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Insight's Prof Barry Smyth and his team win inaugural AI research grant from Accenture

Insight's Prof Barry Smyth and his team in UCD have won the inaugural Accenture Technology Labs University Grant on Artificial Intelligence. The announcement was made earlier today and full details were reported in Silicon Republic.

Accenture opens new specialised AI tech lab in Dublin

Gordon Hunt

Accenture’s shift towards the burgeoning world of artificial intelligence (AI) has just sped up a notch, with the creation of a new specialised R&D lab in Dublin. The company is also pouring a “significant portion” of its global R&D capabilities into the site.

Accenture’s “expanded R&D agenda” is part of a targeted plan to help its customers integrate intelligent systems, with Dublin central to the company’s global plans thanks to a centre of innovationannounced just last month.

The new AI tech lab announced today will be situated within that centre of innovation, which was created to tap into the local, and imported, talent pool – at the time of the centre of innovation launch, Accenture announced plans to hire 200 people to staff it.

Additionally, Accenture today has launched a grant for academic institutions looking into AI, awarding the inaugural grant to a research team at the Insight Centre for Data Analytics at UCD.

The winning team will explore the interface between humans and machines, using cognitive analysis to better understand how both can collaborate and interact effectively.

“Artificial intelligence will disrupt businesses and industries on a global scale, and we see this shift going well beyond deploying analytics, cognitive computing or machine learning systems in isolation,” says Paul Daugherty, Accenture’s chief technology officer.

Research from IDC found that the current $4.5bn value of the AI industry will more than double by 2019, no doubt inspiring these moves by companies like Accenture.

“We are investing early to drive more innovation at Accenture, recruit top talent in every location we operate in, and infuse more intelligence across our global business to help clients accelerate the integration of intelligence and automation to transform their businesses,” says Daugherty.