ICT UPDATE | India’s IT sector to focus on AI, data science in coming years

The World Congress on Information Technology being held in south India has many takeaways, giving an outlook on India’s information technology (IT) industry in the near future.

NEW DELHI, INDIA — The World Congress on Information Technology being held in south India has many takeaways, giving an outlook on India’s information technology (IT) industry in the near future.

The key buzzwords are artificial intelligence (AI), data science and more focused mathematics studies.

India’s National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM), a trade association of the country’s IT and Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) industry which organized the World Congress on IT, is setting up a Center of Excellence (CoE) for data science and AI in Hyderabad which is hosting the ongoing IT congress.

The CoE will be part of the network of similar centres being set up in different cities in the country. It will prepare case studies, research papers and serve as a platform for technology collaboration between the stakeholders and to build solutions in this space.

“The CoE will catalyse the growth of the deep tech system by providing the stimulus for innovation and in-depth research in the areas of data science and artificial intelligence,” business daily Business Line quoted NASSCOM President R. Chandrashekhar as saying on the sidelines of the IT congress.

It is expected that revenue from data science and AI, from both IT and non-IT industries, would be around 16 billion U.S. dollars, providing jobs to nearly 150,000 professionals in the next seven to eight years.

The other key trend to be keenly observed in India’s IT sector in the coming years is focusing on early school education imparting stronger mathematics curriculum, apart from existing focus on spoken English.

The Business Line quoted NASSCOM Chairman Raman Roy as saying that there was an urgent need to relook the way of education, especially related to mathematics, as “it is at the heart of AI and big data”.

“The majority of the youth in college have to improve their mathematics skills, otherwise India cannot stay ahead in the age of automation and robotics,” he added.

It is also being felt in the industry that so far Indians gained prominence at the world IT fora due to their fine English speaking skills, but henceforth should hone their mathematics skills to remain relevant in the IT business.

Akhilesh Tuteja, head of risk consulting firm KPMG, reportedly is of the opinion that technologies like AI are built on the foundation of deductive reasoning and data science.

According to him, aspiring AI developers need to have a better understanding of solving business problems and statistics in addition to mathematics skills.

— XINHUA

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