Under the UK government’s Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund, £3M will be made available to fund research projects to investigate how businesses can make best use of artificial intelligence in law and insurance, and additionally how consumer attitudes to AI are developing.
 
The projects backed by £3 million through the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund will focus on:
 
– Unlocking the Potential of AI for Law – how AI can be put to use in legal services and how to unlock its potential for good. The project will bring academics, lawyers, businesses and programmers together to develop the skills, training and codes of practice to deliver these benefits. The team will gather best practices across the world, outline data challenges, identify where and how AI can legitimately resolve disputes
 
– Technology Driven Change and Next Generation Insurance Value Chains – how AI can be applied to processes such as underwriting and claims processing, speeding up the process for customers. Working with business, the project will consider how AI technologies can transform delivery of insurance services and save consumers money
 
– Innovating Next Generation Services through Collaborative Design – to consider future uncertainties about the roll-out of new AI technologies in accounting and legal services by using insight, existing studies, developments in AI and service design, as well as analysing the potential barriers to AI-based business model innovation. The project will work with mid-size firms across law and accountancy
 
Business Secretary Greg Clark said: “The UK is the home of AI – from Alan Turing’s pioneering work to today’s growing use of AI throughout the economy. Artificial Intelligence is changing how we work, live and play. Through our modern Industrial Strategy, we want to build on our history of innovation to develop and deploy AI to create new opportunities and improve services across the whole economy.”
 
The Next-Generation Services Challenge seeks to take on the biggest industrial and societal challenges of our time. Services account for almost 80% of the UK economy, with financial and professional services alone employing around 2.2 million people and valued at £190 billion.
 
Today’s announcement builds on the government’s commitment to help drive forward innovation in the public sector and help it seize the opportunities of AI. The government recently announced £10 million of funding through the Regulator’s Pioneer Fund to support bodies to create a regulatory environment that gives businesses the confidence to use emerging technologies.
 
Stephen Browning, Challenge Director of Next Generation Services, UKRI, said:
 
AI and data driven technologies have the potential to transform our services sectors but in order for the UK to derive the biggest benefit, we will need to address not only the technical challenges that application of these technologies requires but also the human behavioural challenges that must be addressed. That is why I’m particularly excited by these 3 projects that bring multi-disciplinary research to bear, examining business model, behavioural and technical challenges with the use of AI and data and together addressing accountancy, insurance and legal services.
 
The 3 projects announced are as follows:
 
Professor J Armour, University of Oxford – Unlocking the Potential of AI for English Law
 
Professor A Milne, Loughborough University – Technology Driven Change and Next Generation Insurance Value Chains (TECHNGI)
 
Professor T Vorley, University of Sheffield – Innovating Next Generation Services through Collaborative Design