Artificial Intelligence (AI) could add USD 957 billion to the Indian economy by changing the nature of work to create better outcomes for businesses and society, research data from an Accenture report showed.

The report titled 'Rewire for Growth', explores the strength of India's AI innovation ecosystem relative to other G20 economies across five key pillars- universities, startups, large businesses, policy makers and multi-stakeholder partnerships.

AI has the potential to increase India's annual growth rate of gross value added (GVA) by 1.3 percentage points, lifting the country's income by 15 percent in 2035, the report added.

"AI's transformative power can be compared to the advent of computing itself, and there is strong early evidence that AI can play a key role in unlocking socio-economic value in India. The time to act is now. With the right investments AI can create a flywheel effect 'liberating' people to create long term economic and societal value," Rekha M. Menon, senior managing director and chairman, Accenture India said.

Major Indian technical universities have been pioneering fundamental research in AI, but are not doing enough to strengthen the AI ecosystem around them, unlike their global counterparts such as Cambridge and Oxford in the UK, the report stated emphasizing that although AI startups have witnessed higher than average growth in India since 2011, the size of funding received is substantially smaller than in the United States and China.

In line with global trends, large businesses will play a key role in unlocking the economic value of AI, with more than 88 percent of businesses in India surveyed by Accenture earlier this year, expecting to make moderate-to-extensive investments in one or more AI-related technologies over the next three years.

The report suggests that to realize the full potential of AI, India needs concentrated effort at the national level, with collaboration between policy makers, civil society and the private sector to build an AI blueprint, bolster R and D, democratize data, prepare the next generation and embrace smart regulation.

"The economic boost will be driven by innovative AI technologies that enable people to make more efficient use of their time and do what humans do best - create, imagine and innovate new things. What's needed is a clear, long-term vision, and a multi-stakeholder action plan that balances growth with the ethical questions posed by AI," Menon added.

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