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  • Sheryll Mericido

Saudi-British AI Roundtable held in Riyadh, fostering collaboration and innovation

Riyadh, October 25, 2023, The inaugural Saudi-British Artificial Intelligence Roundtable, jointly organized by the Saudi Authority for Data and Artificial Intelligence (SDAIA), King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), and the British embassy, convened at the SDAIA headquarters in Riyadh. The participants included Dr. Yaser Al-Onaizan, Deputy General Supervisor of the National Center for Artificial Intelligence (NCAI), Neil Crompton, the British Ambassador to the Kingdom, and senior representatives from academia and the private sector of both nations.

The roundtable explored various facets of artificial intelligence (AI), delving into issues of ethics, policy, and regulation. It emphasized the shared pro-innovation stance of Saudi Arabia and the United Kingdom, strategies to leverage AI, and approaches to address challenges related to privacy, public trust, transparency, and regulatory sandboxes. Furthermore, discussions revolved around how the two nations' representatives handle the application of AI ethics.

The meeting showcased research projects at KAUST that align with initiatives in the United Kingdom, paving the way for enhanced collaboration between the two countries in the field of AI.

This event marked the beginning of a series of engagements, with Saudi Arabia set to participate in the first Artificial Intelligence Safety Summit to be held in the UK at Bletchley Park on November 1 and 2. Bletchley Park holds historical significance as the birthplace of modern computing.

In a significant move, the Council of Ministers granted approval for the establishment of the International Center of AI Research and Ethics in Riyadh last July. SDAIA also unveiled the AI Ethics Principles during its Global AI Summit's second edition, which was held in Riyadh, further underlining the kingdom's commitment to the ethical advancement of AI.

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