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Tech Investor Implores Higher Ed to Partner With Gov, Industry for AI

Longtime Silicon Valley tech investor Mary Meeker issued a report this week arguing that that the tech industry and universities need to partner up in order to maintain a lead on other countries.

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(TNS) — Influential tech investor Mary Meeker published a new report Monday calling for the tech industry, government, and higher education to all work together to advance artificial intelligence during what she sees as an inflection point “of epic proportions.”

“We are in an intelligence arms race for hearts, minds, and power,” Meeker wrote in the report. “For the sake of democratic values, it’s crucial for those who uphold these principles to lead not lose. Actions taken in the next five years will be consequential.”

Meeker, a longtime Silicon Valley titan, was a leading Morgan Stanley analyst who would put out key calls on tech firms. She moved to venture capital in 2010 and has since launched her own firm, Bond Capital.

Meeker for years published an annual “Internet Trends” report, which dove deep into the state of the tech industry and ended up being highly cited in the tech world. The last one she published was in 2019.

In the latest report, called “AI & Universities,” Meeker said that the tech industry and universities need to partner up in order to maintain a lead on other countries.

AI, for example, could help create custom lesson plans to aid students’ knowledge gaps or help supplement learning material. “Tomorrow’s teachers may serve as cheerleader / coach as well as tutor, making the classroom more welcoming,” Meeker said. Tech companies, meanwhile, need to make their tech more accessible. That includes providing GPUs to schools.

“Our universities and regulators have a responsibility to rapidly and deeply understand the global stakes that AI presents for freedom, democratic values, good and evil … and take strong stands,” Meeker said.

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