In December 2018, the European Commission published a coordinated European plan on artificial intelligence. The plan focuses on an ethical, human-centered artificial intelligence with which Europe can differentiate itself on the world stage, an "artificial intelligence made in Europe". A stronger investment rhythm in research, spreading towards businesses and enabling technologies will be necessary for this. In view of these objectives, the Commission wants to better network and strengthen new and existing centers of artificial intelligence and related technologies. For this, it provides so-called excellence centers around research, testing and experimentation facilities, digital hubs for dissemination to SMEs; networks and centers that will be selected or established in the coming years. For all this, the investment rhythm in artificial intelligence should systematically increase to 20 billion euros per year in the period 2021-2027, with public investment increasing by 70% compared to the current level.
Flanders supports the coordinated European artificial intelligence plan. Flanders will soon not only meet the demand to develop a strategy / action plan, but also to invest 70% more from government budgets. At the end of September 2018, the Government of Flanders decided to invest an additional 30 million euros annually in a coherent program that is in line with the priorities set by the European Commission on ethics, strengthening research and take-up by the business community. These are also the three aspects on which the Flemish artificial intelligence program focuses, namely: supporting policy (with an important role for ethics and skills), take-up by the business community and top strategic basic research.