The Data Lab looks to support Scotland’s economic recovery with new 'community' hub

Scotland’s innovation centre for data and artificial intelligence has pushed the button on a new digital community to support Scotland’s economic recovery post-pandemic.

Bosses at The Data Lab said the launch of Data Lab Community followed a successful pilot programme.

The new venture promises a “much-needed” online space where data and AI students, leaders and professionals can “connect, grow and collaborate”, as well as view the latest industry jobs. It will also host exclusive events, online learning courses and a mentoring programme.

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The community brings together the public, private and academia sectors, and has already built up 200 members from “some of the world’s most innovative companies, renowned institutions and ambitious start-ups”.

Brian Hills, deputy chief executive and head of service design at The Data Lab: 'As Scotland, and the world, moves into recovery and growth, The Data Lab’s mission to help the nation maximise the economic and social value from data and AI has never been so important.' Picture: Jane Barlow

Brian Hills, deputy chief executive and head of service design at The Data Lab, which has hubs in Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen and Inverness, said: “As Scotland, and the world, moves into recovery and growth, The Data Lab’s mission to help the nation maximise the economic and social value from data and AI has never been so important.

“The launch of The Data Lab Community plays a big part in delivering our ambition - enabling us to scale collaboration and skills development anchored in our values of innovation, growth, support and respect.

“There is a tremendous willingness in the data community to help others and the community will provide a catalyst for those who want to help others succeed with data and AI to connect and collaborate with those earlier in their digital journey, and help them accelerate their path to success.

“We’re already seeing fantastic feedback from users and have a waiting list of people and companies keen to join the digital community to encourage innovation and share best practice,” he added.

Rich Wilson, founder and chief executive of Scottish tech start-up Gigged.AI, added: “The Data Lab Community is a brilliant idea. It is a place for those involved in data and AI to network and share ideas, no matter where their business is on its digital transformation journey.

“The forum and jobs sections are great for our business, and we can see this driving real value in the industry. It is also rare to find a platform where the public and private sector can network together.”

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