Collaboration behind unique AI-program
KTH has joined forces with Ericsson to develop a unique contract education program within Machine Learning and AI. Right now, 30 Ericsson engineers around the world are reading the course.
“This is an incredibly exciting initiative and the first big contract education program for the School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and involves three different departments in the School,” says Program Director and Professor Carlo Fischione.
Developing the program, called the Data Science Micro Degree Program, has been done very much in a pioneering spirit where researchers from Ericsson and professors at KTH have literally brought their wise heads together to create a concept whose content meets the know-how development needs of the company.
It has been a fascinating dynamic where we have had a continuous opportunity to learn from each other about the very latest technology and knowledge in the area at a very advanced level,” says Fischione.
The know-how in question is namely to combine and develop telecommunications, artificial intelligence and machine learning to process ever greater data volumes, in a smarter, faster and more secure way, for example.
“The development of complex AI systems is being led by Silicon Valley and companies like Google. This is an opportunity for KTH to position itself as world-leading and for Ericsson to secure a good place on the AI train,” says Professor Mikael Skoglund, KTH, who is responsible for the strategic partnership with Ericsson.
Contract education, to build on know-how in the middle of a passionate career, with the very latest knowledge, is something that the enterprise sector has been seeking for a long time, and something KTH has been keen to realise for just as long - as part of its continuing professional development and in-service training courses. Courses that have previously been offered were often existing courses adapted to a specific industry – unlike in this case built from scratch in partnership with a company.
At a time when government powers are increasingly investing in lifelong learning and KTH is building an organisation for this, this program is an extremely good fit for all parties involved.
“The program in advanced intelligent software is a kind of pilot scheme and an inspiring initiative. It is fully in line with KTH’s investment in this type of leading edge education that matches the needs of our partners and the enterprise sector,” says Mikael Östling, Deputy President at KTH.
The rapid transition to data-driven systems and working practices within industry requires enhanced competences within AI, in many cases acquired through further education at university level, according to Erik Ekudden, Head of technology and strategy at Ericsson. He believes that the combination of a unique Swedish industrial domain competence, combined with AI, is central to Sweden’s competitiveness in the digital transformation. That transformation rests on a high quality, highly accessible digital infrastructure, built on mobile technology with 5G and AI networks, which is Ericsson’s focus.
“To take a step further and offer the most advanced engineers and researchers further education, we, together with KTH, have started a new program – an important and exciting approach which we believe will be very attractive,” says Erik Ekudden.
Text: Jill Klackenberg