Kent’s first Artificial Intelligence for Business and Enterprise Conference to showcase region’s importance to expanding technology sector

The level of investment by business in Artificial Intelligence technology is expected to accelerate exponentially over the next years.

From risk detection and financial forecasts for the insurance and financial markets to speeding up diagnostics in healthcare, AI is no longer the next big thing – it’s already here.

This month, Kent’s first Artificial Intelligence for Business and Enterprise conference will be taking place at Canterbury Christ Church University.

It will be a day long exploration of the subject with delegates given insight into the latest research and practical applications of using AI to grow and develop.

The event, taking place on Thursday, 16 May will showcase exciting research taking place here in the county as well as across the UK.

Kent’s universities are powering UK research

Last year, CCCU announced it was part of an important study hoping to reduce the time taken to diagnose lung cancer by using AI software to detect abnormalities on chest X-rays.

This research, using an AI system developed by global health company, is an example of the kind of contribution Kent is making and collaboration it is taking to advances in life science and health care.

The LungIMPACT trial is being co-led by Dr Nick Woznita, consultant radiographer at University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (UCLH) and Clinical Academic in the School of Allied and Public Health Professionals at CCCU.

The system is designed to flag which patients would benefit from an urgent review of their scan by a reporting radiographer, who can then arrange for a same-day CT scan.

In 2023, researchers from CCCU also showed the potential of AI in the UK’s first lower limb exoskeleton aimed at helping children with neurological disorders.

Launched at London Tech Week, the university’s Artificial Intelligence and Assistive Robotics research team were able to demonstrate the innovative design and AI personalised predictive control.

The national potential of this project, developed with the specific consideration of the mobility of children with cerebral palsy, was presented the Secretary of State for Science, Innovation and Technology.

CCCU led research has also identified how AI could play a significant part in deterring vandalism of historic buildings such churches and castles, using machine learning to identify and match tags in different locations.

Exploring immense potential of AI

London based consultancy, Credera has partnered with the university for the event, providing invaluable revealing ground-breaking research that is taking place in this area in the UK and around the world.

“We are thrilled to facilitate this pioneering event, bringing together leading experts and forward-thinking businesses to explore the immense potential of AI,” Abbie Kempe, Director of Enterprise and Engagement at Credera commented.

The Alan Turing Institute near St Pancras International in London, the UK’s national institute for data science and artificial intelligence will be among those leading experts.

It’s latest study (March 2024) suggests AI could help automate 84% of repetitive transactions across 200 government services – from passport applications to benefit processing.

Connecting Kent to a growing AI cluster

Linked by high-speed rail to a growing cluster of AI expertise in the capital, Kent is well placed to benefit from this next technological revolution.

That includes world-class research taking place at our universities and science parks with a large talent pool talent already supporting key sectors driving the region’s economy.

Among the Kent AI experts sharing their insights will be Veraxis, based in Ramsgate,  which is operating at the forefront of leveraging AI to solve complex business challenges.

It’s co-founder and director Jonathan Smith, was project lead for East Kent Colleges green engineering centres that opened in Ashford and Canterbury last year with a focus on preparing Kent’s business for a net zero future.

These were launched to equip Kent’s existing and future workforce with the skills they need for a future powered by a new generation of robotics and greater automation.

Catherine Igoe, Locate in Kent, said: “This event will offer a showcase for the opportunities that AI can bring business and share something the exciting research that is putting Kent front and centre in this important area.

“We are on the cusp of the next technological revolution and Kent has the right connections,  expertise and location for businesses to seize the opportunities to come.”

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