI) Centre of Excellence (CoE) in partnership with the Government e-Marketplace (GeM), CEO Arvind Krishna said on Monday at an AI Summit titled Responsible AI for Social Empowerment (RAISE 2020).

“AI is one of the biggest technology revolutions of our time and I am convinced that India is uniquely positioned to lead," Krishna said. “In the same way that we have electrified factories and machines in the past century, we will infuse AI into software and systems in the 21st century," he added.

As AI is slated to unlock $15.7 trillion in productivity by 2030, it has the potential to not only boost economic growth but improve the livelihoods of millions around the world, he said.

In India, IBM is collaborating with the local government in the state of Karnataka and NITI Aayog to deploy its precision agriculture solutions, which combine AI and weather data to help farmers make better decisions. “The platform’s critical capabilities were developed by our teams in India," Krishna said.

Krishna also highlighted the massive potential for AI in education as much of the time-consuming tasks for teachers can be automated. “This can help increase the student/teacher ratio in every class," he said.

AI penetration is 4% globally

Given that globally, the AI penetration is only at 4%, IBM believes that greater adoption of AI is driven by three imperatives – data, trust, and skills. “This is where India should focus its efforts," he said.

IBM is also investing to address the “massive" skills shortage in AI. “Through the IBM STEM for girls initiative, we are re teaching 80,000 girls across India how to code and build AI models. Our goal is to reach 200,000 students by 2022," Krishna said.

Earlier in July, IBM collaborated with the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) to integrate AI into the high school curriculum of 200 schools across India.

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