AIML receives state government funding boost

A group of five people smile at the announcement of funding

Rising Pictures' Tony Clark and The Hon Peter Malinauskas MP Premier of South Australia (centre) with Australian Institute of Machine Learning staff and students at the funding announcement.

The University of Adelaide’s Australian Institute for Machine Learning (AIML) has received $6 million from the state government to strengthen its work and expand domestic artificial intelligence (AI) capability.

AIML, based at Lot Fourteen, was formed in early 2018 and was Australia’s first institute dedicated to research in machine learning.

With more than 200 members, AIML members are globally recognised for research excellence in AI and machine learning and have collaborated with world-leading companies to develop high-tech solutions to benefit society.

This new funding will enable AIML to expand the industrial AI program by supporting small and medium enterprises (SME) develop AI-enabled products and services, and to recruit new top talent into the state.

Funding will also be used to establish four international exchange PhD scholarships and 16 honours/masters degree scholarships for South Australian students.

The University of Adelaide’s Professor Simon Lucey, Director, AIML said Adelaide is a very attractive choice for students seeking to build a career in the global AI industry.

“It’s been such a breathtaking year for AI, and South Australia is one of the top global places for AI activity,” said Professor Lucey.

“Since AIML was established six years ago, we’ve worked with more than 35 businesses and numerous government entities to use AI to create new products and improve productivity.

“Our extended program will not only continue that important work for South Australia, we’re now expanding it with new domestic student scholarships and international exchange opportunities with some of the world’s top AI academic and industry players.”

AIML staff and students with a robotic dog

PhD student Zerui Li, University of Adelaide Professor Simon Lucey, Director, Australian Institute of Machine Learning, PhD student Sofia McLeod and Associate Professor Qi Wu with a robotic dog programmed by the AIML team.

Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) Professor Anton Middelberg welcomed the extra funding from the state government.

“The University of Adelaide undertakes exceptional and transformative research in AI, and this funding creates a new opportunity to help shape South Australia’s future,” he said.

“This investment allows us to scale transformative work, attract the brightest minds in AI to the University of Adelaide and the AIML, and strengthen our state’s position as a leader in the technology.

"This additional investment into AIML by the SA Government and the University of Adelaide will also position the new Adelaide University  to be at the forefront of AI research nationally, engaging in positive partnerships with local industry and providing exciting research career opportunities for South Australians in this emerging and vibrant growth sector."

The Hon Peter Malinauskas MP Premier of South Australia said AI research in South Australia contributed to more than 20 per cent of the nation’s AI research in 2021.

We’re home to nationally recognised AI companies and well known for punching above our weight in AI research – contributing more than 20 per cent of the nation’s AI research in 2021, despite making up only seven per cent of Australia’s population,” he said.    "

"Strengthening our industrial AI capability will be key to enhancing efficiency, productivity and automation, and will help South Australia to become a world-leading digital economy. 

The four PhD international exchange scholarships will be prioritised to AUKUS partner universities, while the support for AIML’s research and engineering team is expected to support five SA Government projects and up to 50 industry projects.”


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