Stock Groups

Google’s Australia investment could boost the nation’s A.I. scene


Picnics are held at the Harbour Bridge in Kirribilli, Sydney on September 19, 2021. For people who are fully vaccinated, the restrictions on Covid-19 have been lifted in NSW.

James D. Morgan | Getty Images News | Getty Images

The reputation of New York City, London and Montreal as centers for AI research has been earned over time.

Sydney and Melbourne, Australia’s biggest cities, are not. This could change.

GoogleGoogle Research Australia has announced that it is establishing a lab in Sydney to conduct research on Monday. 1 billion Australian dollar ($729 million) investment in Australia. It will conduct research on everything, from AI to quantum computing.

CNBC Australia spoke out in support of the decision. They said that Australia has had few opportunities over the years for AI gurus.  

CNBC spoke with Stephen Merity from Australia, who is an AI researcher and now lives in San Francisco Bay Area. He said that Google should’ve launched Google Research Australia many years ago. Merity also stated that Australia has many prominent figures in this field.

He said that almost everyone had to move to Australia in order to have opportunities. “Those who stayed, such as those at Google Sydney, were not well-utilized.”

Google has a few projects underway in Sydney, but its research is much more limited than the Mountain View headquarters, London, Zurich, Tokyo, and Tokyo.

Jonathan Kummerfeld from the University of Sydney told CNBC, “Until very recently none of the large technology companies in Australia had labs.”

AmazonA lab was opened in Adelaide while OracleAnd IBMAI Labs have been established in Melbourne. Some of these include FacebookAnd TwitterAlthough they have locations in Australia, there aren’t many AI researchers working at these offices.

Kummerfeld said, “The greater the Australian industrial research ecosystem grows, then more businesses will be open their doors.”

He said that university departments had seen a strong growth in recent years due to rising enrollments in computer sciences. However, more faculty equals more postdocs, which means there are more PhD students. But, it’s still a small percentage of permanent jobs.

New Sydney headquarters