Alberta to invest $100 million in artificial intelligence

Notley says funds are on top of $50 million for 3,000 new high-tech post-secondary training spots.

Alberta Premier Rachel Notley speaks to cabinet members in Edmonton on December 3, 2018. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson)

The Alberta government plans to spend $100 million over five years to attract investment from artificial intelligence-focused tech companies.

The money will go to Alberta Innovates, the province’s research development agency, and the non-profit Alberta Machine Intelligence Institute.

READ MORE: Premier Rachel Notley says Alberta to ease oil production cuts

Some of the initial funds will go toward helping Edmonton-based Amii expand into a new office in Calgary.

Premier Rachel Notley says the spending is in addition to the $50 million announced last spring for 3,000 new high-tech post-secondary training spots.

She says it’s part of an effort to diversify the provincial economy beyond oil and gas extraction.

Notley says her government is also planning a major marketing campaign to show that Alberta can be a global hub for artificial intelligence technology.

“Without investment, we are at a significant risk of losing our competitive advantage. Without a long-term commitment and a plan for a diversified future, Alberta could easily be bypassed by the Ontarios and the Quebecs of the world, that’s not a thing we want to see happen,” Notley said in Calgary Wednesday.

“We know that those governments have been actively seeking investment for Toronto and Montreal. And to the south, they are also actively seeking investment in the Silicon Valley, MIT and Stanford. Companies will invest in places where growth is possible and success is rewarded.”

Laura Kilcrease, CEO of Alberta Innovates, said artificial intelligence can help lead to better decision making, problem solving and efficiency in a variety of sectors, including health care, transport and agriculture.

“Our future is like the old days of electricity over a century ago. No one quite knew what to do with it and what can we do without it today,” she said.

“No one quite knows what to do completely with artificial intelligence and I challenge you — soon you won’t know what to do without it.”

The Canadian Press

Just Posted

Spring scenes from PALS Park

Excitement for warmer weather is building with the coming onset of May

Easter family fun in Castor!

PALS Park was a hub of activity on April 20th

Alberta’s 47 legislature newbies meet under the dome for orientation day

Most new members are with the United Conservatives, who won a majority government

The Beaverdome Renovations are complete, and the project came in nearly on budget

The renovation was brought before council one more time during the April 8th meeting

Lending a helping hand

Presentation to the Castor Foodbank was made on April 17th

VIDEO: Police dog in Oregon struck by 200 porcupine quills during pursuit

The German shepherd had to be sedated and was in treatment for more than two hours

Oil and gas company confirms death of one of its employees in Yoho avalanche

Dana Coffield died when he was skiing in the Rocky Mountains

Cenovus CEO estimates production curtailments will deliver billions to taxpayers

The curtailment program started Jan. 1 was designed to keep 325,000 barrels per day off the market

Robbery in Leduc County estimated at $40,000

Leduc RCMP investigate break and enter and theft of firearms

Singh says childhood abuse steeled him for scrutiny and stress of politics

He recounts the assaults for the first time in his book Love & Courage

Despite five extra weeks’ parental leave in Canada, dads still face stigma: survey

One reason people said dads don’t need leave is because they can just bond with their kids at weekend

Calgary’s public school board responds to Syrian child’s suicide after bullying

Amal Alshteiwi, a newcomer to Canada from Syria, took her own life several weeks ago

Child, 11, accidentally shot in the chest at Alberta religious colony

Child taken from Hutterite colony to nearby hospital

Woman in critical condition after motorcycle crash on Edmonton highway

Police say both women were thrown from the bike, and the van continued forward, hitting a Nissan Altima

Most Read