Global study predicts transport improvements from AI


New study by World Economic Forum places transport in top three sectors expected to benefit from artificial intelligence in the years ahead.  

Partnering with Ipsos Mori, the World Economic Forum (WEF) has revealed transport is among the three sectors, along with entertainment and education, expected to most benefit from artificial intelligence around the world.

While fewer than half of people around the world expect artificial intelligence to improve legal rights, living costs or employment, three quarters expect transport to improve as a result of the new technology.

From autonomous and semi-autonomous vehicles to more intelligent management of railways, roads and airports, the potential for transport is clear. Though positive attitudes towards AI are far from universal.

People in emerging economies have a strongly positive outlook on AI technology, with countries like Saudi Arabia, Mexico and South Africa showing strong levels of both understanding about what AI is, and positivity about its likely impact on daily life in future. This contrasts to established economies like the USA, UK and Germany, where understanding and positivity are both much lower.

That lack of awareness and understanding may explain why some sectors already advancing with AI are not highlighted among the most widely expected beneficiaries. While the energy sector has started adopting a wide range of artificial intelligence to enhance efficiency, this may not be seen routinely by the wider public. As a result, relatively few people expect AI to impact on the cost of living.

So it may be that sectors beyond transport need to do more to promote awareness of the benefits they aim to deliver through AI.