Stanford adds think tank to expand artificial intelligence work
- Stanford University will join the growing number of colleges investing in artificial intelligence (AI) research with its new Institute for Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence, an interdisciplinary effort that was announced Monday that crosses the university's seven schools and has the advisory support of Silicon Valley executives.
- The institute will focus on ways AI can help "improve the human condition" through areas such as research, policy and education. Partners include industry, government and nongovernmental organizations.
- The university hopes to raise more than $1 billion for the think tank, with the funds used to support research and host academic events as well as to purchase data processing power and draw talent, The Washington Post reported.
Several other colleges and universities have been making major investments in hubs and centers designed to bridge the gap between academia and industry across disciplines in growing fields such as AI and data science.
Last month, Georgetown University used a $55 million grant to develop its Center for Security and Emerging Technology. The think tank will combine research on AI and advanced computing with the Washington, D.C.-based university's focus on national security policy.
Other recent announcements include the University of Virginia's School of Data Science. Funded with a private $120 million donation, the school will set up satellite centers in the university's other schools to foster collaboration across fields. And the Massachusetts Institute of Technology made headlines last fall with its announcement of an interdisciplinary computing college, for which half of the 50 faculty positions created will be split with other departments.
MIT is also among 21 colleges and systems forming the new Public Interest Technology University Network, another effort to connect public policy and technology development. Its goal is to grow the emerging field of public-interest technology — where observers note initiatives so far exist mostly at the student-group level — through interdisciplinary education, experiential learning and data-sharing. Other members include Arizona State University and the City University of New York.