The Alan Turing Institute, the national institute for artificial intelligence and data science, is at the heart of the business-led Prosperity Partnerships announced today in support of the government’s ambitious new Innovation Strategy.

A number of partnerships are being supported with an investment of almost £60 million by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), part of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), businesses and universities. Two of these innovative projects - one using AI in air traffic control systems and the other delivering trustworthy data driven AI decision-making approaches in the finance sector - will see the Turing working with well-established partners and a number of affiliate organisations.

The Alan Turing Institute Director, Adrian Smith, said “I’m delighted to see these innovative projects being supported through the Prosperity Partnerships. The two projects are incredibly different but will build on the Institute’s existing partnerships and our key role in bringing together business and academia to enable emerging new technologies to drive improvements to wider society and the economy.”

NATS and The Alan Turing Institute

The vision of the first research project, named “Project Bluebird: An AI system for air traffic control,” is to deliver the world’s first AI system to control airspace in live trials, working with air traffic controllers to help manage the complexities of their role. This system utilises digital twinning and machine learning technologies and includes tools and methods that promote safe and trustworthy use of AI. The Alan Turing Institute and NATS have been working together since 2018, applying data science to the complex airspace in the UK, highlighting a fundamental and specific need to build knowledge of how AI can add value to air traffic management. Such tools will become more important with growing use of uncrewed aircraft and airspace playing a crucial role in delivering aviation’s commitment to net zero emissions by 2050.

Explore the project here.

HSBC and The Alan Turing Institute

The project will see The Turing, HSBC, and other organisations in the financial sector, developing a Framework for responsible adoption of Artificial Intelligence in the financial services industry (FAIR).  It will embark on a systematic programme of industrially-driven interdisciplinary research, building on the strength of the existing Turing-HSBC partnership.  

This Prosperity Partnership project aims to develop the trustworthy, data-driven AI decision-making approaches that are needed for the wider adoption of these technologies in the financial and professional services sector, which employs 2.2 million people and has an estimated total value of £190 billion.  It aims to address challenges such as how to increase the accuracy of predictive models without compromising privacy and security of customers, or improving transparency without leaving systems open to external threats.   The project intends to outline how the finance sector can make the transformational shift to the greater use of AI technologies, ensuring they have fairness, security and accountability at their heart, while being robust and aware of privacy.  

The partnership also includes affiliate organisations and will embark on a systematic programme of industrially- driven interdisciplinary research, building on the strength of the existing Turing-HSBC partnership.  

Explore the project here.