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Artificial intelligence

AI technology is flourishing in the Basel Area

Local world leading companies are paving the way in applying AI to revolutionize their industries. Examples are Roche and Novartis and a vibrant cluster of data science service providers working with them in the life sciences sector or the insurance company Baloise.

The AI ecosystem in the Basel Area encompasses educational programs, world-leading conferences, business collaborations and research institutes that together provide the data, tools and insights needed to allow businesses to adopt and grow the future of AI.

According to the Digitalization Atlas, Basel-Stadt is one of the three largest clusters for advanced digitalization technologies in Switzerland, covering artificial intelligence, encryption, big data, cloud computing and virtual reality.

An international beacon of AI knowledge

On an international level, the Basel Area leads the way with a vibrant AI research ecosystem that includes academic institutions such as the Swiss Tropical Institute, University of Basel, Botnar Center for Child Health, and ETH D-BSSE.

Multiple world leading conferences focusing on artificial intelligence are held in Basel every year. These include the Intelligent Health Summit and the Bio Data World Congress bringing together the global leaders of their respective fields to connect with C-suite executives and AI enthusiasts. The Annual Healthtech Investment Forum brings together investors and Digital Health & Medtech companies.

Main fields of focus

Health Technology

Drug Development


Industry 4.0


Key benefits


The Department of Mathematics and Computer Science at the University of Basel is home a world-leading AI researchers. Key areas of focus are automated planning and intelligent problem solving. The University of Basel also hosts sciCORE, a center of competence for scientific computing, providing infrastructures and services for high-performance computing, as well as storage and processing of scientific data.

The University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland (FHNW) is working on a number of unique new artificial intelligence applications, as well as on issues around ethical handling of data and AI. They have, for example, created the aiHealthLab, the Laboratory of Artificial Intelligence in Health, which mission is to apply artificial intelligence in order to set standards, understand mechanisms and guide decisions in healthcare.

Other notable research groups applying AI in their specific research fields include:

  • The Department of Biosystems Science and Engineering at ETH (D-BSSE)
  • Friedrich Miescher Institute for Biomedical Research (FMI)
  • The Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH)

Unique density

The Basel Area is home to many companies and institutions that are expanding their AI capabilities either in-house or by cooperating with external partners, creating a thriving and dynamic ecosystem for discovery and collaboration.

For example:

  • Cross industry collaborations: a notable example is a multiyear alliance between Novartis and Microsoft is focused on using AI to transform how medicines are discovered, developed and commercialized
  • Cross sector collaborations: take for example a project where government, academia, and industry are joining forces to evaluate land usage through aerial imaging using state-of-the-art machine-learning algorithms
  • Non-profit-organizations: the Basel-based Fondation Botnar champions the use of AI and digital technology to improve the health and well-being of children and young people in growing urban environments around the world

Talent pool

The next generation of AI talents are educated in the Basel Area. The University of Basel offers degree programs in computer science as well as a doctoral program in data analytics.

The University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland is offering specialized programs ranging from artificial intelligence focused on economic issues to drug development and personalized healthcare. Through their part-time degree programs one focus is on up-skilling industry experts with data science tools.

Furthermore, there are already more than 11,000 people working in the field of ICT and data science in the Basel Area.

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