Data science and artificial intelligence research relies on a specific set of technical skills and competencies. These include algorithms, systems, mathematical methods and modelling, machine learning and statistics, software engineering, and computer science, as well as engineering, the social sciences, ethics, and design.
The significant industry, government, and academic demand for these skills creates a supply problem, with the UK facing a major skills gap which could inhibit the anticipated potential of data science and AI for our economy and society.
We are committed to taking a leading role in training the next generation of leaders in these sciences, supporting the UK to realise its industrial ambitions. We will also upskill the professional community, developing a programme of executive education and upskilling government and industry through our research programmes and partners.
In our first two years we have recruited more than 75 of the brightest and best students to our doctoral studentship schemes from over 450 applicants.
As well as offering full-time doctoral placements to 35 students, more than 40 students have joined the Turing through our unique enrichment scheme, which enables those already undertaking PhDs to spend a year or less at the Turing boosting their skills in data science. Turing PhDs are fully-funded and we work with university partners to ensure we can attract the best international students to the UK. We share our data science talks, delivered by experts from our partner and university network, with the world via YouTube, a valued academic resource with more than 600,000 views to date.
We are committed to ensuring that all Turing students go on to successful data science careers in academia, business and government.
Turing Research Fellows are independent researchers, employed by one of the Turing's partner universities and based at the Institute. They were recruited following success in an internationally competitive process. The objective of Turing Research Fellows is to develop a personal research programme at the Turing to conduct outstanding, creative and innovative research in data science and artificial intelligence, develop internationally significant outcomes, and play a prominent role in advancing the research programmes of the Institute and its partners, acting as project leaders.
We have a national responsibility to help to increase the talent pipeline, and to attract more young people to a career in data science and artificial intelligence.
In our first two years of operations our internship scheme has seen 40+ post-graduates to date spend their summer at the Turing, working on data science problems.
We will prioritise working with schools and bringing young learners into the Turing through internships and work placements. We are also working with learned organisations, government and through the Data Skills Taskforce to drive the agenda for data skills training at a national level.
There is a demand at a high-level in organisations for training and informing employees in critical skills in data and AI. This falls into two categories; courses for executives providing a strategic perspective of data science across sectors, and state of the art and best practice workshops.
Following a series of successful pilots, we will run training sessions for industry, public sector, and third sector participants, in important practical skills and the latest scientific developments in data ethics, machine learning, and artificial intelligence.