Artificial intelligence bridging gap between Germany and U.S.

Petra Vorsteher launches latest funding initiative - AI key to future
29 October 2021
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Everything will revolve around artificial intelligence when the upcoming AI Summit gets underway on December 1, 2021 in Hamburg with emphasis on the diversity of AI applications. Initiated among others by Petra Vorsteher, the joint founder of AI.HAMBURG and AI.FUND, the summit comes in the wake of the five-day in August. "The international AI.Summit, which kicks off Blockchance Europe 2021, will be even more global. We have been able to attract top-class speakers including Orlagh Neary, General Manager of AI and Go-to-market innovations at Microsoft, Jamie Cattell, Global Managing Partner - Cognitive Enterprise Strategy at IBM, and Mark Anderson, CEO of Pattern Computer based in Seattle, who recently helped develop a real-time coronavirus test."


Transatlantic AI eXchange - bilateral AI initiative

The United States remains the driving force behind new AI technologies. Vorsteher, who lived in Silicon Valley for over 40 years and founded the IT company, Smaato, there with her husband Ragnar Kruse, values cross-border networks. That motivated her to launch the Transatlantic AI eXchange in April. 

The initiative promotes German-American exchange on artificial intelligence. AI webinars, workshops and coaching sessions bring together stakeholders in the industry, research and government to examine trends and forward-looking AI use cases and to pave the way for transatlantic business models and partnerships.

Petra Vorsteher, founder of AI.Hamburg
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Petra Vorsteher, founder
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AI offers almost boundless opportunities for applications

First successful events

Events on both sides of the Atlantic provide access to leading AI companies such as Google and SAP, investors such as Microsoft's venture funds M12, Intel Capital or Bosch Venture Capital, as well as established universities and research institutions such as Stanford and the German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence. Both Hans-Ulrich Südbeck, German Consul General in San Francisco, and Darion Akins, U.S. Consul General in Hamburg, have welcomed the launch of the Transatlantic AI eXchange.

Initial events have been well received in both Germany and the United States, said Vorsteher. "We had AI events on healthcare, Robo Cars or on "How transatlantic research at ICSI - UC Berkeley ignites German start-ups" with Professor Olaf Groth as moderator. The CEO of and author of Solomon's Code will also present the AI.SUMMIT in Hamburg." Vorsteher is planning a conference and a visit by a delegation to Silicon Valley in 2022.


AI to enrich almost all life areas

The Transatlantic AI eXchange is also keen to ensure that AI is used resposibly e.g., by anonymising data, in a bid to counter scepticism and to allay people's fears. "There tends to be a realistic assessment of the risks and opportunities of new AI technologies in Silicon Valley. However, there is still a need for education in the rest of the country, which is similar to Germany in many cases," Vorsteher pointed out.

"AI is the key technology of the future and can change nearly every area of our lives positively," she added, and cites medicine as an example. AI systems can significantly increase the chances of healing patients and helping doctors with their diagnoses and therapeutic decisions.

AI.Hamburg Fabrik AI.Hamburg 15.10.21
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Intelligentes Arbeiten in naher Zukunft
AI.Hamburg Medicine
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Blessings of (AI) medicine

Best of both worlds

However, the framework conditions for such forward-looking scenarios are not yet in place. The Hamburg-based start-up, Mindpeak, received approval for its AI software BreastIHC, which can identify and characterise breast cancer cells in May. Yet, the AI assistance system for diagnosing prostate cancer by the Hamburg-based company, Fuse-AI, has not yet been approved. Vorsteher remarked.

"Such AI solutions recognise cancer cells with an accuracy of well over 90 per cent. The result is then checked by the doctor, so that patients get the best of both worlds i.e., the combination of human kindness and technology."

Artificial intelligence in Hamburg

Hamburg has established itself as a strong AI location. In addition to the AI.HAMBURG, AI.FUND and Transatlantic AI eXchange initiatives, the Artificial Intelligence Center Hamburg (ARIC) brings together AI stakeholders in business and science. All kinds of events, workshops and projects help companies to implement their own AI applications. Hamburg co-operates on projects such as "AI Sigs" with AI institutes in Bremen and Schleswig-Holstein to bundle expertise in healthcare. Click on for an overview of other AI hubs and start-ups.