Ryan commits to ‘Your Country Your Call’ digital/green ideas

3 Sep 2010

Communications Minister Eamon Ryan TD has pledged to commit to the winning digital and green ideas submitted by the finalists of the Your Country Your Call campaign.

The five ideas are as follows:

Establishing an intellectual property (IP)-based financial securities market in Ireland

The proposal deals with positioning Ireland centrally in the evolution of the knowledge economy by setting up an Intellectual Property Services Centre (IPSC) anchored around an IP-based exchange with significant potential to create long-term employment opportunities and revenue streams.

Developing the opportunity for Ireland to become a Global Media Hub

The proposal sets out initially to create an Irish Content Industry Association which would then drive the development of a cultural and creative quarter, a Media Park to attract global content industries, and creating the necessary legislative and regulatory environment to make Ireland a leading global centre for the creation and distribution of digital content.

Creation of a ‘Superbrand’ to market Irish tourism and food

The proposal is to create a new ‘Superbrand’ to market Irish (all Island) tourism and food under the one banner – together with some practical and creative thinking in terms of implementation. The focus of the proposal is to build out job opportunities in both sectors.

The Data Island Strategy

Through the development of a Green Mega Data Centre Freezone and an International Innovation Area – The Data Island Strategy sets out to build a world-beating entrepreneurial and innovation ecosystem around Digital Services and to position Ireland at the forefront of its associated spin-off industries.

Installation of solar PV electrical generators on existing wind farms

The proposal is to install large-scale solar photovoltaic panels on existing wind farm sites, utilising the existing land, electrical infrastructure and grid connections.

Towards a sustainable economy

The final winner is to be announced on 17 September. There will be two €100,000 prizes. The second phase of the campaign will be to implement the ideas with a fund of €500,000.

However, Ryan today committed to fulfil the ideas that fall within his department’s remit.

“Our sustainable economic success will be a collective effort from all sections of Irish society. It will require Government, the private sector and the public at large to get behind a new kind of economy,” Ryan said.

He said the next economy will be digital and green. “I see that all five finalists have identified Ireland’s advantage in these areas. I will meet with all the finalists and promise to take on board their ideas and discuss implementation with them.

“This country needs a new direction and new ideas. We need to brand our country internationally as progressive and moving away from the legacy of boom and bust. Establishing Ireland as a centre for green energy and traded digital services has been my policy since entering Government.”

“(President Mary) McAleese understands this, as do the judging panel who have shortlisted these ideas for the full final analysis. We need positive, innovative leadership at this time and they are stepping up to the plate,” Ryan said.

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