Google Puts Up $25 Million For AI Research To Help Humanity, Earth

Google is creating a $25 million fund for artificial intelligence research around the world, to address social and economic problems. Organizations chosen by the Mountain View digital advertising giant will receive not only financial assistance but help from Google AI experts and computing resources, said Jacquelline Fuller, president of Google’s charity arm, Google.org. The Grants for the “Google AI Impact Challenge” are expected to range from about $500,000 to $2 million, Fuller said.

“We’re optimistic that AI can accelerate research and engineering efforts to tackle the world’s biggest humanitarian, environmental and social problems. We want to work with organizations and developers globally.”

Google is inviting applications from nonprofits, social enterprises, and research institutions. For-profit companies can apply, but only for projects with a charitable purpose, Google said.

The initiative was announced at a Google “AI for Social Good” event in Sunnyvale recently, which also showcased current AI projects, including one that analyzes recorded whale songs to predict the animals’ movements, which could help reduce collisions between whales and boats, said Jay Yagnik, a Google vice-president and engineering fellow.

For the “Impact Challenge” grants, Google has given itself a short window for selecting winners—it intends to announce the grants at its next “I/O” developers conference in the spring, Fuller said. The application period runs from now until January 22.

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