NOAA Launches New Strategy to Streamline and Advance Its AI-Driven Efforts

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The agency outlined its goals to accelerate the use of artificial intelligence across the enterprise.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration recently released a comprehensive artificial intelligence strategy that marks its deliberate effort to “dramatically expand” AI applications across all mission areas. 

To accommodate the action items and deadlines laid out, the agency will soon also launch a “roadmap” plan to guide the strategy’s implementation, officials wrote in the strategy.

The weather agency’s insiders also said it already harnesses a range of AI capabilities to support its efforts, including in robotics for deep-sea exploration, weather and ocean modeling, to better understand and protect endangered species, and beyond. However, in the strategy, agency officials note that “despite notable progress, the true potential for AI to advance NOAA’s mission has not been realized” because much of the work originated in individual offices “with no institutional support.” They added that there’s a lack of awareness about all AI activities across the agency, which has also caused some of its AI-driven efforts to be unintentionally redundant.

The new strategy is broken down into five goals, each equipped with specific supporting objectives and responsibilities, that are “intended to directly improve the understanding, coordination, awareness and application” of the technology across NOAA’s entire enterprise. 

The five new aims that make up the strategy include: 

  • Establish an efficient organizational structure and processes to advance AI across NOAA.
  • Advance AI research and innovation in support of NOAA’s mission.
  • Accelerate the transition of AI research to applications.
  • Strengthen and expand AI partnerships.
  • Promote AI proficiency in the workforce.

The final strategy was directly influenced by public comments, officials said, and NOAA will soon release a plan that more clearly defines deadlines, action items and responsibilities “as resources permit.” 

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