July 15, 2024
Google launches €25M AI drive to ‘empower’ Europe’s workforce



Google has launched a €25mn training and skills programme to help Europe’s workforce “seize the opportunity of AI,” the tech giant announced today. 

The initiative is targeted at “vulnerable and underserved” communities, who Google said risk getting left behind as the use of AI in the workplace skyrockets — a trend that is expected to continue.

Google said it had opened applications for social enterprises and nonprofits that could help reach those most likely to benefit from training. 

Selected organisations will receive “bespoke and facilitated” training on foundational AI.  

These bodies will also receive cash grants for critical wraparound support, such as childcare or compensation for pay, to remove the barrier to learning, said Google. 

“AI has enormous potential to transform the world for the better — yet research shows that the benefits of AI could exacerbate existing inequalities,” commented Adrian Brown, executive director of the London-based Centre for Public Impact, which is running the nonprofit scheme alongside Google. 

“This new program will help people across Europe develop their knowledge, skills and confidence around AI, ensuring that no one is left behind,” he said. 

Google will also run a series of “growth academies” to support startups using AI to solve challenges in health, education, and cybersecurity. Applications for the Growth Academy: AI for Health are now open — but don’t worry, the firm said it won’t take a stake in your company if you win funding. 

Finally, Google said it will expand its AI foundational courses to 18 languages. 

Google’s latest AI drive in Europe follows “Grow with Google,” launched back in 2015, which offered free training to help address the EU’s digital skills gap. Google claims to have upskilled over 12 million people since that scheme began. 

In other news, last month, Google announced it would invest $1bn to build a data centre in north London, as it moves to meet growing demand for internet services in the region.



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