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Digital FDI: AI Ambitions vs. Availability of AI Talent

Mind the tech gap: the AI divide in Europe

Only a handful of European cities host a sizable population of highly-coveted artificial intelligence (AI) engineers, leaving most of the continent scrambling to catch up.

London, the birthplace of Alan Turing, who is considered one of the founding figures of modern computer science and AI, is home to about 24,600 AI engineers, according to figures from venture capital firm Sequoia Capital. The city’s AI cluster features major employers in the AI space of the likes of Google DeepMind and a flourishing community of AI start-ups that can find in the city both the capital and the talent they need to scale-up.

“There are a number of great universities and apprenticeships here in the UK that allow us to bring some of the best talent into the company and into our partner ecosystem,” Vishal Marria, the company’s CEO of Quantexa, a UK decision intelligence firm, told fDi after the unveiling a $105m hub for research and development in AI solutions in the UK capital in July.

“With its wealth of talent, Europe is positioning itself as a leader in the accelerating world of AI,” reads the report. “While talent is amassing at the tech giants, these talent pools become ‘aircraft carriers’ as entrepreneurial employees inevitably depart to start their own companies, generating yet more demand for AI skills. With assertive policy incentives in the pipeline, anyone with a stake in AI is keeping their eyes on the region.”


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