Joint industry/Govt taskforce to consolidate Ireland’s lead in big data

24 Jun 2013

PCH International’s Liam Casey, Google’s John Herlihy, Eishtec’s Heather Reynolds and the new Irish State CIO Bill McCluggage will join senior department officials in a new big data taskforce, which will include the piloting of two public service big data projects.

The Minister for Jobs, Innovation and Enterprise Richard Bruton told a EMC and Enterprise Ireland big data conference that the big data market is growing at a rate of 40pc per year.

McCluggage and the private-sector technology leaders will be joined by officials from Bruton’s own department as well as the CSO, IDA Ireland, Science Foundation Ireland and the National Standards Authority of Ireland.

The taskforce will have flexibility to co-opt additional members from the public and private sector to reflect specific areas of focus and sectoral expertise. To ensure balanced representation across industry, Government and research systems, it is envisaged that a number of other appointments will be made to the taskforce in the context of the big data pilot projects that are established. The first formal meeting of the taskforce will take place in July.

Big data world leader

Bruton said he believed the taskforce will have the insight and the leadership to make Ireland a world leader in the big data sector.

“A key part of the Government’s plan for growth and jobs is identifying areas where we believe Ireland has distinct advantages compared to other countries, and taking steps necessary to ensure that we realise our potential for employment in those areas,” Bruton said.

“Data analytics is one such sector, and the Government believes that between our climate, skills base and existing strengths in ICT, we have the potential to reap substantial benefits in terms of jobs and growth from the global expansion of this sector.

“Already this year we have established a technology centre to bring researchers and businesses together to generate products and services that can create jobs in this sector, and announced a €1m initial investment from the State to support this research programme,” Bruton said.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years