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Surrey & StoryFutures – the home of a new UKRI Centre for AI for Digital Media Inclusion

Amidst all the headlines about AI this week, I was especially pleased to hear that the University of Surrey and the StoryFutures unit at Royal Holloway, University of London, will be the home of a new UKRI Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) in AI for Digital Media Inclusion, as part of the UK Government’s AI Safety campaign.

I have been an enthusiastic supporter of the game-changing work of StoryFutures over the last 4 years. When I was asked to help with their bid a few months ago, I was more than happy to do so, and I look forward to continuing this support as the Centre’s plans and ambitions progress.

Last April, I hosted a masterclass on ‘The Evolution of Immersive Storytelling’ at BFI as part of StoryFutures’ work, and I saw at first hand the way in which they work collaboratively with academics and the creative industries.

This new centre will certainly help a broad spectrum of people across the UK by harnessing the possibilities of AI to help adapt media for individual needs. I feel truly aligned with the work that Surrey and StoryFutures aim to do – I have always been a strong proponent of media inclusion, and have always been interested by humanity’s relationship with AI: in 2018 I sat on the House of Lords Select Committee on ‘AI in the UK’, and I now act as Chair of a new examination board of ‘AI in Education’. This is a cross-sector initiative conceived by Sir Anthony Seldon. It aims to ensure that AI will enhance education in a way that benefits all – a goal that will be shared I’m sure by the new PhD students at the CDT in AI for Digital Media Inclusion.

Exciting times indeed for the intersection of technology, the creative industries, and education.