Recommended Listening: Alberta "incredibly well-positioned" for AI commercialization

Alberta has seen significant success in unlocking the economic potential of artificial intelligence. And the pace of commercialization is increasing rapidly.

"Commercialization is happening now," Amii's VP of Product, Stephanie Enders told Karen Unland, host of Taproot's Bloom podcast, earlier this week.

She was responding to concerns from some who argue that Canada's approach to AI development is too focused on research, ignoring the application and commercialization side of the equation.

Enders believes that while there has been a lot of success with practical applications of AI, that progress might not be known to the wider public. Commercialization is core to the second phase of the county's Pan-Canadian AI Strategy, which Amii is a part of.

While much of the criticism of Canada's commercialization efforts has focused on a lack of patents and IP produced, Enders says that is only one part of the formula. Aspects like knowledge transfer and talent recruitment are just as important. Those are areas where Amii has seen great success over the past few years. Students who previously studied artificial intelligence in Alberta largely left for other regions or stayed in academia. Now, far more are remaining to work within industry or start their own companies.

She also says companies in Alberta are much more eager to adopt AI and machine learning into their organizations.

"There really is a temperature change, all the way from startups to multinationals, understanding that we have to grab hold of this technology in order to be successful in the future."

Enders gave more details into several commercialization partnerships Amii has announced recently, including Telus and New Harvest.

To listen to the full interview, including a discussion about AI ethics and the growing awareness of the potential of AI, listen to the full episode.

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