The Danish National Strategy for Artificial Intelligence

The National Strategy for Artificial Intelligence sets the roadmap for how Denmark can be a front-runner in responsible development and use of AI – benefitting individuals, businesses, and society as a whole.

AI offers great opportunities for creating growth, prosperity, and world-class public services in the public sector. Therefore, the Danish National Strategy for Artificial Intelligence seeks to create a framework for businesses, researchers, and public authorities to enable them to better exploit the potential of AI with a high level of responsibility.

The strategy puts forth four objectives for the Danish development and use of AI:

  1. Denmark should have a common ethical and human-centred basis for AI
  2. Danish researchers should research and develop AI
  3. Danish businesses should achieve growth through developing and using AI
  4. The public sector should use AI to offer world-class public services

Potentials and Challenges

Thanks to a long-standing focus on digital technology and solutions in both the public and private sectors, Denmark has a good starting point for using new technologies: high-quality and structured public data sets, a flexible labour market, and a population adaptable and open to new technologies.

However, the use of AI also poses a number of challenges. For instance, AI raises a number of ethical concerns regarding openness and transparency, as the technology allows for new ways of decision-making. The development and use of artificial intelligence also require access to specialised labour – and those skills are in great demand in society generally.

Danish is a small language area, and this challenges the development of solutions based on AI using speech recognition and language understanding in Danish. These are challenges that the strategy attempts to address.

Initiatives of the Strategy

The strategy's initiatives fall within four focus areas that will help ensure that the work to increase the uptake of AI is done ethically, with access to good data, strong skills and new knowledge, and that the possibilities for investments in technology are improving.

In order to boost the work on AI in Denmark and gain more experience with the technology, specific objectives are also formulated in four priority areas: health, energy and utilities, agriculture, and transport.

The strategy contains 24 initiatives that cover the public and private sectors. The strategy allocates DKK 60 million for new initiatives. For instance, a number of public-sector signature AI projects are carried out in cooperation with municipalities, regions, and private companies.

AI is a technology undergoing rapid development, and therefore the strategy is revisited at regular intervals, so efforts can be adapted and new ones can come into play.

Key initiatives

The National Strategy for Artificial Intelligence contains 24 initiatives aimed at strengthening the development and increasing the use of AI in Denmark.

Principles for the Responsible Development and Use of Artificial Intelligence

Ethical principles are the framework for the development and use of AI in Denmark. Additional initiatives strengthen cyber security, create legal clarity, and ensure responsible and transparent use of AI in the public sector.

Common Danish Language resource

A common Danish language resource can support and accelerate the development of language-technology solutions in Danish. The language resource has been developed and is freely available, enabling suppliers to build on existing knowledge to create new solutions within voice recognition and language understanding to benefit people, authorities, and businesses.

Read more about the common Danish language resource

More Open Public-Sector Data for Artificial Intelligence

In collaboration with businesses and research communities, the ambition is to identify five public-sector datasets during 2020 and 2021 which can be made accessible for businesses, researchers, and public authorities and contribute to developing new AI systems. This public data will not be personal data, but could be environmental and climate data, or location data in the transport area.

Signature Projects in the Public Sector

There is a lack of experience in the use of AI in the public sector. In collaboration with regions and municipalities, a number of signature projects have been launched within the areas of health, social welfare, and employment, as well as within cross-sector case handling.

Stronger Investment in Danish Businesses

It is proposed to launch a pilot project in the form of an investment pool of DKK 20 million (EUR 3.1 million) over four years, targeting businesses with AI-based business models. The prerequisite for this is 50 percent co-financing from the private sector, amounting to a total investment pool of DKK 40 million (EUR 6.2 million). The Danish Growth Fund will manage the fund.