Is Artificial intelligence a key challenge for Germany’s next government?


Germany’s reputation as an industrial powerhouse could be on the line if the country fails to integrate artificial intelligence technology. Succeeding will require addressing several smaller issues first.

Germany has long been a leader in science and engineering. Now, with artificial intelligence (AI) coming of age, the erstwhile technological trailblazer in western Europe is experiencing some growing pains.

AI is poised to become one of the key technologies of the economic and industrial future. Germany’s federal election is just around the corner, and the country’s next government will have a laundry list of grievances to address to make the country fit for the AI future.

This isn’t news to those leading Germany. Since 2018, the federal government has had a strategy in place aimed at cultivating the use of artificial intelligence at home, backed up by similar efforts on the EU level. Mobility, health care, the digitalization of industry and manufacturing, environmental sustainability and, of course, the coronavirus pandemic were some of the key areas considered in a progress update published last December by Germany’s government. The country sees major potential for the integration of AI technologies in these areas, but has identified several hurdles that need to be overcome first.