CALL FROM MINISTER CALLEARY FOR SMES TO AVAIL OF THE NEW HUBS
Dara Calleary T.D., Minister of State for Trade Promotion, Digital and Company Regulation and Enterprise Ireland (EI) are pleased to announce the establishment of CeADAR and ENTIRE as European Digital Innovation Hubs (EDIH), which brings the number of Irish Hubs that are operational to the full complement of four. The four Hubs based around the country will make up Ireland’s membership of the pan-European network of EDIHs.
The four Irish EDIHs consist of consortia of partners, mainly higher education institutions, with the expertise to drive the awareness and adoption of emerging digital technologies. The EDIHs will each focus on a particular area of expertise:
- FactoryXChange – IMR Mullingar – Manufacturing Digital Transformation
- Data2Sustain – WiSAR Lab, Atlantic Technological University – Digitalisation of operations, business processes and sustainability
- ENTIRE – Tyndall National Institute Cork – Internet of Things networks and sensors, cybersecurity and data analytics
- CeADAR – University College Dublin – Empowering Irish businesses to use AI
The EDIHs are “one-stop-shops” helping companies, in particular SMEs, become more competitive in their business, production processes, products or services and helping public sector organisations become more efficient. EDIHs provide access to research infrastructure, technical expertise and experimentation. They provide access to state-of-the-art laboratories where companies can “test before invest” in new digital technologies which will have significant business and societal impacts.
Speaking about the four hubs becoming operational, Minister Calleary said:
“I am delighted to announce that all four European Digital Innovation Hubs are now operational. The Hubs, with their nationwide network of partners, will present new opportunities for SMEs and public sector organisations across Ireland and beyond to embrace digitalisation, acting as a focal point for businesses to improve their capacity to adapt to a digital world.”
The Minister added:
“I call on all SMEs to engage with the Hubs and avail of the wide-ranging services they provide. The Hubs will help you overcome barriers to digitalisation, and adapt to the future of business locally and internationally.”
The establishment of Ireland’s EDIHs is a deliverable under the National Digital Strategy and represents an important step in the Government’s objective to drive digitalisation across the economy and society.
Welcoming the development, Marina Donohoe, Manager, Research and Innovation, Enterprise Ireland said
“Enterprise Ireland is delighted to see these four regional hubs fully operational. The European Digital Innovation Hubs have the potential to make a tremendous impact on our SMEs and public sector bodies and ensure that Ireland makes significant strides in digital adoption and digital transformation across all sectors. I look forward to the four hubs deploying their cutting-edge research and innovation skills to the benefit of Irish enterprise across the regions. They are already working with ambitious Irish companies to drive their research and innovation activity Enterprise Ireland is determined to see this engagement deepen in the future.
The European Union is investing over €700 million to co-fund an EU-wide network of hubs. Each Irish hub is set to receive annual funding of €1.9 million from a mixture of National Recovery and Resilience Facility and the DIGITAL Europe programme.
About European Digital Innovation Hubs
As part of the Digital Europe Programme, the European Commission, together with EU Member States, are establishing a network of European Digital Innovation Hubs (EDIHs) to support businesses and organisations in their digital transformation and to disseminate the latest advances in digital technologies, cybersecurity, Artificial Intelligence (AI) and High-Performance Computing (HPC).
As well as research/testing facilities, EDIHs will also provide other innovation services, such as financing advice, and the training and skills development necessary for a successful digital transformation. Environmental issues will be taken into account, in particular with regard to energy consumption and low carbon emissions. The EDIHs will be co-funded by Member States and the European Commission.
Contacts for the 4 EDIHs are available through their websites:
National Recovery and Resilience Plan (NRRP)
The National Recovery and Resilience Plan (NRRP) has been developed by the Government so that Ireland can access funding under the EU’s Recovery and Resilience Facility. Ireland is expected to receive more than €988 million in grants under the facility. The Recovery and Resilience Facility is the largest component of NextGenerationEU, the European Union’s response to the global pandemic. The aim is to help repair the immediate economic and social damage brought about by the pandemic and to prepare for a post-Covid Europe that is greener, more digital, more resilient and fit to face the future.
The European Commission’s Digital Europe Programme (DIGITAL) provides strategic funding to support projects in five key capacity areas:
- Artificial Intelligence (AI)
- Advanced digital skills
- Digital Innovation Hubs
The Programme has a planned overall budgetary allocation of €7.5 billion and aims to shape the digital transformation of Europe’s society and economy, bringing benefits to everyone, but in particular to small and medium-sized enterprises.
Dara Calleary, Data2Sustain, EDIH, ENTIRE, FactoryXChange,