Microsoft, Announced Plans To Train 2 Million Indians In Artificial Intelligence (AI)

Nadella expressed optimism about India's unique AI use cases and emphasized the country's potential to drive innovation and socio-economic progress through AI adoption.

Microsoft, Announced Plans To Train 2 Million Indians In Artificial Intelligence (AI)
Image / Microsoft

During a visit to Mumbai, Satya Nadella, the CEO of Microsoft, announced plans to train 2 million Indians in artificial intelligence (AI) as part of the company's efforts to advance AI capabilities and foster economic growth in India. Speaking at an event in Mumbai, Nadella highlighted Microsoft's leading position in AI and emphasized the importance of embracing AI technology to enhance productivity and innovation.

Nadella acknowledged Microsoft's competitive edge in AI, asserting that even with the introduction of newer models like GPT-4, Microsoft's AI offerings remain superior. He urged businesses to adopt AI solutions to stay ahead in the rapidly evolving digital landscape.

India, Nadella emphasized, has emerged as a significant talent hub for AI developers, ranking second globally in terms of talent base on GitHub. Microsoft's commitment to skilling 2 million individuals in AI, particularly in smaller cities and towns, reflects its dedication to democratizing access to AI education and empowering communities across India.

Puneet Chandok, leading Microsoft's India and South Asia business, underscored India's growing credibility in the global AI landscape, noting the nation's ambitious pursuit of AI-driven innovation.

Homegrown innovators like ITC and Karya are demonstrating how AI can be used to drive business growth and social impact. For example, ITC developed a multilingual chatbot to assist farmers in enhancing crop yields, while Karya focuses on providing fair wages and education to rural workers while enriching AI training data.

Recognizing the need to prepare India's workforce for an AI-powered economy, Nadella announced Microsoft's ADVANTA(I)GE INDIA initiative, aiming to skill 2 million Indians in AI by 2025. The program includes technical training for women in Tier 2/3 cities, basic AI literacy for students, and partnerships with India's Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship to equip vocational students and job seekers with AI skills.

Nadella emphasized that India has the potential to be a global leader in AI, and creating AI fluency at scale is crucial for realizing this vision. The initiative seeks to empower citizens across India with the skills needed to thrive in the AI era, fostering inclusivity and diversity in the AI talent pool.

The skilling initiative not only benefits Indian organizations by maximizing returns on AI investments but also ensures that the broader population can participate in and benefit from AI-led growth. For Microsoft, this initiative aligns with its responsible AI principles and presents an opportunity to contribute to India's socio-economic development while advancing its strategic interests in the Indian market.