How much processing power do various nations have on hand to drive their AI strategy? An international trade group aims to find out.

What’s new: The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) is launching an effort to measure the computing capacity available in countries around the world. The organization, which serves 37 member nations, wants to help leaders invest wisely in AI by giving them a sense of their computational assets and how they compare to their peers.

How it works: A task force led by Nvidia vice president Keith Strier will include around 30 policy makers, researchers, hardware experts, and data center operators.

  • The task force will develop a framework for benchmarking national and regional processing resources.
  • Once the framework is in place, they’ll survey each country, focusing on government agencies and national AI clouds. They will omit military capabilities, commercial services, and edge devices.
  • It’s unclear whether the survey will include public-private partnerships, such as Google’s collaboration with Aramco, Saudi Arabia’s state-run oil company, to provide cloud infrastructure for large companies.

Behind the news: The project is part of OECD’s One AI initiative, which also classifies AI systems, develops trustworthy AI, and crafts guidance on AI policies. The organization developed a set of AI principles that 40 nations had signed as of June.

Why it matters: The OECD has cataloged over 300 AI policy initiatives across 60 countries, but the computing power available to each is hugely unequal. A tool that helps policymakers see where investment is most needed could help them set sensible targets.

We’re thinking: Governments have an incentive to improve their standard metrics, such as gross domestic product. Companies that sell processing power have an incentive to encourage governments to boost those metrics by investing in computing infrastructure. If this dynamic provides more resources to AI researchers, we’re all for it.


Subscribe to The Batch

Stay updated with weekly AI News and Insights delivered to your inbox