The Netherlands lags behind in artificial intelligence

The Netherlands lags behind in artificial intelligence

Universities and research institutions in the Netherlands pay relatively less attention to artificial intelligence (AI) than many other countries. This is the conclusion of new research from the Rathenau Institute. The European Union also appears to be lagging behind economic powers such as China and the United States in research into artificial intelligence.

This is worrying because these countries also have huge companies like Google and Alibaba that do a lot of research in the field of AI. Europe needs to rely more on research conducted in universities.

The latest technology cannot do without artificial intelligence. This technology is based on good research. In recent years, about 70,000 people around the world have participated in research on artificial intelligence. About 1,000 of them worked in the Netherlands for a short or longer period. Despite the fact that Dutch scientists are increasingly publishing about artificial intelligence, the topic still occupies a modest place in the total Dutch research. Of all the scientific publications published between 2013 and 2018, 1.3 percent were about artificial intelligence in the European Union it was 1.8 percent, worldwide it was 2.3 percent and in countries like India and Iran it was about four percent.

Robots and self-driving cars

The publication shows that Dutch research is generally of a high standard. On average, other scholars cite it twice the global average. Most Dutch AI research is conducted at the Universities of Delft, Amsterdam (UvA), Nijmegen, Eindhoven and Twente.

AI researchers at Dutch universities, more than their colleagues in many other countries, work in tandem with the business community. Among the various areas of research within artificial intelligence, research into planning and decision-making processes receives the most attention in the Netherlands. This includes systems capable of making independent decisions. This is shaped, for example, by robots and self-driving cars.

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In the search for artificial intelligence, Europe is developing more slowly than China and the United States. Chinese universities and research institutes have doubled their scientific publications on artificial intelligence in three years. According to the most recent figures (for 2018), the country accounts for 29 percent of all publications appearing worldwide. In 2013, it was still 25 percent. At that time, China was almost on par with the European Union, which now supplies only nineteen percent of world production. This is the same as what happened in the United States, which in 2013 (16%) was still clearly lagging behind Europe.

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