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Hamdan bin Mohammed: UAE AI & Robotics Award for Good a major step in positioning UAE globally in advanced technologies

December 6, 2015

His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, Chairman of the Executive Council, and Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Dubai Museum of the Future Foundation, said the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, is focused on strengthening the position of the UAE in promising sectors through innovative initiatives, and described His Highness Sheikh Mohammed as a school that converts small ideas into big global initiatives.

“The UAE leadership aims to promote the economic model of the UAE, relying on minds and innovations rather than resources, through the launch of Higher Policy for Science, Technology and Innovation. We have to work hard in the coming period to strengthen the position of the UAE in promising technology sectors by attracting the best researchers and innovators as well as building strategic partnerships to develop our national talents,” His Highness Sheikh Hamdan said, adding that the UAE aims to enter the competitive race in these areas soon to make use of global leadership opportunities.

His Highness Sheikh Hamdan said that the first edition of the UAE AI & Robotics Award for Good has become a global platform of innovative ideas in this advanced field, which has been highlighted in global studies as an area of strategic importance for economies in view of its role in developing services in various sectors.

His Highness Sheikh Hamdan stated this as the Organizing Committee of the UAE AI & Robotics Award for Good announced the closing of the nomination period for the first edition of the event, which received 664 entries from 121 countries around the world.

His Excellency Mohammed Abdullah Al Gergawi, Vice Chairman of the Board of Trustees and Managing Director of the Dubai Museum of the Future Foundation and Chairperson of the Organising Committee of the UAE AI & Robotics Award for Good, said that the UAE is keen to adopt the latest advanced technologies to serve various segments of the society in all aspects that affect human lives.

HE Al Gergawi said: “The UAE government launched the UAE AI & Robotics Award for Good during the Government Summit last February to achieve the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to enhance the status of the UAE as a global leader in the field of science and technology by adopting the culture of innovation and taking advantage of available technologies to improve human life in several key areas.”

HE Al Gergawi added that this award is a new initiative from the UAE government aimed at making use of the economic and scientific opportunities in the robotics and artificial intelligence sector, which has emerged as a significant part of the developed economies in various sectors such as health, education and space industry.

Stressing the importance of cooperative efforts in this area, HE Al Gergawi urged government entities, private sector companies, research and academic institutions to join hands in promoting this annual award as a platform to honour the most important innovations and practical models in the next generation of services using robotics and artificial intelligence.

According to a recent study by McKinsey & Company, robotics and artificial intelligence sector will create an economic value of US$ 8 trillion by 2025, through its impact on different sectors. Deloitte global index on confidence of private ownership investors in 2015 (Deloitte Private Equity Confidence Survey 2015) also indicates that robotics and artificial intelligence sector is one of the top 10 sectors of global investment focus in the coming period.

The largest number of entries in the UAE AI & Robotics Award for Good was received in the Health category. The following is the percentage of entries received in various categories of the award: Civil Defence 5.16%, Construction 3.23%, Economy 0.56%, Education 15.48%, Environment 5.81%, Health 34.84%, Humanitarian Aid 3.87%, Logistics 1.29%, Social Services 8.39%, Tourism 1.94%, Transport 1.94% and Others 17.42%.

The maximum number of entries was received from the UAE, the US, Spain, the UK, Italy, India, Australia, Russia and Canada. Huge participation was also witnessed from international universities such as MIT, Stanford, The University of Sydney, Carnegie Mellon University, Berkeley University, UAE University and Khalifa University.

The names of 10 applicants from each category who will be eligible to participate in the semi-finals of the International and National competitions will be announced soon by the Organising Committee. At this stage, the selected participants will get the opportunity to demonstrate their ideas in front of the panel of judges, which includes high-profile experts and specialists in robotics and artificial intelligence technologies.

The UAE AI & Robotics Award for Good will honour winners from universities, companies, professionals and individuals in the International Competition with US$ 1 million in prize money while winners in the National Competition will receive AED 1 million. The awards in both the competitions will be handed over at a special ceremony in February 2016 before the 4th Government Summit.

The award aims to encourage research and applications of robotics and artificial intelligence to meet existing challenges in three key sectors: health, education and social services. It will also promote public awareness on the positive applications of these technologies, and help turn innovative ideas into reality to contribute to the development of government services provided by the UAE Government.

The award offers all citizens and residents in the UAE the opportunity to participate individually or collectively in the competition. The UAE AI & Robotics Award for Good represents a unique initiative for the development of government services, highlighting the application of innovations to employ the latest technologies in robotics and artificial intelligence. The International Competition of the award is open to individuals, teams or companies from all around the world.
The competing projects must comply with safety standards and include new technologies. They must also be highly reliable and provide added value.

Participants must suggest the type of services of their projects and additional technologies that will be required. For example, robotics can be used to help people with disabilities and health issues and encourage children in education. They can be useful in carrying out complicated and difficult tasks in areas such as firefighting, construction, social welfare and other areas of relevance to all members of the society.