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Bayer champions digital transformation at the AI Everything Summit 2019

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“Artificial intelligence (AI) is a source of both huge excitement and understandable apprehension – we must shape and use the technology in the way we want, to ensure trust amongst users” said Saskia Steinacker, Global Head of Digital Transformation at Bayer, yesterday at the AI Everything summit held in Dubai. Bayer, a leading life sciences company, is looking to better leverage the healthcare and agriculture opportunities presented by AI digitalization within the region.

The two-day AI Everything summit, held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President & Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, is a result of the UAE’s mission to promote initiatives and collaborations within the field of AI. AI has had an unprecedented impact, potentially contributing $320 billion within the Middle East by 2030.[1]

“At Bayer, we are leading digital transformation in the life sciences. There is a tremendous opportunity when it comes to AI in particular; we are constantly looking for novel ways to digitalize internal processes and collaborate more effectively. This is proving to be vital to become more agile and innovative within our industries,” said Ms Steinacker. “Our objective is to have digitalization play a more important role both in customer experience and within operations, so we can facilitate new digital business models”.

Within healthcare, AI presents the opportunity to identify diseases and illness at an earlier stage in order to provide earlier, personalised treatment. Moreover, new medications will be able to be brought to market earlier due to advanced analytics and use of clinical trial data. Bayer is looking to build their own AI assets leveraging their strong scientific and industrial base, state-of-the-art research labs, recognized leadership in robotics and innovative start-up solutions in the life sciences to shape the future of the business.

“As an example of our innovation within healthcare, we are currently working on an AI-driven solution to help radiologists detect the life-threatening lung disease CTEPH by automatically detecting disease patterns on CT scans” added Ms Steinacker.

 

In addition to pharmaceuticals, Bayer has a large presence in the farming and agriculture sector. AI has a large influence within this remit; for example, it is now possible to calculate the right time and appropriate dose of fertilizer and crop protection agents for every square meter of ground, allowing for far more sustainable land use. For Bayer, the revolutionary move towards AI and digitalization means far more new business opportunities than ever before.

“It is true that AI is a powerful tool, but with any such novel technology, people are apprehensive to trust it. We must act to safeguard fundamental data-protection rights – therefore, we must shape AI in the way we want in order to form a trustworthy technology that can help making people’s lives better” noted Ms Steinacker.

[1] The potential impact of Artificial Intelligence in the Middle East. https://www.pwc.com/m1/en/publications/potential-impact-artificial-intelligence-middle-east.html

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