Nigeria launches AI research scheme to support start-ups
Nigeria has established an Artificial Intelligence (AI) Research Scheme to provide financial assistance to businesses and researchers focusing on AI.
This initiative will award funds to 45 qualified start-ups and researchers to help their projects progress.
The initiative was announced by Bosun Tijani, the minister of communications, innovation, and digital economy, when he opened it for applicants.
The fundamental goal of this programme is to promote the wider usage of AI in order to increase Nigeria's global competitiveness.
Agriculture, education and workforce, finance, government, healthcare, utility, and sustainability are among the areas of concentration for this research project, according to the plan.
To be eligible for a grant, candidates must join a partnership with a start-up or tech company, a Nigerian university researcher, or a foreign researcher.
Their research proposal must be relevant to the government's AI priorities. Applicants must also submit a proposal detailing their initiative and its potential economic impact in Nigeria.
"We've launched the Nigeria Artificial Intelligence Research Scheme to fund 45 consortia of startups and researchers to allow them to explore further opportunities to deepen their work and build a sustainable AI ecosystem in Nigeria," the Minister said in announcing the scheme's debut. "We are encouraging AI researchers and companies to apply for grants of up to N5 million as part of our ministry's efforts to foster innovation, enhance efficiency in crucial sectors, and position Nigeria as a global centre for AI technology application."
This scheme's application period began on October 13, 2023, and will end on November 15, 2023. All applications must be submitted through the approved internet channel provided by the Ministry. An evaluation panel of AI professionals will review the proposals, and shortlisted applicants will be notified via email and invited to interviews.