Nokia Foundation grants 2019 Recognition Award to Elements of AI online course

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Nokia Foundation has granted its 2019 Recognition Award to the Elements of AI free online course with Hanna Hagström, Director of AI Business at Reaktor, and Teemu Roos, Leader of AI Education at the Finnish Center for Artificial Intelligence and Associate Professor in Computer Science at the University of Helsinki, as the recipients.

The Foundation recognizes the outstanding work Hagström and Roos have done on the Elements of AI course that has helped teach the basics of artificial intelligence to more than 220,000 people in 110 countries.

The annual Nokia Foundation award ceremony was held on 28 November in Helsinki, Finland and celebrated the winners and the success of the course, which was created by the University of Helsinki and Reaktor. The course demonstrates best practices in the collaboration between universities and the private sector in working together to promote scientific development and education.

“Artificial Intelligence is already part of our everyday lives, and it is going to have an even bigger impact on every industry and individual in the future. This is why everyone should be given a chance to understand what AI really is and how we can use it. This is how we can empower people to take part in shaping the future,” said Hagström.

“There is great diversity among the participants; over 40% of the students are female, 25% of the students are over 40 and they speak several languages. The course is currently available in English, Finnish, Swedish and Estonian, and there’s interest in Europe and elsewhere in the world. We are also developing a follow-up course for students who are interested in diving deeper,” said Roos.

“In order to create new innovations based on AI, it is important that people from a variety of backgrounds learn about it and think of new ways of applying it. The Elements of AI course is one of the leading Massive Open On-line courses (MOOC) in the world. It allows students to gain credits for their formal education and the general public to update their competences. By leading the work on the Elements of AI course, Hagström and Roos have created an internationally competitive learning environment in Finland,” says Timo Ali-Vehmas, Chairman of the Board of Nokia Foundation.

Nokia Foundation has granted over 1,700 scholarships during its 24-year existence. In 2019, the Foundation will grant scholarships and awards totaling more than 300 000 euros.