Ahead of marking ten years since its inception, The Data Lab, Scotland’s innovation centre for data and AI, has published an impact report outlining the benefits it has brought to both the Scottish economy and job creation.
The report, available on the centre’s website, outlines how The Data Lab has been central to generating £200m in additional revenue for the data and AI sector in Scotland, as well as creating and safeguarding more than 1,350 jobs.
Through the partnerships cultivated by the centre over the last decade, more than 145 projects have been collaborated on. This has included Scottish universities and colleges across the length and breadth of Scotland, covering projects in Shetland, Inverness, Dundee and across the central belt.
The Data Lab has also secured £90m in funding with Scottish, UK, and EU consortia for projects related to health, the built environment, and transport.
Such projects have included the Smart Manufacturing Data Hub led by Ulster University, as well as working with NHS Highland, to speed up bowel cancer diagnostics using AI-assisted colon capsule endoscopy.
Commenting on the report Brian Hills, CEO of The Data Lab, said: “The landscape of data and AI has completely changed over the last decade, leading to a greater understanding and appreciation of this technology. In the last 12 months alone, AI has become a technology no one can ignore and something that is set to completely revolutionise how organisations operate.
“However, embracing the use of data and AI requires skill, and it is reassuring that so many people recognise this. The fact that 80,000 people have registered for online courses created or funded by The Data Lab – with attendees coming from all levels within an organisation – is recognition of the huge desire to increase adoption of data and AI. Supporting so many people in their learning journey is an honour.”
As part of creating a thriving, connected society powered by data and AI, the innovation centre has also established a flourishing data and AI community which has grown to more than 3,500 members from across 60 countries since it was established in 2021.
Brian Hills added: “Growing a thriving network of individuals to collaborate, network, engage and learn at various stages of their career is no mean feat, yet we are seeing people come together from all over the world to learn from each other. For years, we have recognised the value AI will bring to organisations. However, we also have seen an increasing demand for people to come together and exchange ideas within our community.
“With more people continuing to join the community each month as they recognise its value and the opportunity to connect with peers, we are proud of the journey of The Data Lab Community to date and can’t wait to see how this continues to evolve over the coming years. Ultimately, our vision is to create the world’s most impactful data community.”