June 22, 2024

South Africa launches Artificial Intelligence Industry Association

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SAAIA seeks to encourage stakeholders in the adoption of responsible AI for the commercial and societal benefit of the citizens of South Africa with a primary focus on economic growth, trade, investment, equality and inclusivity.  

From hype to a global reality the SAAIA vision has been shaped by analysing the global and local landscape, identifying needs and filling the blanks with research.  This has revealed both the challenges and opportunities AI and related smart technologies can bring to South Africa for both citizens and the wider economy.  Our vision is evidence based with responsible, human centric AI as its foundation.

SAAIA logo

The SAAIA mission is to engage both individuals and organisations, novices and experts, those who are connected and not connected so no one is left behind.  It is of vital importance that the opportunities Artificial Intelligence presents are possible and available for everyone to embrace.  Therefore our mission is underpinned by ten key objectives. Serve as the voice of the industry. Provide analysis & research to inform strategy & decision making

Help National, Provincial & City Governments with policy making. Unite buyers and suppliers to grow the economy. Connect SMMEs to funding to create new companies & jobs. Attract FDI to South Africa as the “4IR gateway” to Africa. Help African smart tech companies find markets abroad. Showcase the best of South African AI Innovation & Research.

Promote debate on inclusion, ethics, regulation & standards. Share best practice & education resources for all.

Dr Nick Bradshaw, the founder of SAAIA
Dr Nick Bradshaw, the founder of SAAIA

Dr Nick Bradshaw, the founder of SAAIA stated, “Our research has shown that AI and related automation technologies are currently impacting 120+ traditional industries globally AND creating new opportunities and challenges in timescale never seen before.  The speed of this disruption is faster than any other industrial revolution that has gone before it.  SAAIA seeks to encourage stakeholders in the adoption of responsible AI for the commercial and societal benefit of the citizens of South Africa with a primary focus on regulation, economic growth, trade, investment, fairness, equality and inclusivity.”

The founding Advisory Board members are derived from a diverse range of organisations, including; Michalsons, GIZ, ExploreAI, Cirrus AI, TinyML Foundation, Augmented Start-ups, Data Economy Policy Hub (DepHUB), Socially Acceptable, mLab, Zindi, Technology Innovation Agency, ecosystem. Ai, Tshwane University of Technology, Western Cape Government and Webber Wentzel.

Individual SAAIA membership is free and members gain access to resources, insights and news throughout the year. Members also receive discounts to join the association’s annual event, AI Expo Africa, which this year is being held in Johannesburg on 2-3 November at the Sandton Convention Centre.

SAAIA will be holding a formal launch event and roadshow series kicking off in Pretoria on 19th July. 

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