BAGUIO CITY – The House committee on higher and technical education proposed the conduct of a comprehensive research on artificial intelligence (AI) that will include the training of one million Filipinos on AI.
In a privilege speech delivered in the House recently, Rep. mark Go, chairman of the House committee on higher and technical education, said that the proposal will also include the establishment of an AI education program and a grand facility for AI research amidst the proliferation of generative AI platforms such as chatGPT that have already affected industries worldwide since their introduction just last year.
The lawmaker disclosed that the AI education program aims to educate 1 million Filipinos where the same is inspired by Finland’s initiative to train 1 percent of its citizens on AI and the Development Academy of the Philippines’ Project SPARTA which offers free courses in data and analytics.
“This program will empower individuals across diverse backgrounds to grasp the essentials of AI, bridging the gap and nurturing a workforce equipped to harness its potential,” Congressman Go stressed.
He also sought the establishment of a grant facility for AI research geared towards startups and the academe.
“This facility will extend support to Private Higher Education Institutions, State Universities and Colleges, and Local Colleges and Universities, enabling them to undertake impactful AI projects and cultivate the capacity to provide comprehensive AI education. Through these grants, we aspire to foster a rich pool of knowledge, enabling our institutions to drive cutting-edge advancements and cultivate a robust AI ecosystem,” he said.
The lawmaker argued that AI presented challenges and benefits to the nation, from new industry and educational opportunities to potential job displacement, deepfakes, and ethical issues. He said that the desire to regulate AI technology must be balanced with nurturing innovation.
Go said that with AI’s ability to automate tasks, the country must stay vigilant about potential job displacement in the workforce, adding that Filipinos must be equipped to navigate the evolving landscape of work.
“In the past, AI was the [domain] of specialized experts, requiring a deep knowledge of disciplines like mathematics, data science, and programming. Yet the landscape has evolved dramatically,” the lawmaker said, adding that “artificial intelligence is becoming part of our everyday lives. It deserves to be properly understood in order for us to make the best possible decisions for ourselves and our future.”
The Baguio solon emphasizes taking decisive steps to harness AI responsibly, where education is accessible and innovation is encouraged. “Today, with all the developments and newfound possibilities in the sector, we must ask ourselves: Should we not strive to educate 1% of Filipinos in the language of Artificial Intelligence? Our nation holds vast untapped potential, with minds capable of shaping the future. This is a question we cannot ignore,” he lamented.
Debates are now ongoing in various corners of the world on whether or not to fully adopt AI as the same is still on its development stage although it was able to take the world like a storm that caught everyone by surprise.
Many organizations and companies have already started incorporating Ai in their systems as part of the ongoing automation and digitalization of transactions but there are still doubts on the ability of AI to perform the creativity, empathy and human touch that has been possessed by humans to be able to come up with quality work and increase productivity.
AI has been considered to be part of the rapid advancement of information and communication technology that has virtually changed the landscape of the workplaces across industries through the years.