Dutch AI research: little but fast growing

Dutch AI research: little but fast growing

The Netherlands does relatively little research into the application of artificial intelligence (AI). But the proportion of AI studies is increasing rapidly compared to other countries. Only in the United States and Japan did this share grow faster. This is the conclusion of the Rathenau Institute.

In the total supply of scientific research in the Netherlands, research into the use of artificial intelligence constitutes a modest portion. In our country, the proportion of AI studies is still lower than the average of the ten countries and the European Union compared by the Rathenau Institute.

Dutch AI research focuses far more than the global average on machine learning, natural language processing, planning, and decision support.

leader in china

Between 2013 and 2018, AI research was published 4,047 times in the Netherlands. This seems like a lot, but it isn’t. China leads (nearly 81,000 publications), followed by member states of the European Union (about 69,000) and the United States (over 55,000). Also in countries such as India, UK, Germany, Japan and Iran more on this topic has been published over here. More than 314,000 scientific publications on artificial intelligence were published worldwide during this period.

In the Netherlands, 985 people (partially) participated in AI research in the period in question. This represents about 1.5 percent of the global total number of researchers working in technology. Worldwide there were more than 66 thousand.

strong growth

Despite the modest contribution of Dutch scientists to global research in the field of artificial intelligence, the Rathenau Institute is positive about the developments. Dutch research on artificial intelligence has been strongly intensified in recent years, according to the organization in The Hague. This is an increase of 115 percent, or more than double, between 2013 and 2018. Moreover, Dutch studies quote relatively often: more than double the rate. The number of citations is an indicator of the quality of the research.

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There is a lot of money available in the Netherlands for AI research. For example, the government and the business community have developed the investment program in the AiNed National Growth Fund, which should lead to an investment of 2.1 billion euros between now and 2027. In addition, the research organization NWO and the government agency RVO are seeing an increase in the volume and share of funding that goes to Artificial intelligence projects.

Cooperation with businessmen

An increasing share of AI research is being conducted in collaboration with the business community. This applies remarkably often in the Netherlands. In an average of twelve percent of Dutch AI studies, institutions of higher education work side by side with the business community. Only in the United States is this percentage higher (about fourteen percent).

The Rathenau Institute conducts research on the impact of technology on society. For the study described above, the researchers themselves relied on the Scopus database of the data company Elsevier. Research summaries and citations are neatly maintained in this database.

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