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Artificial Intelligence offers exciting potential for developing countries

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AI holds tantalising promise for the emerging world

Technology has the power to bring both prosperity and fear of missing out in the emerging world. The boss of Microsoft, Satya Nadella, worries about the potential of artificial intelligence (AI) to disappoint the global south. However, AI stands to transform lives in developing countries, raising productivity and shrinking gaps in human capital faster than ever before.

AI has the potential to be a useful tool for consumers and workers in emerging countries, making information more accessible and creating new job opportunities. The disruption caused by AI may be smaller in developing countries due to fewer white-collar workers. Furthermore, AI could improve and make public services more accessible, addressing long-standing issues of education and healthcare in these economies.

Policymakers and entrepreneurs worldwide are exploring ways in which AI can be leveraged in developing countries. India, Kenya, Brazil, and other nations are already implementing AI solutions to improve education, healthcare, and access to information. Unlike earlier technologies, AI can spread quickly through mobile phones, benefiting populations in poorer countries faster than ever before.

Although challenges such as computing power costs, data storage, and regulatory issues may slow down AI adoption in some regions, investments in AI diffusion will be richly rewarded. Despite uncertainties, the potential of AI to improve human capital and government services in emerging countries is significant. This presents a unique opportunity for these nations to benefit from the AI revolution and catch up with the developed world.

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