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NATO Launches Strategic AI Initiative for Horizon scanning

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NATO Launches Strategic AI Initiative for Horizon scanning

3 min read 8 Jul Download text

The NATO Science and Technology Organization (STO) and the NATO Communications and Information Agency (NCI Agency) launched a strategic AI initiative on Horizon Scanning to better understand its military implications. Horizon Scanning is a method to perform an expansive scientific and technological analysis on specific subjects.

Horizon scanning

The two NATO entities kicked off the initiative with a workshop at the Agency's premises in The Hague, Netherlands. NATO Chief Scientist Dr Bryan Wells and NCI Agency General Manager Ludwig Decamps participated in the event, along with more than 80 AI experts from allied and partner country defence research institutes, the defence industry and academia.

"AI is one of the key emerging and disruptive technologies identified by NATO as essential to maintaining its technological edge. By working together, the STO and the NCI Agency can bring together global experts to ensure that the very best scientific expertise is available to advise NATO and its Allies and Partners on the latest scientific trends in this field. Last week's conferences also confirm the importance of The Hague as a global hub to gain greater insight into all issues related to AI."

Dr Bryan Wells, NATO Chief Scientist
von Kármán

NCI Agency

Horizon Scanning is a method of conducting a comprehensive scientific and technological assessment on a given topic. The NATO Strategic Initiative on Horizon Scanning uses the fundamental principle of Theodore von Kármán to bring armed forces and scientific personnel closer together in order to increase collective knowledge and understanding. Dr Theodore von Kármán is considered one of the greatest aeronautical scientists of the 20th century and was the first president of one of the STO's predecessors.

The AI experts also visited the NCI Agency's Data Science and AI Labs in The Hague for demonstrations of how AI can be trained on NATO data to address the Alliance's challenges. They also discussed practical aspects of AI development in defence environments with the Agency's data scientists and AI engineers.

"The NCI Agency has always contributed to NATO's technology lead. The NCI Agency is proud to be a partner in this important activity and to share our expertise in applying AI and data science to NATO challenges"

The Hague 

The City of the Hague was an important partner in the development of AI as well. "The Hague recognizes the importance of game-changing technologies such as AI, and the necessity to develop this in a responsible way", said Saskia Bruines, Deputy Mayor of the Hague.

Furthermore, the city was the host of the Den Haag Conference on Responsible AI in the Peace Palace, with a focus on peace, law and security last week. The goal of this conference was the contribution to the future agenda for responsible and humane AI in an open dialogue.

NATO Communications and Information Agency

Read more about The NATO Science and Technology Organization (STO) and the NATO Communications and Information Agency (NCI Agency)

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