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Pittsburgh’s Place in the Global AI Ecosystem

Over the past few years, artificial intelligence has become the focal point of competition for companies, cities, and countries around the world. Each of them is vying for advantages in talent and technology, in hopes of being the first mover to disrupt an industry or the best equipped to reap the benefits of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Within this race, there are a number of ways that Pittsburgh is near-uniquely poised to emerge as a global leader…that is, if we can meet the opportunity.

Kenny Chen, founder of Pittsburgh AI and Innovation Director at Ascender, shares some insight on the role that we have in the fourth Industrial Revolution that Pittsburgh is facing and the actions that we can be implementing starting today. It’s no doubt that the global AI ecosystem is moving fast. There is an opportunity to lead, but this is only if we can mobilize and act more quickly. Pittsburgh is among the cities that have struggled, survived, and is now recognized worldwide for its story of resurgence and reinvention. Now, we have everything that we need to do things right and step up as a global leader, the only question is how will we make sure that we develop AI for good? This all starts with us by ensuring our communities are engaged, informed, and most importantly, aware.

Kenny Chen is the Innovation Director at Ascender, an economic development nonprofit that advances entrepreneurial and technological literacy in the Pittsburgh region, through functions as a startup incubator, coworking space, community hub, and producer of the annual Thrival Festival. In his role, Kenny focuses on driving strategic initiatives and cross-sector partnerships that leverage Pittsburgh’s strengths to support local innovators and contribute to global dialogues on advanced technologies.

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