Recommendations for development of Artificial general intelligence in India

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Source: This article Recommendations for development of Artificial general intelligence in India has been created based on the article “Artificial general intelligence: It could reboot India’s prospects”, published in Live Mint on 11th June 2024.

UPSC Syllabus Topic: GS Paper 3 – Science and Technology – S&T effects on everyday life

News: Artificial General Intelligence (AGI) is poised to revolutionize various sectors and potentially alter the global balance of power. This technology promises vast benefits but also poses significant risks.

Historically, technological advancements have been key to global dominance. The British Empire leveraged naval technology and the industrial revolution to establish its supremacy. Similarly, control over AGI could dictate future global power dynamics.

In 2017, Russian President Vladimir Putin highlighted the transformative potential of AI, predicting that the leader in AI technology would rule the world.

In March 2024, the Indian Cabinet approved the ‘India AI Mission’ with a funding of over ₹10,000 crore across five years. This initiative aims to develop AI infrastructure accessible to startups, academia, and industry, positioning India as a significant player in the global AI race.

What is Artificial General Intelligence (AGI)?

AGI refers to an AI system that can match or surpass human cognitive abilities to understand, learn, and apply knowledge across a wide range of tasks. It can reason, learn from experience, and solve novel problems.

AGI, unlike current AI systems which are designed for specific tasks, will possess general intelligence comparable to human cognitive abilities.

AGI can itself extend its abilities to solve any problem, including those it has not been specifically programmed for.

Read More – Artificial General Intelligence

Applications of AGI

In healthcare, AGI could monitor health metrics in real-time, predict potential issues, and provide customized care.

In urban management, it could optimize energy use and minimize waste.

AGI could also address global challenges like climate change through advanced predictive modelling.

What are the risks and challenges of AGI?

The development of AGI carries risks, including misuse in surveillance, autonomous weaponry, and significant economic disruptions.

AGI could radically transform job markets and economic structures.

Human nature tends to under-prepare for rare but catastrophic risks, which are not immediate. This tendency is known as the availability heuristic. Policymakers must proactively safeguard against AGI’s potential threats.

What should India do to prepare for AGI Race?

Dedicated AI Department: India should establish a central authority for coordinating AI-related activities, akin to the urgency once applied to nuclear capabilities and space research. This department should set standards, guidelines, and drive AI policies aligned with national interests.

Data Democratization: To stimulate AI development, India should liberate and democratize access to vast datasets across public and private sectors. This approach will encourage robust AI models tailored to India’s unique demographic and socio-economic landscape.

Strategic AI Ecosystem: Focus on developing an AI ecosystem for defense, drone technology, and cybersecurity. Support the creation of companies in these fields, similar to the US government’s backing of Palantir and Israel’s support of Elbit Systems.

AI Skilling Initiative: Launch a comprehensive initiative to train 50 million people in AI usage skills, with a focus on data literacy, AI ethics, and applications in various sectors. Additionally, it should aim to train 1 million individuals in advanced AI development skills.

Educational Partnerships: Forge partnerships with universities and technical institutes to integrate AI-focused curricula, launch specialized degree programs, and promote continuing education. Collaborate with online platforms to provide scalable access to courses and industry for practical training.

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