Statistician researching AI-powered driverless car applications

An academic at Lancaster University has been given a grant to conduct ground-breaking Artificial Intelligence research aimed at revolutionising the use of AI in autonomous vehicles and cybersecurity.

Dr Christopher Nemeth (pictured) will carry out the work as part of a prestigious Turing AI Acceleration Fellowship.

The University says that, as technology advances, there is a growing need to collect vast quantities of data easily and inexpensively, and to use these data to deliver significant benefits across a wide range of applications such as energy consumption and public health.

It explains that a key challenge in AI research is to extract meaningful value from these data sources to make decisions that can be trusted and understood to improve the way society functions and that Dr Nemeth, of the Department of Mathematics and Statistics , aims to develop an ‘end-to-end framework’, from data collection to decision-making, that naturally accounts for data, modelling and decision uncertainties to provide transparent and interpretable decision-making tools with a wide range of uses.

“This research will develop new AI-powered tools capable of automatically gleaning deeper insights from complex data,” Dr Nemeth said. “Our research will lead to new ways of assessing the safety of driverless vehicles for UK roads, as well as developing new AI systems to enhance the UK’s cybersecurity.

“This Turing AI Fellowship provides a unique opportunity for our research team to collaborate closely with key strategic partners, including GCHQ and the Transport Research Laboratory, and will help support the UK’s leading position in AI development.”

The research programme, called Probabilistic Algorithms for Scalable and Computable Approaches to Learning (PASCAL) offers new ways of unlocking the tremendous potential for innovation and technological development in AI. This can be achieved through the development of probabilistic algorithms to provide deep and critical insight into the increasingly large and complex data sources that fuel our everyday lives.

This research will be undertaken in collaboration with project partners: TRL, the Heilbronn Institute of Mathematical Research, GCHQ, the University of Washington and engagement with the Alan Turing Institute.

Funded with £20 million of taxpayers’ money, the prestigious Turing AI Acceleration Fellowships will give fifteen of the UK’s top AI researchers the resources to work with academia and industry to drive forward their ground-breaking research and technologies and bring their innovations to the real world, from speeding up medical diagnoses to increasing workplace productivity. These pioneering projects could enable the UK to meet some of its most pressing challenges such as reducing carbon emissions, while helping to transform industries across the UK economy, including healthcare, energy and transport.

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