Artificial Intelligence AIPA Cluster

Bringing together diverse areas of expertise in the development and use of AI

  • 21 April 2020
  • 5 min read
The University of Portsmouth’s Artificial Intelligence and its Practical Applications (AIPA) Cluster brings together diverse areas of expertise in the development and use of AI from across the University.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) has long been an active and exciting branch of research. Now more than ever, AI is in the spotlight as a technology that is about to make a significant impact on all aspects of life.

AI’s practical applications touch us all on a daily basis, and its effects spread across a whole range of societal and industrial sectors. From health and wellbeing to entertainment, from business and logistics to manufacturing and engineering, recent and ongoing advancements in the field mean that businesses and industries are increasingly looking at the ways that AI research can be used to innovate the workplace and society in general.

The launching of the Cluster has come at an exciting time for AI and its development and application. The UK Government’s Industrial Strategy sets out four grand challenges (aimed at putting the UK at the forefront of the industries of the future), the first of which places the UK firmly in the vanguard of the AI and data revolution.

The work carried out at the University of Portsmouth on AI fundamentals lends itself well to the Government’s strategy, but there is also scope for the development and application of AI to transform business models across a variety of sectors and industries.

The Industrial Strategy’s three other grand challenges (tackling the prospect of an ageing population, the desire for UK industry to shift towards clean growth, and the future of mobility) are all likely to be increasingly influenced by the developments in AI. This means that the AIPA Cluster is strategically well-placed to support cross-disciplinary collaboration, as well as encouraging external projects and partnerships, thereby stimulating economic growth within the wider community.

Expertise in AI at the University is dispersed among areas where it can make a positive impact, from business to health and from engineering to the arts. I am excited about the AIPA cluster as it brings together those practical perspectives and our fundamental AI research specialisms in a coordinated manner. AIPA comprises more than 50 academics across the disciplines. The diffuse nature of the University’s expertise could have been a weakness, but AIPA turns it into a strength.

Professor Adrian Hopgood, Theme Director, Future & Emerging Technologies

The AIPA Cluster has been set up with two key aims in mind: the development of tools and the development of applications.

Development of AI tools: 

  • knowledge-based intelligence
  • computational intelligence
  • machine learning
  • big data
  • agents
  • hybrids

Development of AI applications for: 

  • health and wellbeing, including the ageing population
  • sustainability and the environment, including transport and logistics
  • security and risk, including ethical considerations
  • democratic citizenship, including education, governance, and management
  • future and emerging technologies, including physics & cosmology

By bringing together such a spectrum of experience and expertise in the development and use of AI, the Cluster helps to provide coherence and coordination to the University’s research and innovation objectives. It helps to build cross-disciplinary linkages, facilitate external partnerships, and attract AI-related funding.

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