Will artificial brains replace human ones? — Analysis

Artificial intelligence can be applied in many different areas. Each of these areas requires qualified personnel, which is why Russian universities have made it their top priority to train them.

Artificial Intelligence has been a major research field in Russia. Now, it’s no longer just a matter for a small group of specialists, but an area of great interest for students and young professionals. AI education and investigation is one of the main areas of focus for the universities taking part in the ‘Priority 2030’ academic leadership program, which was launched in Russia this year.

It’s a major initiative, led by Russia’s Ministry of Science and Higher Education, which aims to boost higher education and research programs. The academic leadership program wants the country’s higher education centers to become more attractive to foreign students and scientists. This summer Priority 2030 went into operation. After several months, more than one hundred Russian universities had been chosen to be part of the project. They would each receive 100 million rubles (1.4 million USD) per year to support the development of their project. A number of people applied for special grants which allow them to obtain up to 1 million rubles (or $13.6million) per year.

While one of the main tasks for the participants is to educate future specialists on how to work with AI, the question ‘Will AI and robots make people useless?’ has a clear answer: People will always be needed, it’s just that their skills will have to be modified.

Artificial Intelligence driver

AI can be successfully applied to the transportation system. It can analyze transport risks and optimize and control various processes. – no matter whether it’s air, land, railway, or water transport. This new technology has broader uses every day so qualified personnel are required. The Russian University of Transport, under the Priority 2030 program, is working in both directions – researching ways to include AI in all types of transport, as well as educating professionals on how to manage it. Future professional will be required to monitor road quality and increase logistics efficiency. This is a difficult task as it relies on manual labor. This requires technical and managerial skills as well as IT management.

AI technology is expected to improve the efficiency of the economy and cut costs. Consumers will also see a decrease in final prices.

In 2023, the university will launch its bachelor’s degree program, “Neurotechnology, AI and Predictive Analytics in Transport Systems,” and a year later, a follow-up master’s degree program is scheduled to be introduced.

Atomic Copy

How can you teach your students how to operate a nuclear reactor? You can take them to see a working one. Quite dangerous. You can build a replica. However, would everyone be able to inspect every part of the reactor? There is an answer: create a virtual replica, similar to the one at the National Research Nuclear University MEPhI. This university is also participating in Priority 2030. It allows students to simulate processes that can’t be performed on a real reactor – to increase power, change its parts, and connect and disconnect devices. You can also simulate managing emergencies, and even repairing and maintaining the reactor.

“Also, this project may be used for science popularization and for scientific tourism, it may boost students’ interest regarding modern digital technologies,” the university’s deputy head Georgy Tikhomirov told the media.

A search for an AI ethics consensus

Do future diplomats need AI? Priority 2030 participant Moscow State Institute of International Relations may have the answer. It opened its AI Center in October. This center is designed to investigate ethical issues and international economic relations related to the technology. This university is aiming to establish itself as an expert hub. It will also consult government agencies regarding issues that relate to AI regulation and the digital economy.

In October 2021, the Center organized its first event – the roundtable discussion “AI Ethics: Searching for Consensus.” In December, it hosted the conference “AI Global Dimension: From Discussion to Practice.” The Center works in both Russian and English languages. The Center is responsible for publishing research findings in specialist media outlets.

In 2018, the university launched an AI master’s program, and its graduates are already employed in the Center. ADV and Microsoft are among the many partners of this program.

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