University of Birmingham ties up with Maharashtra on new AI Research & Innovation Hub
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University of Birmingham ties up with Maharashtra on new AI Research & Innovation Hub

The University of Birmingham is partnering with the government of Maharashtra to set up a specialist Research and Innovation Hub to tackle challenges in key state priority areas including agriculture and healthcare using artificial intelligence (AI).

Working with strategy partner EY, the agreement inked recently in Mumbai brings together state public universities Kavayitri Bahinabai Chaudhari North Maharashtra University in Jalgaon, COEP Technological University and Savitribai Phule Pune University in Pune during the initial phase of the project. Researchers from the partner universities have identified two themes involving the development of AI systems using Natural Language Processing to:

  • Automatically extract information from clinical records in Marathi, Hindi and other Indian languages and then classify using machine learning algorithms to provide insights and improvements in healthcare and patient outcomes.

  • Provide agricultural extension services to the state’s farmers in Marathi, Hindi, and other Indian languages by developing AI Chatbots that can converse, answer questions, and explain concepts expressed in these languages

Professor Adam Tickell, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Birmingham, said: “India is pursuing excellence in AI models, techniques, and creative use of data. We look forward to working with the Government of Maharashtra, and our Indian academic counterparts to create impactful research that will help to shape state policy on the adoption and use of AI in the key areas of healthcare and agriculture.”

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The partnership aims to develop a rich environment of collaborative research between the University of Birmingham and the state-funded universities in the fields of AI and Data Science, with opportunities for PhD research built in.

Vikas Rastogi, Principal Secretary, Department of Higher and Technical Education, government of Maharashtra, noted: “Through the AI Research and Innovation Hub, the state aims to establish a new model for collaborative research that leverages the expertise of local researchers along with International counterparts to develop innovative solutions to state priority areas.”

The partners will work together to establish an AI Research and Innovation Hub within Maharashtra and attract funding from the state government, industry, and other agencies to support innovative collaborative research between experts at the three state universities and the University of Birmingham.

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Satyam Shivam Sundaram, Partner, Strategy and Transactions at EY commented: “This is a great initiative by the government of Maharashtra. The Maharashtra Responsible Research and Innovation Taskforce and the University of Birmingham together may be able to solve problems of scale using technology to benefit the larger population.”

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