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Full house of industry representatives and researchers at Al Goes Industry event

Finland has every possibility to be a leader in artificial intelligence.

Space had to be rearranged at the TUAS building at the Otaniemi campus of Aalto University on a rainy Tuesday morning to provide seats for all who showed up at the Al Goes Industry Digi Breakfast.

'We have representatives from around 70 companies here', said Academy Professor Samuel Kaski as he opened the most popular Digi Breakfast in the history of Aalto University. He is part of a steering group set up by the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, which wants to raise Finland to the top of the world in applications of artificial intelligence. The possibilities for achieving the goal are good.

'Finns are well-trained people and are eager to take new technology into use - if they feel that it is useful. Collaboration among universities, industry, and officials runs smoothly. The foundation for all of this is the long tradition of basic and applied research into artificial intelligence, which was launched here in Otaniemi by Teuvo Kohonen and Erkki Oja, said Ilona Lundström, head  of the Enterprise  and Innovation Department of the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment.

Pekka Sivonen, Executive Director of Digitalisation Strategies and Programmes at Tekes, the Finnish Funding Agency for Innovation, emphasised that whereas technology used to be primarily lipstick that put the final touches on a product, it is now a foundation of all business activities, and will be more so in the future. This applies especially to the platform economy, 95 percent of which is still in the hands of the Americans and the Chinese. However, Finland has every possibility to become a strong player in certain, carefully selected areas based on the country's strengths, such as the utilisation of health data, clean technologies, energy, and 5G.

'Fifth generation technology will mean an explosion in the number of possibilities in nearly all areas of industry', Sivonen said.

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