Yahoo! Among NUI Galway Partners Improving Web Content

Yahoo! Among NUI Galway Partners Improving Web Content-image

Friday, 26 June 2009

Through an international collaboration, NUI Galway's Digital Enterprise Research Institute (DERI), has announced a new way to enhance web content. Working with AdaptiveBlue, Faviki, Freebase, Yahoo!, Zemanta and Zigtag, the team at DERI have launched Common Tag, a new tagging format for web pages. Over 100 researchers at DERI focus on the Semantic Web, which is the next incarnation of the internet and is expected to be more intuitive because data will be defined and linked. According to Dr Alexandre Passant, postdoctoral researcher in DERI, "The possibilities offered by Common Tag are really exciting. When people start using it to tag their data, lots of new usages will emerge. For instance, it will be easier to find content related to a particular music genre, a movie or a location. Common Tag is another concrete step to enable the Semantic Web, a vision of the Web that we are working on in DERI at NUI Galway for the last five years". Peter Mika from Yahoo! Research emphasised: "Semantic tagging is an important next step in the evolution of the Web. When we add semantic meaning to tags, the content that is tagged becomes significantly easier for machines to understand. That in turn allows for the development of more intelligent applications for aggregating, searching, and browsing the Web". On a website, tags are a kind of label which is embedded behind and image or piece of text. Tags have long been used tags to organise, share and search for content on the Web. However, in the absence of a common tagging format for Web content, the benefits of tagging have been limited. Individual places like New York City are often represented by multiple tags (e.g., "nyc", "new_york_city", and "newyork"), making it difficult to organise related content. In addition, it isn't always clear what a particular tag represents – does the tag "jaguar" represent the animal, the car company, or the operating system? The Common Tag format was developed to address these shortcomings and help everyone including end users, publishers, and developers to get more out of Web content. With Common Tag, content is tagged with unique, well-defined concepts, for example, everything about jaguar the animal is tagged with one concept for jaguar the animal. The Common Tag format also provides access to useful metadata that defines each concept and describes how the concepts relate to one another. For example, metadata for the Barack Obama concept indicates that he's the President of the United States and that he's married to Michelle Obama. At NUI Galway, DERI was established in 2003 by Science Foundation Ireland as a Centre for Science and Engineering Technology (CSET) with a focus on researching Web Science, sensors and their use in enabling networked knowledge. Currently on its second major five-year research programme, DERI's research output is being used by its eight CSET industry partners to maintain competitive advantage, contribute towards next generation product development and as innovation enablers. DERI is also actively engaged in technology spin-outs and licensing of its leading edge technologies. Since its establishment it has since grown to over 120 people and has acquired significant additional research funding from sources such as the European Union Framework Programmes, Enterprise Ireland and industrial partnerships". Dr Passant added, "Together with previous work done here regarding SIOC (Semantically-Interlinked Online Communities), and a project like FOAF (Friend of a Friend) in which DERI also participates, Common Tag now provides a complete ecosystem to represent social data on the Web in a meaningful and understandable way". -ends-

>> Read full story about Yahoo! Among NUI Galway Partners Improving Web Content

Conferring of Honorary Degrees at NUI Galway

Conferring of Honorary Degrees at NUI Galway-image

Friday, 26 June 2009

(Leagan Gaeilge) The conferring of Honorary Degrees took place at NUI Galway today (Friday, 26 June). Those honoured were from the spheres of engineering Liam Connellan, business Brian Joyce, public service Pádraic MacKernan, philanthropy Anna Ó Coinne and education Professor Philip O'Leary. NUI Galway President, Dr James J. Browne, speaking at the conferring ceremony said: "NUI Galway is fortunate to be associated with many outstanding honorary graduates throughout its history, and those being honoured this year form a particularly distinguished group. Each has been outstanding in their own way, and NUI Galway is very pleased to be in a position to recognise these exceptional individuals". Liam Connellan A native of Strokestown, Co Roscommon, Liam Connellan has had a deep involvement in the engineering profession for over forty years and has served as President of the Institution of Engineers of Ireland; was a founding member of the Irish Academy of Engineering and has served as President of the Academy. He also served as the first Chairman of the National Roads Authority from 1994 to 2001, and was President of the Royal Dublin Society from 1995 to 1998. Liam has been Chairman of companies within the Veolia Environment Group in Ireland and is Chairman of the Energy Institute in the Republic of Ireland. He is a member of the Board of the Peter McVerry Trust which assists homeless young people. Brian Joyce Born in Headford, Co. Galway, Brian Joyce, returned to his Alma Mater to collect his honouray degree in recognition of extensive contribution to the world of business. Brian is a former Chief Executive of Board Bainne and has served as a Board member and Chairman of numerous household name companies. These include the Education Building Society, Allegro, Irish Life, IDA, Tara Meats, Williams Groups, National Hardware, Celtic Anglian Water, Clancourt Holdings, CIÉ and the Mater Private Hospital. Brian continues to influence business in Ireland as he is presently Chairman of Clancourt Holdings and a director of Kingspan. Brian was the recipient of a Bank of Ireland Alumni Award for Business from NUI Galway in 2008. Pádraic MacKernan Pádraic MacKernan was born in Limerick and joined the Department of External Affairs in 1964. He was Vice-Consul of Ireland in Boston from 1965 to 1968 and Deputy Consul-General in New York from 1968 to 1974. Pádraic was successively Counsellor, Assistant Secretary and Political Director in the Department of Foreign Affairs and a regular member of the Irish Delegation to the United Nations until his appointment as Ambassador of Ireland to the United States and Mexico in 1985. Pádraic was appointed Permanent Representative to the European Union in Brussels in 1991 and returned to Dublin as Secretary-General of the Department of Foreign Affairs in 1995. He became Ambassador to France in 2001, a post he held until his retirement in 2005. Anna Ó Coinne In 1989, local business woman Anna Ó Coinne became involved in raising funds to finance research into Breast Cancer being pioneered by Professor Fred Given at the National Breast Cancer Research Institute (NBCRI) in Galway. Working with a voluntary group, Anna became chairperson of the Finance and Planning Committee of the NBCRI. This fund raising group has raised over € 12 million for the NBCRI. Anna's stewardship and attention to detail has allowed the organisation to develop to have an outstanding contribution in the breast cancer research space. During 2010 the Institute will move to a new purpose built Translational Research Centre being constructed by NUI Galway on the grounds of University College Hospital. This project is being financed by major philanthropic donations and includes a major contribution from NBCRI. Professor Philip O'Leary Third generation Irish of mostly Munster extraction, Professor Philip O'Leary is currently Professor of English in Boston College which has been to the fore for decades for the excellence of its Irish Studies programme. His work in publishing, promoting and debating Irish Studies was described today as 'gargantuan', and Professor O'Leary was lauded for bringing Modern Gaelic literature to a global audience. Of particular interest is Professor O'Leary's series on Modern Gaelic literature from 1881 to 1951. This four volume work is 'easily the most ambitious, wide-ranging and comprehensive analysis of Modern Gaelic literature ever undertaken and unlikely to be surpassed'. Today's graduands join the ranks of previous honorary conferees which include among many others Nelson Mandela, Hilary Clinton, Christy O Connor Snr and Jnr, Enya, Sean Purcell, the late Merv Griffin and Anjelica Huston. Céimeanna Oinigh á mBronnadh in OÉ Gaillimh (View in English) Bronnadh Céimeanna Oinigh inniu (Dé hAoine, an 26 Meitheamh) in OÉ Gaillimh. Bhain na daoine ar bronnadh na céimeanna oinigh orthu le réimse na hinnealtóireachta (Liam Connellan), an ghnó (Brian Joyce), leis an tseirbhís phoiblí (Pádraic MacKernan), le réimse an daonchairdis (Anna Ó Coinne) agus le réimse an oideachais (an tOllamh Philip O'Leary). Ag an searmanas bronnta dúirt an Dr James Browne, Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh: "Tá an t-ádh ar OÉ Gaillimh go bhfuil an oiread sin céimeanna oinigh bronnta ar chéimithe den scoth le blianta fada anuas aici, agus is cinnte gur grúpa ar leith iad an cúigear atá roghnaithe i mbliana. Rinne gach duine díobh éacht ar a bhealach féin, agus tá OÉ Gaillimh an-sásta go bhfuil sí in ann aitheantas a thabhairt do na daoine eisceachtúla seo." Liam Connellan Tá breis agus 40 bliain caite ag Liam Connellan, arb as Béal na mBuillí i gCo. Ros Comáin ó dhúchas dó, ag plé le gairm na hinnealtóireachta agus i rith an ama sin ceapadh é mar Uachtarán ar Institiúid Innealtóirí na hÉireann; bhí sé ar bhunaitheoirí Acadamh Innealtóireachta na hÉireann agus chomh maith leis sin chaith sé seal ag feidhmiú mar Uachtarán ar an Acadamh sin. Ba é an chéad Chathaoirleach é, chomh maith, a ceapadh ar an Údarás um Bóithre Náisiúnta idir 1994 agus 2001, agus ba é a bhí ina Uachtarán ar Chumann Ríoga Bhaile Átha Cliath idir 1995 agus 1998. Bhí Liam ina Chathaoirleach ar chuideachtaí éagsúla sa Veolia Environment Group in Éirinn agus tá sé ag feidhmiú mar Chathaoirleach ar an Institiúid Fuinnimh i bPoblacht na hÉireann faoi láthair. Is ball é de Bhord Iontaobhas Peter McVerry a chabhraíonn le daoine óga atá gan dídean. Brian Joyce D'fhill Brian Joyce, a rugadh in Áth Cinn, Co. na Gaillimhe ar a Alma Mater lena chéim oinigh a fháil mar aitheantas ar a bhfuil déanta aige do shaol an ghnó. Is iar-Phríomhfheidhmeannach ar an mBord Bainne é Brian agus bhí sé ina chomhalta Boird agus ina Chathaoirleach ar go leor cuideachtaí atá i mbéal an phobail. Ina measc sin tá Education Building Society, Allegro, Irish Life, IDA, Tara Meats, Williams Groups, National Hardware, Celtic Anglian Water, Clancourt Holdings, CIÉ agus Ospidéal Príobháideach an Mater. Tá tionchar ag Brian i gcónaí ar chúrsaí gnó in Éirinn agus tá sé ina Chathaoirleach faoi láthair ar Clancourt Holdings agus ina stiúrthóir ar Kingspan. Bhain Brian Gradam Alumni Bhanc na hÉireann don Ghnó amach ó OÉ Gaillimh in 2008. Pádraic MacKernan Chuir Pádraic MacKernan tús lena shaol oibre sa Roinn Gnóthaí Eachtracha i 1964. Bhí sé ina Leaschonsal na hÉireann i mBostún idir 1965 agus 1968 agus mar Leaschonsal-Ginearálta i Nua-Eabhrac idir 1968 agus 1974. Áirítear i measc na ról a bhí ag Pádraic sa Roinn Gnóthaí Eachtracha Comhairleoir, Rúnaí Cúnta agus Stiúrthóir Polaitiúil agus bhí sé ina bhall rialta de Thoscaireacht na hÉireann chun na Náisiún Aontaithe go dtí gur ceapadh mar Ambasadóir na hÉireann do na Stáit Aontaithe agus do Mheicsiceo é i 1985. Sa bhliain 1991 ceapadh Pádraic mar Bhuan-Ionadaí an Aontais Eorpaigh sa Bhruiséil agus i 1995 d'fhill sé ar Bhaile Átha Cliath mar Ard-Rúnaí sa Roinn Gnóthaí Eachtracha. Ceapadh é mar Ambasadóir na Fraince in 2001, post a bhí aige go dtí go ndeachaigh sé ar scor in 2005. Anna Ó Coinne Sa bhliain 1989 thosaigh an bhean ghnó áitiúil Anna Ó Coinne ag bailiú airgid chun an taighde a bhí ar bun ag an Ollamh Fred Given ar Ailse Chíche san Institiúid Taighde Náisiúnta ar Ailse Chíche (NBCRI) a mhaoiniú. Le linn d'Anna a bheith ag obair le grúpa deonach, ceapadh í ina Cathaoirleach ar Choiste Airgeadais agus Pleanála NBCRI. Tá breis agus €12 milliún bailithe ag an ngrúpa seo don NBCRI. A bhuíochas le maoirseacht Anna agus an aird a thugann sí ar mhionrudaí, tá forbairt tagtha ar an eagraíocht agus tá an-obair á déanamh aici sa spás taighde ar ailse chíche. Am éigin i rith 2010 bunófar an Institiúid in Ionad Taighde Aistritheach nua atá á thógáil ag OÉ Gaillimh i láthair na huaire ar thailte Ospidéal Choláiste na hOllscoile. Tá an tionscadal seo á mhaoiniú trí shíntiúis dhaonchairdiúla agus trí infheistíocht shuntasach ón NBCRI féin. An tOllamh Philip O'Leary De bhunadh na Mumhan go príomha, trí ghlúin siar, an tOllamh Philip O'Leary atá ina Ollamh le Béarla in Boston College, coláiste atá ar thús cadhnaíochta leis na scórtha bliain as feabhas an chúrsa sa Léann Éireannach ann. Tugadh obair 'fathaigh' ar a shaothar foilsithe, agus ar an obair a rinne sé chun an Léann Éireannach a chur chun cinn agus chun díospóireacht a chothú faoi, agus tugadh ardmholadh dó as lucht léitheoireachta domhanda a aimsiú do litríocht na Nua-Ghaeilge. Tá spéis ar leith ag daoine i sraith an Ollaimh O'Leary faoi litríocht na Nua-Ghaeilge ó 1881 go 1951. Tá an saothar seo ina bhfuil ceithre imleabhar ar an 'anailís is dúshlánaí, is leithne agus is cuimsithí ar Nua-Litríocht na Gaeilge a rinneadh riamh agus ní bheidh a shárú le fáil'. Cuirfear céimithe oinigh an lae inniu leis an liosta daoine ar bronnadh céim oinigh orthu go dtí seo, ina measc, Nelson Mandela, Hilary Clinton, Christy O Connor Snr and Jnr, Enya, Sean Purcell, Merv Griffin, nach maireann, agus Anjelica Huston. -críoch-

>> Read full story about Conferring of Honorary Degrees at NUI Galway

Secondary School Students Get a Taste of Science at NUI Galway

Secondary School Students Get a Taste of Science at NUI Galway-image

Thursday, 25 June 2009

The College of Science at NUI Galway welcomed prospective students from second level schools to its Science Experience Workshop this week. This engaging programme allowed 30 students to delve into a wide range of scientific disciplines and explore future career opportunities. Students took part in hands-on activities and experienced working in world class research facilities and institutes. Some of the institutes visited by the students were Applied Optics, the Environmental Change Institute, the National Centre for Biomedical Engineering Science and the Regenerative Medicine Institute. Throughout the workshop, attendees had the opportunity to 'shadow' scientists and gain an invaluable insight into a wide range of scientific disciplines. According to Dr Mark Foley, Vice Dean of Communications and Strategy, College of Science, NUI Galway: "With the CAO change of mind deadline looming Science Experience Workshop provided an excellent forum whereby students got information on the diverse range of undergraduate programmes available at NUI Galway. Students got to investigate the differences between various denominated and undenominated offerings. Panel discussions with current students and staff allowed the exchange of information with prospective students. Participants also had the chance to see the state-of-the-art teaching, research and sporting facilities. This workshop offered participants the chance to experience life on campus while learning about Science and interacting with students, staff and their peers from across Ireland". For further information on the College of Science or future Science Experience Workshops, call 091 492182 or visit http://www.nuigalway.ie/science/news.html -ends-

>> Read full story about Secondary School Students Get a Taste of Science at NUI Galway

NUI Galway Professor Says Ireland's Universities Must Teach Innovation

NUI Galway Professor Says Ireland's Universities Must Teach Innovation-image

Thursday, 25 June 2009

An NUI Galway professor has said Ireland needs a new breed of engineering graduate. These new engineering professionals, as well as being properly educated in their technical discipline, would also be provided with a significant exposure to the principles of business and finance, and to the process of innovation and entrepreneurship. Gearóid Ó Laighin, Professor of Electronic Engineering at NUI Galway, said: "Ireland s economic future requires the creation of Irish owned companies, led by engineers who can, through invention and innovation, create economic success. This process is a central pillar of the 'Smart Economy'". While innovation and entrepreneurship are traditionally seen as innate skills, there is plenty of evidence that providing graduates with the correct mix of skills can boost their capabilities as innovators and entrepreneurs. Professor Ó Laighin says a cross-disciplinary approach to engineering education can provide a massive boost to the creation of the entrepreneurial spirit. He commented: "Ireland is perfectly positioned to create the equivalent of Canada's Research In Motion company, creators of the omnipresent BlackBerry. By adopting new methods to educate engineers in our universities and by stepping out beyond traditional programme boundaries, we can produce more adaptable graduates, with the appropriate skill set to create innovative market-led products for worldwide markets". Electronic devices now represent a massive productive sector worldwide with production in 2009 expected to exceed $1 trillion. Electronic engineering knowledge is used to create systems and devices across a broad range of sectors from life saving medical devices, computer hardware, entertainment systems, mobile communications, automotive electronics, industrial automation, consumer electronics, transportation systems and renewable energy systems and devices. Professor Ó Laighin is the driving force behind the new Engineering Innovation – Electronic degree programme at NUI Galway. The four-year bachelors or five-year masters programme is a joint initiative of NUI Galway's Colleges of Engineering & Informatics and Business, Public Policy & Law. The new course will deliver graduates with the skills and capabilities to start up their own company to design niche electronic products for world-wide markets. Established companies will also benefit from the availability of a new type of Electronic Engineer who has the capability to stimulate and support innovation and growth in those organisations. According to Professor Ó Laighin, "From the beginning of their studies, students will build expertise in electronic engineering while at the same be exposed to the principles of business and finance and the process of innovation and entrepreneurship in parallel. We feel that this approach to the education of young electronic engineers will make a powerful difference". The new degree programme from NUI Galway has received endorsements from IDA Ireland, Enterprise Ireland, Engineers Ireland, Shannon Development, Power Electronics Industry Group, Irish Medical Devices Association and Microelectronic Industry Design Association Ireland. NUI Galway is also offering a new four-year honours degree in Energy Systems Engineering which will have its first intake this September. The programme will produce professional accredited engineers, qualified to drive the emerging energy related industries. Engineering students at NUI Galway will also benefit from the University's new state-of-the-art Engineering Building which is due for completion in 2011. -ends-

>> Read full story about NUI Galway Professor Says Ireland's Universities Must Teach Innovation

HP Ireland announces the winners of the 2009 Innovation in Education Grant Initi

HP Ireland announces the winners of the 2009 Innovation in Education Grant Initi-image

Tuesday, 23 June 2009

Today HP Ireland announced the 2009 Ireland winners of the Innovation in Education Grant Initiative, which rewards universities and secondary schools across EMEA for their innovative teaching and learning projects. This year's Ireland winners were NUI Galway and Coláiste Iognáid, Galway. Each institution will receive a mobile technology solution, such as tablet PCs, laptops, printers, access points, and a cash donation valued at approximately 100,000 USD HP list price (approximately 75,500 EUR). They will also be invited to join a network of educators around the world who are working to design the future of high-tech education through which they can share ideas and best practices in areas such as online learning, virtual worlds and simulations. "Innovation in education is vital to developing the next generation of high-tech innovators, and is central to the success of the smart economy in Ireland. Whenever possible, we feature HP technology in ways that support pioneering teaching and learning practices, especially to enhance achievements in math and science or other subjects essential to student success in IT careers. I'd like to congratulate both NUI Galway and Coláiste Iognáid on being selected for their enlightening approaches to innovative teaching and learning," said Martin Murphy, Managing Director, HP Ireland. Commenting, Dr James J. Browne, President of NUI Galway, said: "Here at NUI Galway, we are committed to the highest quality teaching and learning experience for our students and have strongly integrated this priority into the institutional agenda. The success of Dr James Cruickshank and his team in winning a HP innovation in Education Grant highlights this culture of innovation and learning excellence. I commend James and his colleagues for their work in finding new and innovative ways to improve the teaching of mathematics through this initiative, and others such as our new BA programme in Maths and Education which is educating a new generation of maths teachers. Improvement in the teaching of mathematics is key to Ireland's success as a smart economy, and we in NUI Galway are delighted to play our part in developing this vital element of national competitiveness". NUI Galway was selected for its project that plans to implement a SecondLife Maths Support space to deliver one of its courses in its Bachelor of Arts in Mathematics and Education degree programme. As part of the project, all participating students will use eLearning Platforms such as Tablet PCs in conjunction with virtual environments such as Blackboard and SecondLife to monitor their development and teach while off campus during their teaching practice in secondary schools in West of Ireland. Coláiste Iognáid located in Galway city with over 600 students was selected for its commitment to making practical usage of technology in delivering the school curriculum. The aim is to create a roaming computer suite which would afford the maximum number of students and teachers a unique opportunity to achieve computer literacy and equip them for participation in the knowledge economy. This platform will allow students to access digitally provided content in an efficient and cost effective manner. The HP Innovation in Education Grant Initiative supports institutions in the EMEA region in launching innovative pilot projects in math, technology and science fields. HP's ultimate objective is to foster future leaders in the disciplines vital to HP's business. This year's winners include 50 academic institutions from 15 countries across EMEA. The grants given to universities aims to specifically enhance the engineering, computer science and IT degree programmes, while for secondary schools the aim is to improve student achievement, by using technology to redesign the learning experience. The grant winners were selected from proposals submitted by secondary schools and universities as part of the request for proposal process initiated by HP earlier this year. A jury of HP and education experts from HP's partner ISTE evaluated the submissions and selected those that best integrated technology at the intersection of teaching and learning and fostered innovation in education. -ends-

>> Read full story about HP Ireland announces the winners of the 2009 Innovation in Education Grant Initi

National Success for NUI Galway Engineering Student

National Success for NUI Galway Engineering Student-image

Monday, 22 June 2009

Kevin Burke from Athenry, Co. Galway, an Electronic and Computer Engineering student at NUI Galway, has won the Accenture Academic Innovation in Computing Award. Kevin's submission for the award was based on the use of mobile phone technology to monitor driver behaviour. He received €2000 and a commemorative trophy from Accenture. The award winning submission was based on the development of a system to remotely monitor driver behaviour using GPS and accelerometer functionality on off-the-shelf 3G mobile phone handsets. The prototype system is capable of detecting when and where drivers exceed driving speed limits and potentially to identify when they execute dangerous driving manoeuvres. The developed system, which was tested using handsets and network services sponsored by O2, also allows a user to monitor the occurrence of such events on an intuitive Google Map interface. Kevin's final year project supervisor, NUI Galway lecturer Liam Kilmartin, said: "What Kevin has very cleverly done is to capitalise on existing technology and take this functionality into another realm. The project is highly innovative and has great commercial potential. Kevin worked very closely with an Enterprise Ireland funded research team here at the College of Engineering and Informatics, so we are looking forward to seeing if and how this type of technology application can be developed further towards commercialisation". Kevin was one of eight short-listed national finalists in the competition which is open to both undergraduate and postgraduate students who have developed an innovative software solution as part of their studies. The winning submission was based on Kevin's final year project as part of Electronic and Computer Engineering at NUI Galway. NUI Galway now offers over a dozen undergraduate degrees in Engineering and Informatics, including new programmes in Energy Systems Engineering and Engineering Innovation – Electronic. -ends-

>> Read full story about National Success for NUI Galway Engineering Student

President of International Criminal Court to Visit NUI Galway

President of International Criminal Court to Visit NUI Galway-image

Friday, 19 June 2009

A five-day International Criminal Court Summer School at NUI Galway's Irish Centre for Human Rights opens tomorrow (Saturday, 21 June). The keynote address will be given on Sunday by Judge Sang-Hyun Song, President of the International Criminal Court (ICC). Now in its 10th year, the summer school is established as one of the premier intensive courses offered internationally on the important subject of the ICC. An independent, permanent court, the ICC tries those accused of the most serious crimes of international concern, namely genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes. "After the United Nations, the International Criminal Court is one of the most important international institutions. It is aimed at combating impunity for atrocities and it is at the forefront of a broader movement of achieving accountability", commented Professor William Schabas, Director of the Irish Centre for Human Rights at NUI Galway. Professor Schabas will be among a number of prominent speakers to address the event, including Professor David Scheffer who served as the first United States Ambassador-at-Large for War Crimes Issues. During the summer school at NUI Galway, students are provided with a detailed knowledge of the establishment of the Court, its applicable law, its structures and its operations. Lectures will also address related issues in international criminal law, including universal jurisdiction and immunities. The Irish Centre for Human Rights at NUI Galway saw its other major summer school, on 'Minority Rights, Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights Law', come to an end today. Over 50 participants were provided with an overview of the legal, political and philosophical issues pertaining to international human rights law and its relationship to minority rights and the rights of indigenous peoples. Summer schools are one element of the work carried out by the Irish Centre for Human Rights at NUI Galway which, since its establishment in January 2000, has developed a global reputation for excellence in the field of human rights teaching, research and advocacy. -Ends-

>> Read full story about President of International Criminal Court to Visit NUI Galway

NUI Galway academic Edits Book for Amnesty International

NUI Galway academic Edits Book for Amnesty International-image

Friday, 19 June 2009

Former Dean of Law at NUI Galway, Donncha O'Connell, has edited a book to mark the sixtieth anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) for Amnesty International. Donncha, who will be a Visiting Research Fellow at the London School of Economics for the next academic year, is the Senior Irish member of FRALEX, the legal expert group that advises the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights based in Vienna, and was the first full-time Director of the Irish Council for Civil Liberties from 1999-2002. The book will be launched in Dublin by broadcaster and Sunday Tribune columnist, Claire Byrne, on Tuesday 23 June. 60 Years, 30 Perspectives: Ireland and the UDHR, which is published by New Island Books, is a collection of essays by thirty influential social commentators examining the relevance of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights to modern Irish society. It features, among others, Archbishop of Dublin, Dr Diarmuid Martin, Ombudsman Emily O'Reilly, Sportsman Sean Óg Ó hAilpín, NUI Chancellor and President of the Irish Human Rights Commission, Dr Maurice Manning, Fr Peter McVerry, homelessness activist, Poet, Theo Dorgan as well as NUI Galway academics Dr Kathleen Cavanaugh and Dr Vinodh Jaichand of the Irish Centre for Human Rights. The book also contains a photo essay by renowned Irish photographer Derek Speirs, and can be purchased in bookshops or ordered online at: www.amnesty.ie/60years Announcing the publication of the book Executive Director of Amnesty International Ireland, Colm O'Gorman, said: "In the middle of an economic recession, political upheaval and distrust in the institutions of the past, this book offers a fresh and timely critique of modern Ireland. Using the Universal Declaration of Human Rights as its touchstone, the book challenges readers to question whether we have a free press in Ireland, why human trafficking is tolerated if slavery is not and why children and people living in poverty are still voiceless in our society". In his foreword to the book Donncha O'Connell wrote: "Cost-benefit analyses applied to something like the UDHR are certainly speculative and probably futile. The pro-human rights consensus evident in this collection of essays is probably not indicative of a wider societal compact other than one informed by indifference or shallow acceptance. Many of the ideas promoted in these essays and many of their underlying assumptions would be hotly contested by those who engage seriously and not so seriously with human rights debates". -Ends-

>> Read full story about NUI Galway academic Edits Book for Amnesty International

Third Level Institutions Collaborate to Provide Major Boost to Research and Inno

Third Level Institutions Collaborate to Provide Major Boost to Research and Inno-image

Thursday, 18 June 2009

(Leagan Gaeilge) A major agreement to boost research and innovation in the Border Midland and Western (BMW) region of the country has been signed in Athlone by the heads of seven higher education institutions. This is the first time that the third level sector has come together to adopt a BMW-wide approach to research and innovation. The institutes of technology in Athlone, Dundalk, Galway-Mayo, Letterkenny and Sligo, together with NUI Galway and St Angela's College, Sligo will combine their strengths under the auspices of Líonra, the higher education network in the region. The joint strategy will see collaboration taking place across a number of core areas, including: biomedical science and engineering; environment, marine and energy; software development and applications; health services research; social entrepreneurship; socioeconomic sciences and humanities; and food and agriculture. The Líonra agreement envisages research policy reflecting the socioeconomic needs of the region and responding to the expectations of the local economy. It also calls for collaboration between the academic partners and industry which will strengthen the ability of the sector to attract funding. Convenor of Líonra, Professor Ciarán Ó Catháin, said that the agreement will enable the BMW region to play a complete role within Ireland's knowledge economy. "This collaborative agreement multiplies the research strengths of our individual institutions for the betterment of the region. It will see the development of close relationships with enterprise and the market-facing sector. Through aligning our research strengths with their needs, it will give local companies a distinct competitive advantage. "We are putting a comprehensive commercialisation strategy in place which will enable the innovation and research ideas developed through this partnership to reach the marketplace. This is critical to the creation of a knowledge economy and to the restoration of sustainable, rewarding employment in the region", Professor Ó Catháin stated. According to President of NUI Galway, Dr James J. Browne, "This agreement creates the framework and rationale for collaboration. It also meets the future demands of Ireland's higher education system by offering a model of coordinated coherence, as called for recently by Tom Boland, Chief Executive of the Higher Education Authority. Líonra, as a network of seven higher education institutions, has created a system that is responsive to national needs and is delivering real value from complementary facilities. "The development of research clusters in strategic areas resonates with the requirements of key industries for this country," President Browne continued. "The medical device industry, for example, is concentrated in the BMW region with companies such as Élan, Medtronic and Boston Scientific. This research agreement has identified collaboration in the biomedical science and engineering domain as a thematic priority, which mirrors the industrial strength of the region. It pools our collective research capacity and capability to provide a coherent response to the priorities identified by Ibec and the Irish Medical Device Association". The Executive Director of the Irish Research Council for Science, Engineering & Technology (IRCSET), Martin Hynes, also welcomed the announcement. Mr Hynes commented that "Coherence in the higher education sector is vitally important. This is a critical development in ensuring visibility for this research and for making people aware of research career opportunities available in these domains". According to Enterprise Ireland's Regional Manager for Research and Development and Technology Transfer, P.J. O'Reilly, "Stimulating innovation, technology transfer and commercialisation is a central plank of the agreement and also reflects Enterprise Ireland's strategic objectives. This will involve collaborating with industry to understand their R&D needs to build close mutually beneficial relationships and to ensure that the results of research are transferred into the local socioeconomic fabric". To deliver these research goals, the seven institutions are committed to creating networks and clusters to provide common access and to make the optimum use of major equipment and R&D facilities. They will also establish centres that will concentrate on applied research and will create critical mass in leading edge technologies. The increased involvement of academic staff in research is core to the initiative, as is increasing the PhD output from the sector and providing supportive career paths for researchers. Líonra was established in 2001 to develop effective collaborative responses by the third level sector to the developmental needs of the BMW region. Institiúidí Tríú Leibhéal ag Comhoibriú lena chéile ar mhaithe le Taighde agus le Nuálaíocht a chur chun cinn i Réigiún na Teorann, Lár na Tíre agus an Iarthair (View in English) Is i mBaile Átha Luain a shínigh ceann na seacht n-institiúid ardoideachais sa tír comhaontú suntasach a bhfuil sé mar aidhm leis borradh a chur faoin taighde agus faoin nuálaíocht i Réigiún na Teorann, Lár na Tíre agus an Iarthair. Is é seo an chéad uair riamh a bhfuil an earnáil tríú leibhéal ag comhoibriú lena chéile agus é mar aidhm cur chuige éifeachtach i ndáil le taighde agus le nuálaíocht a fhorbairt agus a chur i bhfeidhm i Réigiún na Teorann, Lár na Tíre agus an Iarthair trí chéile. Oibreoidh institiúidí teicneolaíochta Bhaile Átha Luain, Dhún Dealgan, na Gaillimhe-Mhaigh Eo, Leitir Ceanainn agus Shligigh i dteannta OÉ Gaillimh agus Coláiste San Aingeal, Sligeach faoi choimirce Líonra – líonra ardoideachais an réigiúin. Faoin gcomhstraitéis seo, beidh comhoibriú ar siúl i roinnt réimsí tábhachtacha lena n-áirítear: eolaíocht agus innealtóireacht bhithleighis; an timpeallacht, an fharraige agus fuinneamh; forbairt bogearraí agus feidhmchlár; taighde ar sheirbhísí sláinte; fiontraíocht shóisialta; eolaíochtaí socheacnamaíocha agus daonnachtaí; agus bia agus talmhaíocht. Tá sé mar aidhm le comhaontú Líonra beartas taighde a fhorbairt a bheidh bunaithe ar riachtanais shocheacnamaíocha an réigiúin agus a bheidh in ann déileáil go héifeachtach le hionchais an gheilleagair áitiúil. Gné eile den chomhaontú seo go mbeidh comhoibriú ar bun idir comhpháirtithe acadúla agus an tionscal, rud a chuirfidh go mór le cumas na hearnála maoiniú a fháil. Dúirt tionólaí Líonra, an tOllamh Ciarán Ó Catháin, go gcuirfidh an comhaontú ar chumas Réigiún na Teorann, Lár na Tíre agus an Iarthair ról iomaíoch a bheith aige i ngeilleagar eolasbhunaithe na hÉireann. "Cuirfidh an comhaontú seo go mór le cumas taighde ár n-institiúidí aonair rud a rachaidh chun tairbhe an réigiúin trí chéile. Cabhróidh an comhaontú seo le forbairt dlúthchaidrimh idir na hearnálacha fiontraíochta agus an margadh. Cruthófar buntáiste iomaíoch do chuideachtaí áitiúla trína láidreachtaí taighde a ailíniú lena gcuid riachtanas. Chomh maith leis sin, dúirt an tOllamh Ó Catháin go bhfuil sé "beartaithe straitéis tráchtálaithe chuimsitheach a chur i bhfeidhm a chinnteoidh go bhforbrófar nuálaíocht agus smaointe taighde tríd an gcomhpháirtíocht seo – nuálaíocht agus smaointe a rachaidh i bhfeidhm ar an margadh. Baineann fíorthábhacht leis seo i ndáil le geilleagar eolasbhunaithe a chruthú agus fostaíocht inbhuanaithe, fhiúntach a chothú sa réigiún". Deir Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh, an Dr James J. Browne, "Soláthróidh an comhaontú seo an creat agus an réasúnaíocht a theastaíonn chun comhoibriú a chur chun cinn. Chomh maith leis sin, freagraíonn sé do na héilimh a bheidh ar chóras ardoideachais na hÉireann amach anseo trí shamhail de chomhleanúnachas comhordaithe a chruthú, mar a bhí á éileamh ag Tom Boland, Príomhfheidhmeannach an Údaráis um Ard-Oideachas le déanaí. Tá córas cruthaithe ag Líonra – líonra de sheacht n-institiúid ardoideachais – a fhreagraíonn do riachtanais náisiúnta agus a thugann luach ar airgead trí úsáid a bhaint as áiseanna comhlántacha". Chomh maith leis sin, dúirt an tUachtarán Browne, go bhfuil "forbairt na ngrúpaí taighde i gceantair straitéiseacha ag teacht le riachtanais phríomhthionscail na tíre. Sampla amháin é tionscal na bhfeistí leighis de thionscal atá bunaithe i Réigiún na Teorann, Lár na Tíre agus an Iarthair. Tá cuideachtaí ar nós Élan, Medtronic agus Boston Scientific ag dul i dtreis san earnáil seo. Tá deiseanna comhoibrithe aimsithe ag an gcomhaontú taighde seo in earnáil na heolaíochta agus na hinnealtóireachta bithleighis, ó tharla rath a bheith ar an earnáil áirithe seo sa réigiún. Deis atá ann ár gcumas agus ár n-acmhainn taighde a thabhairt le chéile ar mhaithe le freagairt go cinnte do na tosaíochtaí a d'aithin Ibec agus an Irish Medical Device Association". D'fháiltigh Martin Hynes, Stiúrthóir Feidhmiúcháin Chomhairle Taighde na hÉireann don Eolaíocht, Innealtóireacht & Teicneolaíocht (IRCSET) roimh an scéala seo freisin. Dúirt an tUasal Hynes go mbaineann "fíorthábhacht le comhleanúnachas san earnáil ardoideachais. Forbairt thábhachtach é seo d'fhonn a chinntiú go dtugtar aird ar an taighde seo agus d'fhonn a chinntiú go bhfuil tuiscint ag daoine ar na deiseanna gairme atá ar fáil sna hearnálacha seo". Deir P.J. O'Reilly, Bainisteoir Réigiúnach (Taighde agus Forbairt agus Aistriú Teicneolaíochta) Fhiontraíocht Éireann go bhfuil "ról lárnach ag cruthú nuálaíochta, aistriú teicneolaíochta agus tráchtálú sa chomhaontú mar aon le léargas a thabhairt ar chuspóirí straitéiseacha Fhiontraíocht Éireann. I gceist san obair seo beidh comhoibriú leis an tionscal d'fhonn teacht ar thuiscint ar a gcuid riachtanas Taighde & Forbartha agus caidreamh a théann chun tairbhe gach páirtí a fhorbairt, mar aon lena chinntiú go dtéann torthaí an taighde i bhfeidhm ar an ngeilleagar socheacnamaíoch áitiúil". D'fhonn na spriocanna taighde seo a sheachadadh, tá na seacht n-institiúid tiomanta do líonraí agus do ghrúpaí a chruthú ionas go mbeidh deis acu an tairbhe agus an úsáid is fearr agus is féidir a bhaint as an bpríomhthrealamh agus as na háiseanna taighde agus forbartha atá ar fáil. Lena chois sin, bunófar ionaid a bheidh dírithe ar thaighde feidhmeach agus déanfar an-dul chun cinn i dteicneolaíochtaí nua. Tá ról lárnach ag rannpháirtíocht comhaltaí foirne acadúla sa tionscnamh seo, mar aon leis an líon PhD atá á bhronnadh san earnáil seo agus deiseanna gairme tacaíochta a sholáthar do thaighdeoirí. Bunaíodh Líonra in 2001 le cinntiú go mbeadh an earnáil tríú leibhéal ag freagairt go cuí do riachtanais forbartha Réigiún na Teorann, Lár na Tíre agus an Iarthair. -Críoch-

>> Read full story about Third Level Institutions Collaborate to Provide Major Boost to Research and Inno

Device that cuts through plaque in human arteries wins Enterprise Ireland's O

Device that cuts through plaque in human arteries wins Enterprise Ireland's <i>O-image

Thursday, 18 June 2009

The inventor of a tiny device containing micro-blades and a balloon that can cut though blockages in human arteries has won Enterprise Ireland's One to Watch Award 2009. The device was invented by Dr Bruce Murphy during research carried out while based at the National Centre for Biomedical Engineering Science, NUI Galway. Called a 'flexi-cutting sheath', the device, which contains tiny concealed blades that are exposed by inflating a balloon, is safer and more effective than existing medical devices used to clear blockages in arteries. Dr Bruce Murphy, a mechanical engineer with expertise in vascular disease research, was presented with the award by An Tánaiste Mary Coughlan T.D. at the Enterprise Ireland Applied Research Forum 2009 in the Guinness Storehouse today. Congratulating Dr Murphy on his win, the Tánaiste said: "Irish industry is already benefiting enormously from the knowledge and technology generated in our third level institutions. Dr Murphy is an excellent example of this technology transfer system in action. With support from Enterprise Ireland, he identified a need for a better medical device, developed his unique solution and linked up with entrepreneur Tim McSweeney to produce the device for sale in the global market for peripheral vascular devices which is worth $1.9 billion. It is this type of high value company that the Government, through Enterprise Ireland is focused on and I am pleased to learn that seven new high value companies like this one have already emerged in 2009" she said. The device will help the 500,000 people worldwide that suffer from end-stage renal disease every year. Patients with this disease require dialysis 2-3 times per week which can result in blockages in their bloodstream. Dr Murphy's flexi-cutting sheath can be used to clear these blockages in a safer, more effective way than existing devices. Another use of the device is in the treatment of peripheral arterial disease, which results in around 1,000 people in Ireland every year having a limb amputated because the main artery in their arm or leg gets blocked by hardened plaque which cuts off the blood supply. By analysing existing products, Dr Murphy found that current cutting devices have the potential to damage blood vessels as the device is being removed from the body. To address the problem, he developed his balloon mounted flexi-cutting sheath with a protective silicone sheath which wraps around the tiny blades on the device while it is being navigated to and from the blocked site inside an artery by a physician. Because the blades can be retracted back into the flexi sheath when the balloon is deflated, Dr. Murphy has made the process safer for patients. The flexi-cutting sheath is protected by a series of patents filed by NUI Galway. Dr Neil Ferguson from Ignite, NUI Galway's Technology Transfer Office, believes that this invention will improve patient care and is delighted to see it being commercialised. He said: "The patents that protect this invention from other firms developing copy-cat devices are amongst the 114 patent applications filed by NUI Galway over the last 3 years. During this period we have been very successful in generating over 36 licence agreements to both existing and start-up companies. More importantly, we have spun out 7 start-ups over the same period which plays an important role in the development of our economy". Dr Murphy, now at TCD, and business partner Tim McSweeney, are getting support from Enterprise Ireland to set up their new company later this year in Galway to manufacture the device for sale in a niche market worth €100 million. The company will employ up to 10 people initially. Tim Mc Sweeney is no stranger to the medical device sector having played a leading role in establishing the presence of US giant Boston Scientific in Galway in 1994. The award was presented in front of 250 researchers attending Enterprise Ireland's Applied Research Forum 2009, an event which focused on moving more valuable intellectual property and new technologies into companies through the national technology transfer system. -Ends-

>> Read full story about Device that cuts through plaque in human arteries wins Enterprise Ireland's O

<< < 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 64 65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98 99 100 101 102 103 104 105 106 107 108 109 110 111 112 113 114 115 116 117 118 119 120 121 122 123 124 125 126 127 128 129 130 131 132 133 134 135 136 137 138 139 140 141 142 143 144 145 146 147 148 149 150 151 152 153 154 155 156 157 158 159 160 161 162 163 164 165 166 167 168 169 170 171 172 173 174 175 176 177 178 179 180 181 182 183 184 185 186 187 188 189 190 191 192 193 194 195 196 197 198 199 200 201 202 203 204 205 206 207 208 209 210 211 212 213 214 215 216 217 218 219 220 221 222 223 224 225 226 227 228 229 230 231 232 233 234 235 236 237 238 239 240 241 242 243 244 245 246 247 248 249 250 251 252 253 254 255 256 257 258 259 260 261 262 263 264 265 266 267 268 269 270 271 272 273 274 275 276 277 278 279 280 281 282 283 284 285 286 287 288 > >>

Press office

E info@nuigalway.ie
T +353 (0)91 493361

Press member?

Visit our press centre

Connect & share

Connect with us:

Facebook icon 32px YouTube icon 32px LinkedIn icon 32px RSS Icon 32px

Bookmark and Share