Public and private entities across the world are exploring the potential of generative artificial intelligence (AI) technology. In the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries, this innovative tool is being embraced to revolutionize their education sectors. By harnessing the power of AI, GCC nations aim to improve education outcomes for current students and create a skilled workforce prepared for future job demands.
In this blog post, we will delve into the role of AI in education, its potential economic impact, and how GCC countries are leveraging this transformative technology.
The Potential of AI in Education
Consultancy firm PwC predicts that AI could contribute a staggering $15.7 trillion to the global economy by 2030, with the MENA region expected to benefit by $320 billion. Saudi Arabia is poised to witness the largest contribution in real terms, while the UAE is projected to experience the most significant relative impact.
Additionally, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, and Qatar are expected to see a collective contribution of $45.9 billion by 2030. These figures highlight the immense economic potential of AI integration in the region.
GCC Countries Leading the Way
Several GCC countries have already taken proactive measures to embrace AI and prepare their economies for its integration. The UAE became the first country to appoint a minister of state for AI in 2017, signalling its commitment to invest in the field. Qatar published its National AI Strategy in 2019, outlining its vision and objectives.
Saudi Arabia unveiled its National Strategy for Data and AI in 2020, with ambitious goals of attracting $20 billion in local and foreign investment by 2030. These strategic initiatives underline the determination of GCC nations to leverage AI for economic growth.
The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the shift towards e-learning and the adoption of educational technology (ed-tech). GCC countries, having embraced ed-tech, are now prime examples of AI integration in education. AI not only supplements classroom learning but also enables the creation of personalized learning experiences.
In the UAE, plans are underway to implement AI chatbot tutors that generate content to enhance student learning.
Preparing Tomorrow’s Workforce
While concerns persist regarding job losses due to AI and automation, industry experts argue that AI adoption will also create new employment opportunities. In the MENA region, around 45% of existing work opportunities could be automated, just below the global average. GCC countries are addressing this challenge by organizing vocational training programs to equip their populations with the necessary skills.
Saudi Arabia, for instance, aims to train 20,000 data and AI specialists by 2030, aligning with its Vision 2030 goals. Bahrain’s Smart Coders initiative, on the other hand, plans to train 10,000 Bahrainis to enter the workforce as programmers by 2027.
In conclusion, The integration of AI in education holds immense potential for GCC countries as they strive to diversify their economies and enhance educational outcomes. By embracing AI technologies, these nations can prepare their current generation of students for the jobs of tomorrow and contribute to the global economy. If you’re interested in exploring the possibilities of AI in education, we encourage you to discover our AI solutions for schools and higher education.