A $20 million fund for AI research worldwide is coming from Google’s philanthropic arm. Problems such as bias in AI models and security risks surrounding LLMs need to be addressed by academics. Money comes from the so-called Digital Futures Project.
Google.org director Brigitte Hoyer Gosselink identifies these challenges and also touches on what she believes are the opportunities for AI. “AI has the potential to make our lives easier and address some of society’s most complex challenges — like preventing disease, making cities work better and predicting natural disasters. But it also raises questions about fairness, bias, misinformation, security and the future of work.”
In other words, the opportunities are enormous, but the expertise is not yet where it should be. Academic institutions and think tanks can apply to Google.org, but there are already recipients from the Digital Futures Project. Nonprofits such as the Aspen Institute and SeedAI have already been greenlit for investment.
The topic of “Responsible AI” is high on the minds of Google and other big tech companies. For example, Microsoft has highlighted how it plans to shape best practices for ethically based AI applications. Google has a similar page. In addition, during Google Cloud Next, the company explained how it wants to use an expanded Vertex AI to enable companies to leverage AI while keeping data secure.