Business News

400 leading scientists descend on Dublin for major data conference

By Business & Finance
26 March 2014

Over 400 leading international scientists and researchers are in Dublin today for a major global conference on data. The Research Data Alliance (RDA) Conference, which takes place at Croke Park, will explore important issues relating to the building of societal and technological bridges which can help increase the exchange of data globally.

The conference is a joint endeavour between Ireland and Australia, and representatives of both Governments will open the conference later today. Delegates will be welcomed by both Minister of State for Small Business, John Perry TD and the Australian Ambassador to Ireland, Her Excellency Dr Ruth Adler.

Minister Perry said: “For SMEs and start-ups, data sharing can enable important cost savings and the advancement of innovative new discoveries. With more than 80% of the data generated by scientists and researchers around the world currently not being shared, often due to technical challenges in converting, accessing and storing it in the right place and right format, the focus of today’s conference is an important one.”

The conference will focus on exploring a range of issues across a variety of sectors. For example, it will examine the importance of data sharing for the development of agriculture globally, the development of a common global framework for the management of marine data and how to address the needs of the overall scientific community in collaboratively utilising large volumes of data.

Ireland’s chief scientific adviser to the Government, Professor Mark Ferguson, and Australia’s chief scientist, Professor Ian Chubb AC, will also address delegates.

Professor Ferguson said: “This is an important conference from the point of view of Ireland’s strategic focus on the area of data analytics. It will help Irish research bodies to contribute to international scientific debates, and to encourage industry-informed research and foster further academic-industrial collaborations.”

Two Irish research centres, Insight Centre for Data Analytics and the Digital Repository of Ireland, aided in the organisation of the conference.

This third RDA Conference is co-organised by RDA-Europe, Australian National Data Service, the Digital Repository of Ireland and Insight and has received financial support from Science Foundation Ireland (SFI), the Irish Research Council, Failte Ireland,, and Microsoft Ireland.