Google unveiled plans to spend €25 million on AI skills and training in Europe, primarily targeted at underserved and vulnerable communities, as part of a wider initiative on the continent to widen access to emerging technology.

The cash will come from the company’s charitable arm, with funding available across the region. An initial €10 million chunk has been set aside specifically for upping workers’ AI skills.

Allocation will be conducted in collaboration with not-for-profit body Centre for Public Impact. Organisations will be able to apply on behalf of communities to receive training on foundational AI in “local languages”.

The funding will be delivered under Google’s newly minted AI Opportunity Initiative for Europe, which also comprises increased backing for start-ups and the expansion of existing free online foundational AI training sessions into a greater number of languages.   

In a blog, Google EMEA president Matt Brittin said AI “must be built by, and accessible to, everyone” if it is to deliver broad benefits, adding the company aimed to “support people and countries to be successful in seizing the opportunity of” the technology.

“Europe can lead the way in harnessing AI to create a strong and equitable economy”, Brittin explained, citing potential to deliver “more productive industries, more meaningful work and many new kinds of jobs”.