IBM and The Government of Spain Forge a New Path in AI Development

In a groundbreaking move poised to redefine Spain’s stance on technological innovation, the Government, spearheaded by President Pedro Sánchez, and IBM, under the leadership of Senior Vice President Darío Gil, have embarked on a strategic partnership aimed at revolutionizing Artificial Intelligence (AI) capabilities in Spain. This partnership, sealed at the famed Moncloa Complex in Madrid, promises to usher in a new era of open, ethical, and responsible AI development, focusing on creating foundational AI models proficient in Spanish and its co-official languages.

The agreement, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), signifies a mutual commitment between the Spanish Government and IBM to elevate Spain’s AI landscape. José Luis Escrivá, Minister for Digital Transformation and Civil Service, and Darío Gil, on behalf of IBM, accentuated the collaboration’s aim to drive Spain towards becoming a frontrunner in the realm of AI, particularly in generative AI and AI supercomputing.

During the landmark meeting, President Sánchez highlighted the pivotal role of this partnership in reinforcing Spain’s dedication to fostering ethical AI usage, especially within the public sector. This initiative is not just about technological advancement; it’s about creating a sustainable, productivity-boosting, and strategically autonomous digital future for Spain and Europe at large.

With Spain’s vibrant linguistic diversity in mind, this collaboration focuses on developing Large Language Models (LLMs) and Small Language Models (SLMs) that understand and generate Spanish and its co-official languages, such as Catalan, Basque, Galician, and Valencian. This ambitious undertaking leverages IBM’s open-source AI framework, promising enhanced innovation, transparency, and safety, all while bolstering Spain’s competitive edge in the global tech arena.

“AI positions us at the threshold of a new industrial revolution,” remarked Minister José Luis Escrivá. He stressed the government’s resolve to harness the full potential of AI ethically and effectively, with IBM’s formidable expertise ensuring a robust foundation for this vision.

Darío Gil from IBM echoed this sentiment, emphasizing the shared ambition to accelerate Spain’s AI strategy. “Together, we will work to foster the responsible use of AI to drive sustainable growth in Spain, and all Spanish speaking countries worldwide,” Gil stated, underscoring the global impact of this initiative.

Spanish, being the world’s second most spoken language, represents a vast, untapped potential for AI development. This collaboration aims to create AI models that not only reduce biases but also provide competitive alternatives for the Spanish-speaking world. By leveraging advanced techniques and fostering community-driven enhancements, this partnership seeks to establish a robust ecosystem of AI creators and innovators in Spain.

The comprehensive MoU between Spain and IBM outlines five key principles for this collaboration, ranging from the development of foundational AI models in Spanish and its co-official languages to fostering an ecosystem of AI innovation that benefits both the public sector and small-medium sized businesses across Spain.

This collaboration marks a significant step towards realizing the full potential of generative AI and supercomputing, setting Spain on course to become a global leader in responsible and innovative AI development.

About IBM

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For Spain, this MoU is not just a commitment to technological evolution but a pledge to its people for a smarter, more connected future. Through this collaboration with IBM, Spain is laying down the groundwork for a future where AI and technology work hand in hand with humanity’s diverse linguistic and cultural heritage, propelling the nation and the Spanish language towards a pioneering role in the global digital arena.

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