Spanish companies above the European average in Artificial Intelligence and Big Data adoption

The 2021 Situation Report on Artificial Intelligence and Big Data has recently been published; a report on the status, prospects, challenges and opportunities that these technologies currently offer to citizens. At present, three indicators of technology use in companies stand out: type of technology, machine learning through big data (4%); by size, large companies (18%), and by sector, tourist companies (14%), according to the ONTSI report published last April. The report also points out that, although national figures for AI adoption are modest in almost all parameters, Spain is slightly above the EU27 average.

This report, published by DISRUPTIVE, the Spanish Technology Platform for Disruptive Technologies of the Association of Science and Technology Parks of Spain - APTE, highlights a series of objectives that should be met in Spain before 2025 as part of the national plans that seek to encourage the adoption of Big Data and Artificial Intelligence by the wider population. Thus, Digital Spain 2025 aims to implement the use of AI-BD in at least 25% of companies by that year; the National AI Strategy will allocate 600 million euros between 2021-2023 for the development of inclusive, sustainable and citizen-centric AI, and the state Recovery Plan includes Digital Transformation as one of its cross-cutting axes. These national strategies are complemented by a very rich ecosystem, supported by the State Secretariat for Digitalization and Artificial Intelligence of the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Digital Transformation.

Unfortunately, there are some downsides to this. To date, the study highlights that the results of the studies are biased and the samples are still poorly defined; human-machine interaction can still advance much further; and access to large amounts of data is still complicated to address. It is certainly a big challenge, but the opportunities are also tangible: the volume of data has increased by 530% in three years, from 33 to 175 ZB; the data economy in the EU27 is worth €829 billion, almost three times as much as in 2018; data professionals in the Union have almost doubled - from 5.7 to 10.9 million - in that period, and 65% of the population already has basic digital skills.


The report also concludes with some use cases that highlight the importance of these technologies at present and in the future, such as the application of Big Data in Catalonia for decision-making in the agricultural sector, the development of social robotics platforms to support neurological rehabilitation therapies, or the creation of an AI algorithm capable of identifying the reason a baby is crying and that helps in the diagnosis of serious disorders.

No doubt, there is still a long way to go, which poses as an excellent opportunity for all companies that begin to adopt these technologies in their processes. If you believe that Big Data or AI can bring significant added value to your company, do not hesitate to contact the AIR Institute, we will be glad to help you.