06 December 2023

Release: 2023 Government AI Readiness Index reveals which governments are most prepared to use AI

Government AI Readiness Index 2023

Government AI Readiness Index 2023

Global findings show diverse AI strategies and international collaboration, but also disparities in tech sector and digital infrastructure 

MALVERN, UK — Public policy consulting firm Oxford Insights today released the 2023 Government AI Readiness Index, ranking 193 governments around the world on how prepared they are to implement AI in the delivery of public services. 

This year, users can directly compare across countries, regions, and income groups using Oxford Insights’ interactive data dashboard. The report and dashboard are freely accessible here. 

Commenting on the release of this year’s index, Richard Stirling, CEO of Oxford Insights, said: ‘Over the past year generative AI has taken the world by storm. It is more important than ever for governments to get a grip on this technology and decide how and where they want AI to change their country. Taking stock of where you are and how you compare is an essential first step in that process. We hope that the 2023 Government AI Readiness Index prompts governments to do just that.’

Global findings

The USA ranks first in the index with Singapore in second and the United Kingdom in third. Finland, Canada, France, the Republic of Korea, Germany, Japan, and the Netherlands round out the top ten most AI ready countries. 

The number of AI strategies released per year is trending downward, but the picture looks more diverse. Half of the AI strategies published or announced in 2023 come from low and lower middle income countries, and Rwanda is the first low income country to publish an AI strategy.

The digital divide remains a global challenge. Scores in the Data and Infrastructure pillar of the index show a substantial difference across country income groups and regions. 

In the technology sector, there is a disparity between high income countries and everyone else, though some large middle income economies punch above their weight. High income countries score much higher than countries in any other income group in the Technology Sector pillar, though large middle income countries like Malaysia and the BRIC countries outperform. 

There has been increased international collaboration on AI in 2023, especially around AI governance and ethics. We’ve seen international cooperation on AI governance at the global and regional level, and AI is now part of the international development agenda. 

Background

In 2023, artificial intelligence (AI) was in the headlines more than ever. Generative AI breakthroughs, major developments in the field of AI regulation like the European Union’s AI Act, and a significant increase in AI-related summits globally have put this technology in the spotlight. The transformative potential of AI is undeniable, with governments worldwide acknowledging its impact. 

Governments are not only working to regulate AI and foster AI innovation, but also striving to integrate this technology into public services. However, understanding how to ensure that AI is adopted effectively for the public good remains a challenge. Oxford Insights’ annual Government AI Readiness Index attempts to address this challenge, asking: how ready is a given government to implement AI in the delivery of public services to their citizens? 

About Oxford Insights

Oxford Insights is a public policy consulting firm committed to making technology work for the public good. It combines new thinking on technology and leadership with experience getting things done in government to increase the value and impact of public services. With focus areas in AI, emerging technologies, and open data alongside transparency, open government, and public service delivery, Oxford Insights works with organisations to ask the right questions and solve real problems. For more information or to get in touch, visit oxfordinsights.com 

About the Government AI Readiness Index

Now in its sixth edition, the Government AI Readiness Index is an annual report produced by Oxford Insights that seeks to answer the question: how ready is a given government to implement AI in the delivery of public services to their citizens? This year, the index ranks 193 countries on 39 indicators across 10 dimensions, which make up the three pillars of Government, Technology Sector, and Data & Infrastructure. The Government AI Readiness Index is a trusted source of data on the intersection of government and AI, and it has been cited by governments (the United Kingdom, Australia, Vietnam, Uzbekistan), NGOs (World Economic Forum, UN Industrial Development Organisation), and academic researchers (Policy & Internet journal) alike. 

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