Three Irish websites win big at the World Summit Awards

15 Oct 2015116 Shares

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A participant deep in thought at the CoderDojo Coolest Projects Awards, which were held in Dublin earlier this year

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Irish-based sites CoderDojo.com, Localauthorityfinances.com and PledgeSports.com have beaten off competition from websites from 178 countries at the UN-based World Summit Awards.

In all, there were over 40 categories at the World Summit Awards. The winners will receive their awards at the WSA Global Congress in Shenzen in February 2016.

CoderDojo.com, the website of the coding movement founded by James Whelton and Bill Liao in Cork in 2011, was the declared winner in the ‘E-Learning and Science’ category. Today, the CoderDojo movement is a not-for-profit organisation where, through a network of volunteers and kids teaching other kids, there are more than 800 dojos operating in 60 countries worldwide. Within Europe alone CoderDojo classes reach more than 25,000 students, and the organisation also runs the annual Coolest Projects Awards.

Localauthorityfinances.com was declared a winner in the ‘E-Government and Open Data’ category. The site was developed by the Dublin-based content marketing company Brightspark Consulting on behalf of Publicpolicy.ie, a think tank that works to promote better economic, social and environmental policies.

And PledgeSports.org was declared the winner of the ‘Entertainment and Lifestyle’ category. The site was established in 2014 to address the funding gap in sports in communities in Europe and the US and has helped raise money for equipment, travel expenses, competition entries and other costs that come with a sports career.

Irish sites punch above their weight

“The World Summit Awards are about recognising digital tools that are groundbreaking, truly innovative and might be said to inspire,” said Maryrose Lyons, founder of Brightspark Consulting.

“The idea is that if someone in Brazil – for example – saw a really great Irish site, they might get the idea to do something similar and for the social good.

“For a small country like Ireland to be winning three of the 40 awards this year is truly remarkable.  Over 386 nominations were received, and the winners come from 24 different countries.  So Ireland is really punching above our weight in this competition, and I think that’s testament to the fact that we have excellent digital and creative talent here.”

Digital world image via Shutterstock

Updated 2.15pm, 15 October 2015: This article was updated to reflect that CoderDojo now has 800 dojos in 60 countries worldwide.

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Editor John Kennedy is an award-winning technology journalist.

editorial@siliconrepublic.com