Maine Well-Positioned to Leverage Artificial Intelligence to Bolster Economy

January 31, 2023 | President’s blog

Brian Whitney MTI President

Last Friday, more than 400 people gathered at the Roux Institute in Portland for the release of a report on the “State of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Maine.”  The 68-page report provides a great baseline on the status of AI use in Maine and “aims to establish an understanding of how artificial intelligence is being used throughout Maine’s key economic pillars of healthcare and life sciences, manufacturing, natural resources, education, and financial and insurance services.”

While a case of COVID kept me away from the in-person gathering, I was thrilled to read the digital report following its release.  It does a wonderful job highlighting the “challenges and opportunities that exist in the fields of AI and data science in Maine.”  It also, perhaps unintentionally, underscores the outsized influence that the Maine Technology Institute (MTI) has had in moving the AI needle in Maine.

There are a number of meaningful ties between MTI and the report.  First, the indefatigable Matt Hoffner, MTI’s E-Resident lead, was a valuable contributor to the effort, “providing vital historical context and background about technology in Maine.”  Matt’s keen insights are featured throughout the report but specifically noted on page 7 regarding “The Changing Workforce,” page 17 related to “Healthcare & Life Sciences,” and in the acknowledgement section on page 64.

Another of MTI’s E-Residents, John Karp, was also actively engaged in the effort and served on the State of AI in Maine Advisory Committee throughout the project.  I want to thank both John and Matt for their leadership, insights, and contributions to the effort.

In addition to the direct MTI contributions from Matt and John, it was also deeply gratifying to read about the countless MTI portfolio companies and partners that are leading the way on AI and data science in Maine.  Companies like RockStep Solutions, KinoTek, Running Tide, Introspective Systems, New England Marine Monitoring, HighByte, MEDRhythms; research labs like The Jackson Laboratory, Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences, and MDI Biological Laboratory; and partners like UMaine, Roux Institute, Maine Center for Entrepreneurs, Dirigo Labs, and the Gulf of Maine Research Institute are all prominently featured for their background and experience in AI.

Long story short, I encourage you to read the report to learn more about the existing AI landscape in Maine.  I am thrilled that MTI has played a meaningful role in the existing AI infrastructure in Maine and look forward to watching how the continued efforts of MTI companies, research labs, and partners will help shape the future of Maine’s economy.