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Alan Turing Institute

Scottish universities have an opportunity to bid for up to £42m of funding to create a new Alan Turing Institute to deliver new research and education initiatives in the data sciences.

The Institute aims to ensure that the UK remains at the forefront of research into the analytical methods, which underpin our ability to exploit publicly or privately owned large datasets.

The Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) has asked for expressions of interest from universities to join the joint venture that will deliver the Institute.

Alan Turing was a British mathematician, wartime code-breaker and pioneer of computer science. Born in 1912, Turing was influential in the development of computer science and helped formalise the concepts of “algorithm” and “computation”.

During World War II, Turing was a leading wartime code-breaker and worked at Bletchley Park, the Government Code and Cypher School, where he made five major advances in the field of cryptanalysis, including specifying the bombe, an electromechanical device used to help decipher German Enigma encrypted signals.

After the war, Turing held high-ranking positions in the mathematics department and later the computing laboratory at the University of Manchester. He was a pioneer in artificial intelligence and in his 1950 paper, “Computing machinery and intelligence”, proposed an experiment known as the “Turing Test”. This is a test of a machine’s ability to exhibit intelligent behaviour indistinguishable from that of a human.

The call for expressions of interest is scheduled to close on 30 October 2014. More information can be found on the EPSRC website:

http://www.epsrc.ac.uk/funding/calls/turinginstituteeoinotice/

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