Mobile telecom equipment maker Ericsson and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) have partnered to set up a digital skill learning programme with specific emphasis on scaling up artificial intelligence development for young people, the two entites said in a statement.
The initiative is focused on AI as it will help achieve UNESCO's fourth sustainable development goal, that of quality education. The technology has the potential to increase access, automate process, curate learning and improve outcomes in education, said the statement.
“At Ericsson, we believe that building strong and viable partnerships is key to meeting the global Sustainable Development Goals. This public-private partnership focusing on skill development for Artificial Intelligence is an excellent example of what can be achieved when leaders work together to promote knowledge sharing and cooperation," said Heather Johnson, vice president for sustainability and corporate responsibility, Ericsson, in the statement.
Under the new AI for youth initiative, the partners will develop and manage a repository of AI and other key digital skill training courses that will be available globally. They will build capacities of master trainers from selected countries around the globe with advanced knowledge of AI skill development and support master trainers to mobilise AI hub centres and hackathons to train young people on developing AI applications.
“At UNESCO we think that artificial intelligence is to be put at the service of sustainable development, a whole set of new education and training programmes has to emerge to equip youth with skills required to live and work in artificial intelligence era. Our partnership with Ericsson is critical to advance this agenda,” said Borhene Chakroun, director of the policies and lifelong learning division at UNESCO.
The initiative was launched at Mobile Learning Week 2019, UNESCO’s flagship education conference held at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris from March 4 to 8. The event brings together education and technology experts from around the world with focus on AI and sustainable development. As part of the event, UNESCO member states were invited to join the initiative and support the scaling up of AI skill development for young people.
Last month, Ericsson launched enhanced functionalities and new solutions for Internet of Things with diverse use cases across verticals including automotive, manufacturing, and utilities.
In December 2018, Ericsson opened up an AI research facility in Bengaluru to focus on research and development in artificial intelligence and automation.