United Kingdom AI Strategy

AI Sector Deal (2018)

Overview of the strategy

The United Kingdom’s strategy has 5 areas of focus:

1. Investment

  • Raise total R&D investment in AI technologies to 2.4% of GDP by 2027
  • Invest up to £20 million in the application of AI in the services sector 

2. Education

  • Develop a prestigious global Turing Fellowship program to both attract and retain the best research talent in AI 
  • Build towards an additional 200 doctoral studentships in AI by 2020-2021
  • Invest £406m in skills like math, digital, and technical education and support 8,000 computer science teachers

3. Infrastructure

  • Publish more high-quality public data in an open, easily findable, and reusable format 
  • Provide legal certainty over the sharing and use of data
  • Work with major stakeholders to identify barriers to sharing data
  • Explore frameworks like ‘data trusts’ for mechanisms to share data
  • Invest over £1 billion to develop 5G 

4. Business environment

  • Establish a new Office for Artificial Intelligence to work with the AI Council to create and deliver the AI strategy 
  • Establish a new £2.5bn Investment Fund incubated in the British Business Bank

5. Places

  • Invest £21 million to support regional tech companies and startups
  • Invest over £1bn in digital infrastructure 

Data governance in the strategy

  • Does the AI plan mention data governance?


  • Does the AI plan discuss open public data?

Yes; the strategy suggests publishing more high-quality public data in an open, easily findable, and reusable format.

  • Does the AI plan discuss proprietary data?

Yes; the strategy acknowledges that some of the most important datasets contain commercially sensitive information and that data trusts can be used to address this issue.  

  • Does the AI plan discuss personal data?

Yes; data trusts are also suggested as a possible solution to dealing with privacy issues.

  • Does the AI plan discuss the mixing of data (hybrid)?

No; the strategy does not explicitly address the mixing of data but does suggest the use of data trusts to increase the sharing of different datasets.

  • Has the government consulted with the public on its AI strategy?

No; however, the United Kingdom has had a public consultation on data governance. The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport have also conducted a public consultation on the use of smart data.