Call for Submissions for First IAIS Workshop on Cloud Computing Research

Call for Submissions for First IAIS Workshop on Cloud Computing Research -image

Wednesday, 14 August 2013

NUI Galway will host the first Irish Chapter of the Association for Information Systems (IAIS) Workshop on Cloud Computing Research and on Friday, 27 September. Entitled ‘Research and Practice in the Cloud: What is on the Horizon?’, the workshop welcomes national and international submissions comprising short structured two-page abstracts representing emerging, novel or partially-completed research on cloud computing. At the workshop we will work with the authors to create an architecture and propose a direction for the research. The deadline for submissions is Friday, 23 August, with further details at http://iaiswccr.eventbrite.ie. ‘Research and Practice in the Cloud: What is on the Horizon?’ will focus on the Irish national agenda for research on cloud computing, bringing together researchers and practitioners across the island of Ireland.  The workshop will also focus on the international research stage for cloud computing, providing a forum for the development of research from international authors. In September 2013, NUI Galway began a new Masters degree in Cloud Computing Research, which is already helping to shape the national agenda. This new degree provides a dedicated programme of advanced research on high-value, business-focused aspects of cloud computing. In the current year, students from Hewlett-Packard, Cisco and Eircom amongst others, are covering a number of important issues for businesses, including a study on business success factors for cloud services, a model for return-on-investment for strategic cloudsourcing, user interaction for mobile cloud business applications, Irish legal considerations for cloud strategies, user benefits of cloud services, in addition to other topics of importance to both large businesses and small SMEs. The workshop is supported by IAIS, the Irish Software Engineering Research Centre (Lero) and NUI Galway's Whitaker Institute, and is being jointly delivered by the Business Information Systems discipline and Lero at NUI Galway, and the Cloud Computing Services Innovation Centre at Hewlett-Packard. The workshop builds upon NUI Galway, Lero and Hewlett-Packard’s strengths in cloud computing. The University’s research on cloud computing has been published in international outlets, and cloud computing has become a core part of a large SFI-funded research team. Dr Tom Acton, Business Information Systems, NUI Galway, said: “We envisage receiving submissions across a range of cloud-related topics, from early-stage researchers to industry practitioners. All aspects of cloud computing are encouraged, with a particular focus on business needs, encompassing adoption, deployment, strategy, value, impact, business models, services, and so on. Also welcome are cloud-related topics such as the business management of big data, business analytics, and future trends.” The workshop is free and open to authors of accepted submissions, academics and industry persons working with cloud technologies. Online registration will be available from Saturday, 7 September at http://iaiswccr.eventbrite.ie. -ENDS-

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NUI Galway lecturer wins Apex ‘Grand Award’ for article on tablet repairability

NUI Galway lecturer wins Apex ‘Grand Award’ for article on tablet repairability-image

Wednesday, 14 August 2013

  IEEE Consumer Electronics Magazine article rates leading tablets on repairability and sustainability   Dr Peter Corcoran is a lecturer in NUI Galway’s College of Engineering & Informatics and Editor-in-Chief of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Consumer Electronics Magazine. The IEEE won 5 Apex awards but only one ‘Grand Award’, awarded for the “Repairability Smackdown’ feature by Peter Corcoran of NUI Galway and Kyle Wiens, CEO of iFixit.   The article assesses and rates leading tablets, Nexus 7, Kindle Fire HD, Galaxy Note 10.1 and the iPad 3 comparing their respective ease of repairability. The repairability of devices is important to prolong their life-cycle and conserve scarce resources used in their manufacture.   Dr Peter Corcoran says ‘The tablet computing sector is growing at a rate of adoption that is 10 times faster than that of the PC in the 1980s; 3 times faster than the rate at which people have signed up to Facebook since it went public in 2007. It’s an awful lot of tablets, 640 million by July of 2012 and more than 1 billion at the time of writing.’   He continued, ‘Sustainability and repairability are key issues given that the last thing that you think about with a 'new' device is how you are going to repair it. There is a strong commercial rationale for manufacturers to discourage the repair of devices; however the reality is that these new device use some quite rare elements in their display and battery subsystems. This article provides new insights into the latest of today's devices and gives consumers a new metric - the repairability score - to consider when buying their next device.’     Tablets consume considerable energy in their manufacture - a typical consumer device can take as much energy to manufacture as it will use in a 2-3 year life-cycle. This manufacturing/operating energy ratio is getting even bigger for today's low-power devices. Thus from a socio-economic perspective it makes a lot of sense to repair and thus extend the life-cycle of these devices as much as possible.   IFixit (www.ifixit.com) was established by the article’s co-author Kyle Wiens to solve this problem by providing a "repair manual for everything written by everyone". A team of expert fixers at iFixit lead by example, taking apart all of the latest consumer devices and figuring out how to do this safely and how to repair them effectively, from simple battery changing to full screen replacements.    Further information on the APEX awards at http://www.apexawards.com/313.htm    -ends-  

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Páirnéireacht Nua Fógraithe idir TG4 agus Ollscoil na hÉireann Gaillimh

Páirnéireacht Nua Fógraithe idir TG4 agus Ollscoil na hÉireann Gaillimh-image

Friday, 16 August 2013

Cosán úr i dtreo chraoladh náisiúnta á chruthú ag páirtnéireacht nua idir TG4 agus Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh   : Is iad mic léinn an BA agus MA/Dioplóma Iarchéime sa Chumarsáid in Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge,  An Cheathrú Rua, Co. Na Gaillimhe a dhéanfaidh tograí agus coincheapa físe a thabhairt chun forbartha do sceideal TG4 mar dhlúthchuid den fhoghlaim cleachtadh-bhunaithe ar na cúrsaí seo.  Beidh seans ag glúin nua chruthaitheach a gcuid scileanna scríbhneoireachta, láithreoireachta, ceamara agus eagarthóireachta a chleachtadh agus a chur os comhair lucht féachana náisiúnta. Tá ‘DEIS’ á thabhairt ar an scéim cheannródaíoch seo. Leag Micheál Ó Meallaigh, TG4, Eagarthóir Coimisiúnaithe na sraithe nua, béim ar thábhacht an naisc nua: “Tá sé tábhachtach go mbeadh nasc cruthaithe idir mic léinn cumarsáide agus craoltóirí le linn na gcúrsaí cumarsáide in áit a bheith ag brath ar thaithí a fháil ar an saol praiticiúil i ndiaidh an chúrsa. Is fiú an dá oiread CV a bhfuil ábhar craolta luaite air thar CV nach bhfuil air ach na gradaim atá bainte amach. Táimid thar a bheith sásta dul i bpáirtnéireacht le hAcadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge chun deis mar seo a chuir ar fáil do mhic léinn an BA agus an MA sa Chumarsáid. Is léiriú eile é an togra nuálach seo ar mhian TG4 oibriú i bpáirt leis an earnáil oideachais ag gach leibhéal.” Beidh suas le trí clár faisnéise á léiriú ag mic léinn Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge do TG4 i mbliana mar chuid den scéim nua físe seo ‘Deis’ le tacaíocht ó OÉ Gaillimh. I measc na n-ábhar a bheidh faoi chaibidil sna cláir i mbliana, tá: Nua-inseacht ar bhéaloideas agus pisreogra a bhaineann le peileadóirí Mhaigh Eo agus iad ag fiach ar Chorn Sam Mhig Uidhir; Léargas neamhghnách ar shaol iascairí ar bharr toinne ar Bhanc an Torcáin, 150 míle siar ó chósta na hÉireann; Agus bliain i ndiaidh do Katie Taylor an bonn óir a chrochadh léi abhaile as Londain, cuirtear staidéar spéisiúil inár láthair faoi bhanlaochra na dornálaíochta atá ag teacht chun cinn i gceantar Chonamara. Craolfar na scannáin seo ar TG4 ó Mheán Fómhar 2013 agus tá an Taoiseach Enda Kenny i measc na n-aíonna atá páirteach i mbliana. Anuraidh, craoladh an clár faisnéise, Buscáil, a léirigh Fearghal Ó Maolagáin, mac léinn iarchéime de chuid Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge; tá Fearghal anois tar éis coimisiún a fháil ó TG4 agus ón BBC le tacaíocht ón gCiste Craoltóireachta Gaeilge a bhuíochas den deis a fuair sé anuraidh: “Ba mhór an cuidiú do mo shaol ghairmiúl an bhliain a chaith mé in Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge.  Tríd an chúrsa, bhí an deis agam smaoineamh a fhorbairt agus clár a dhéanamh le tacaíocht ón Acadamh.  Anois tá mé ag tabhairt faoi clár a léiriú do TG4 agus BBC TÉ, tá an taithí fíor-luachmhar, agus is ón méid a d’fhoghlaim mé san Acadamh a bhfuair mé an deis seo.” Is iad Micheál Ó Domhnaill, Léiritheoir Teilifíse leis an gcomhlacht Gaeltachta Fíbín, agus Seán Breathnach, Feidhmeannach Cumarsáide le hOÉ Gaillimh a d’fhorbair an togra seo agus a bheidh ina Léiritheoirí Feidhmeacha ar na cláir. Tabharfaidh Ray Fallon agus Colm Ó Méalóid (OÉ Gaillimh) tacaíocht oiliúna agus forbartha nuair a bheidh an tsraith á léiriú. D’fháiltigh Dónall Ó Braonáin, Príomhfheidhmeannach Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge roimh ‘DEIS’ agus an nasc nua idir an Ollscoil agus TG4: “Tá TG4 ar thús cadhnaíochta maidir le samhlaíocht, físiúlacht agus cruthaitheach ó bunaíodh iad de bharr an luí atá léirithe acu leis an óige agus an nuálaíocht. Tiocfaidh mic léinn cumasacha ó OÉ Gaillimh chomh fada leo ar an gcosán seo agus tá súil againn ar fad go mbeidh a shliocht ar sceideal an stáisiúin amach anseo.” Tá Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge ag glacadh le iarratais ar an MA/Dioplóma Iarchéime (Cumarsáid) anois. Tuilleadh eolais ag www.acadamh.ie. -CRÍOCH- NUI Galway and TG4 Announce Broadcasting Initiative NUI Galway and TG4 create new pathway in national broadcasting   NUI Galway's BA sa Chumarsáid and MA/Dioplóma Iarchéime sa Chumarsáid students in Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, An Cheathrú Rua, Co. Galway will the opportunity to broadcast their work TG4 as part of a special initiative, ‘DEIS’. A unique enterprise, ‘DEIS’ will enable students of NUI Galway to showcase their talents in scriptwriting, production, post production and television presenting skills to a national television audience. TG4 Commissioning Editor Micheál Ó Meallaigh is a firm believer in cultivating links with third level institutions and their students: “It is important for third level media and communication students to build links with broadcasters during their courses as well as afterwards. A CV with a full broadcasting credit will be most useful in furthering their post university career. We are delighted to be associated with Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge in creating these opportunities for the students of the BA and MA sa Chumarsáid. TG4 welcomes such opportunities to build and develop with all levels of the education sector.” This year, up to three documentaries are being produced through the ‘Deis’ initiative for TG4’s upcoming schedule and amongst the topics included are: An examination of the superstitions linked to the Mayo GAA senior football team’s quest for the Sam Maguire Cup, which they have not been able to win since 1951. A fly on the wall study of the camaraderie and relationships that form on board a Galway fishing trawler as they spend a week on the Porcupine Bank, more than 150 miles off the west coast of Ireland. A portrait of Niamh Ní Chualáin, a young Connemara woman who hopes to emulate Katie Taylor in the often brutal world of women’s boxing. The documentaries will be broadcast from September 2013 and the Taoiseach, Enda Kenny feature among the interviewees. In 2012, NUI Galway graduate Fearghal Ó Maollagáin’s documentary Buscáil, in a pilot version of the initiative, was broadcast on TG4 to great acclaim. This year TG4, BBC Northern Ireland and the Irish Language Broadcast Fund have commissioned Fearghal to produce another documentary on a similar theme.  Fearghal said: “My year with Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge was of tremendous benefit in furthering my professional development. During my time on the course I was able to research, produce and present a television documentary that was subsequently broadcast on TG4.  Due to the support and guidance received from NUI Galway and Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, I’ve now been commissioned to film another documentary for TG4 and BBC NI.” Micheál Ó Domhnaill a producer with the Gaeltacht based production company Fíbín and Seán Breathnach a member of the teaching staff at NUI Galway are the executive producers of the series.  Ray Fallon and Colm Ó Méalóid of NUI Galway provided technical support during the production of the films. Dónal Ó Braonáin, Chief Executive of Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, NUI Galway welcomes the link with TG4 and the opportunities for student participation that it will entail: “TG4 lead the field in imaginative, innovative and creative programming and have a history of interacting with and developing new talent.  Students from NUI Galway will partner TG4 in producing exciting, interesting and thought provoking programming through the ‘Deis’ series.” For further information on the MA/Dioploma Iarchéime (Cumarsáid) or the BA sa Chumarsáid please visit www.acadamh.ie. -ENDS-      

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CAO Points Increase Significantly for Commerce and Science at NUI Galway

CAO Points Increase Significantly for Commerce and Science at NUI Galway-image

Monday, 19 August 2013

  34 NUI Galway courses increase CAO points, 15 courses by more than 20 points There has been a huge increase in demand for Commerce courses in NUI Galway with General Commerce increasing from 340 to 375 points.  Reflecting students’ awareness of the need for language mobility in a global jobs market Commerce (International) with French has increased by 30 points to 525, Commerce (International) with German is up 45 to 450 and Commerce (International) with Spanish is up 50 points to 460. Business Information Systems recorded an increase of 30 points to 400 while Commerce (Accounting) is up 20 to 440.   Science courses, equally, show increased demand. Against the backdrop of NUI Galway’s national and international leadership in biomedical science programmes, Biomedical Science rose from 540 to 545, Biopharmaceutical Chemistry is at 505 (up 10), Biotechnology is at 465 (up 20) and Environmental Science is up 25 at 400. A new course in Physics is offering places to those students with 400 CAO points or more.   Another new course Arts with Journalism at 480 points generated significant interest. Arts, the second largest CAO undergraduate course in the country remains unchanged at 300 points despite the downward trend in Arts courses nationally.  In Law, both Civil Law (up 10) and Corporate Law (up 15) recorded increases.   Engineering courses remain popular with Leaving Cert students with Electrical and Electronic Engineering soaring 60 points to 515, while Civil Engineering and Project and Construction Management both increased by 30 points.   Energy Systems Engineering, taught in NUI Galway’s award winning Engineering Building and home to the largest School of Engineering and Informatics in Ireland, increased 10 points to 440.   Podiatry, the only course of its’ kind in Ireland, is up 10 points to 470. There was also an increase in demand for General Nursing, Psychiatric Nursing and Midwifery courses while  the demand for Medicine remained largely unchanged.   NUI Galway’s Admission Officer, Stephen O’Dea, said: ‘This year, CAO applicants have their eyes firmly the jobs market with marked increases in demand for Commerce and Science courses in particular. Demand for all Commerce courses has increased substantially with Commerce (International) with French up 30 to 525. NUI Galway’s strength and reputation in bioscience is also reflected with Biomedical Science (545) continuing to perform well and Biopharmaceutical Chemistry increasing to 505 points. In Engineering Electrical and Electronic Engineering soared 60 points to 515.’   He continued ‘Incoming students will be well placed to benefit from NUI Galway’s significant capital investment programme facilitating staff and students in embracing innovation, entrepreneurship and research. Our new course Arts with Journalism has performed particularly well, at 480 points, contrasting with the downward trend in demand for Arts courses nationally.’   -ENDS-   Pointí CAO méadaithe go mór do chúrsaí Tráchtála agus Eolaíochta in OÉ Gaillimh   Méadú ar phointí CAO do 34 cúrsa in OÉ Gaillimh, méadú sa bhreis ar 20 pointe ar 15 chúrsa Tá méadú ollmhór ar an éileamh ar chúrsaí Tráchtála in OÉ Gaillimh agus líon na bpointí don Tráchtáil Ghinearálta méadaithe ó 340 go 375.  Tá méadú 30 pointe go 525 tagtha ar Thráchtáil (Idirnáisiúnta) le Fraincis,  méadú 45 pointe go 450 tagtha ar Thráchtáil (Idirnáisiúnta) le Gearmáinis agus méadú 50 pointe go 460 tagtha ar Thráchtáil (Idirnáisiúnta) le Spáinnis. Léiríonn an méadú seo tuiscint na mac léinn ar an riachtanas a bhaineann le teangacha sa mhargadh domhanda. Tháinig méadú 30 pointe go 400 ar Chórais Faisnéise Gnó agus tá Tráchtáil suas 20 pointe go 440.   Tá méadú tagtha chomh maith ar an éileamh ar chúrsaí Eolaíochta. I gcomhthéacs cheannródaíocht náisiúnta agus idirnáisiúnta OÉ Gaillimh i gcláir eolaíochta bithleighis, tá méadú ó 540 go 545 tagtha ar Eolaíocht Bhithleighis, méadú 10 bpointe go 505 ar Cheimic Bhithchógaisíochta, méadú 20 pointe go 465 ar Bhiteicneolaíocht agus méadú 25 pointe go 400 ar Eolaíocht Chomhshaoil. Tá cúrsa nua Fisice ag tairiscint áiteanna do mhic léinn le 400 pointe CAO nó os a chionn.   Is léir go raibh spéis ar leith i gcúrsa nua eile - Na Dána le hIriseoireacht - agus 480 pointe ag teastáil chun tabhairt faoi.  Níl aon athrú tagtha ar na pointí don chúrsa sna Dána (300 pointe), an dara cúrsa fochéime CAO is mó sa tír, in ainneoin an laghdaithe ar phointí i gcúrsaí sna Dána ar fud na tíre.  I gcúrsaí Dlí, tháinig méadú ar na pointí do Dhlí Sibhialta (suas 10 bpointe) agus do Dhlí Corparáideach (suas 15 phointe).   Tá tóir i gcónaí ag mic léinn Ardteistiméireachta ar chúrsaí Innealtóireachta agus tháinig méadú ollmhór 60 pointe go 515 ar an Innealtóireacht Leictreach agus Leictreonach, agus tháinig méadú 30 pointe ar Innealtóireacht Shibhialta agus ar Bhainistíocht Foirgníochta.   Tá méadú 10 bpointe go 440 tagtha ar Innealtóireacht Chóras Faisnéise, cúrsa a dhéantar a theagasc san Fhoirgneamh nua Innealtóireachta a tógadh ag baint úsáide as modhanna éiceolaíocha tógála.   Tháinig méadú ar na pointí don chúrsa Cosliachta, an t-aon chúrsa dá leithéid sa tír, suas 10 bpointe go 470, agus bhí méadú ar an éileamh ar chúrsaí san Altranas Ginearálta, Altranas Síciatrach agus Cnáimhseachas agus is beag athrú a tháinig ar an éileamh ar Leigheas.   Dúirt Oifigeach Iontrála OÉ Gaillimh, Stephen O’Dea: ‘I mbliana, tá iarratasóirí CAO ag coinneáil súil ghéar ar mhargadh na bpost agus tá sé le feiceáil againn sa mhéadú atá tagtha ar na pointí a theastaíonn do chúrsaí Tráchtála agus Eolaíochta go háirithe. Tá méadú suntasach tagtha ar an éileamh ar gach cúrsa Tráchtála agus méadú 30 pointe go 525 ar Thráchtáil (Idirnáisiúnta) le Fraincis. Tá láidreacht agus cáil OÉ Gaillimh san eolaíocht bhitheach le feiceáil sa tóir atá i gcónaí ar an Eolaíocht Bhithleighis (545) agus méadú go 505 pointe tagtha ar an Eolaíocht Bhithchógaisíochta. San Innealtóireacht tháinig méadú ollmhór 60 pointe go 515 ar an Innealtóireacht Leictreach agus Leictreonach.’   Dúirt sé freisin, ‘Bainfidh mic léinn tairbhe as an gclár suntasach infheistíochta caipitil in OÉ Gaillimh a chuireann ar chumas na foirne agus na mac léinn aghaidh a thabhairt ar nuálaíocht, ar fhiontraíocht agus ar thaighde. D’éirigh go han-mhaith leis an gcúrsa nua - Na Dána le hIriseoireacht - agus 480 pointe ag teastáil chun tabhairt faoi, téann sé seo i gcoinne an éilimh laghdaithe ar chúrsaí sna Dána go náisiúnta.’    -CRÍOCH-      

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Washington Post views post-crash Ireland through prism of Galway and Dublin

Washington Post views post-crash Ireland through prism of Galway and Dublin-image

Tuesday, 20 August 2013

  NUI Galway and Galway businesses and business leaders to the fore in US feature   Quotes from NUI Galway President Dr Jim Browne and Galway business leaders are prominent in an extensive Washington Post feature ‘Can Ireland’s Celtic Tiger roar again?’ published at the weekend.   The article, written by Steve Pearlstein, analyses the post-crash economy through the views of observers in Dublin and Galway, with NUI Galway, Galway Chamber and Galway businessman John O’Shaughnessy featuring in the lengthy analysis.   NUI Galway President Dr Jim Browne is quoted as saying, in the context of the Irish recovery, "We need to talk not about recovering the economy but recasting it, since in some important ways, what we had before was a disaster."   The feature followed a visit to Ireland by the Washington Post journalist Steve Pearlstein in June and was published this weekend on August 16th. The article is available at the Washington Post online at http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/can-irelands-celtic-tiger-roar-again/2013/08/16/1462304c-0460-11e3-a07f-49ddc7417125_story.html   -ends-  

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Women Who Receive Midwife Care Throughout Their Pregnancy and Birth Have Better Outcomes

Women Who Receive Midwife Care Throughout Their Pregnancy and Birth Have Better Outcomes -image

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

  NUI Galway School of Nursing and Midwifery partner with 3 UK universities in research findings on models of maternity care Maternity care that involves a midwife as the main care provider leads to better outcomes for most women, according to a systematic review published in The Cochrane Library. Researchers found that women who received continued care throughout pregnancy and birth from a small group of midwives were less likely to give birth pre-term and required fewer interventions during labour and birth than when their care was shared between different obstetricians, GPs and midwives.   In many countries, including the UK and Australia, midwives act as the main providers of care for women throughout pregnancy, labour and birth. In midwife-led care, there is an emphasis on normality, continuity of care and being cared for by a known, trusted midwife during labour.   Midwife-led continuity of care is provided in a multi-disciplinary network of consultation and referral with other care providers. This contrasts with medical-led models of care, where an obstetrician or family physician is primarily responsible for care, and with shared-care, where responsibility is shared between different healthcare professionals. There has been some debate about whether the midwife-led model of care is more effective.   The researchers reviewed data from 13 trials involving a total of 16,242 women. Eight trials included women at low risk of complications and five trials included women at high risk of complications. They looked at outcomes for mothers and babies when midwives were the main providers of care, compared to medical-led or shared care models.   When midwives were the main providers of care throughout, women were less likely to give birth before 37 weeks or lose their babies before 24 weeks. Women were happier with the care they received, had fewer epidurals, fewer assisted births, and fewer episiotomies. An episiotomy involves making a surgical incision to reduce the risk of a tear. In addition, women who received midwife-led care were no more likely to have a caesarean birth, but they were in labour for about half an hour longer on average.   Researchers from the School of Nursing and Midwifery in NUI Galway joined with Sheffield Hallam University, The University of Warwick to form an interdisciplinary team of researchers led by Jane Sandall of the Division of Women’s Health at King’s College London.   Professor Declan Devane of the School of Nursing and Midwifery at NUI Galway said ‘this work has important policy implications and provides high quality evidence of the benefits for women and their infants of midwife-led models of care supported by appropriate multi-professional referral. Other countries are using this to inform their maternity care policy and Ireland should do likewise.’   Five studies considered the cost of midwife-led compared to shared care. While care provided by midwives was more cost-effective during labour, the results for postnatal care were inconclusive. “There was wide variation in the way that maternity care costs were estimated in the included studies, but what was there suggested cost-saving effects of midwife-led care,” said Professor Devane.   -ends-  

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NUI Galway projects secure €1.3m in Health Research Board Funding

NUI Galway projects secure €1.3m in Health Research Board Funding-image

Thursday, 22 August 2013

Four programmes to run for three years are among 40 selected from over 209 applications NUI Galway has secured funding from the Health Research Board (HRB) worth €1.3m for four research programmes to run over the next three years.The HRB is to invest €12m in a total of 40 projects focused on different areas of research.   Questions addressed nationally include; Are current increases in suicide rates linked to the recession? Does our blood group determine our risk of heart attack? How do we improve outcomes for young adults with diabetes?  Four of the research projects will be conducted at NUI Galway.   Dr Sean Dinneen is investigating an intervention that will improve outcomes for young adults living with Type 1 Diabetes. Dr Thomas Ritter, National University of Ireland Galway aims to develop a new topical treatment for skin inflammation using adult stems cells.   Dr Wenxin Wang will seek to develop a new topical treatment for RDEB (Recessive Dsytrophic Epidermolysis Bullosa) which causes severe skin blistering in sufferers. Dr Dara Cannon aims to identify the biological subtypes of Bipolar Disorder to better understand the illness and speed up patients’ relief from symptoms.   Professor Lokesh Joshi, Vice-President for Research at NUI Galway welcomed the awards, adding that ‘today’s announcement is further endorsement of the calibre and relevance of research underway at NUI Galway.  In particular, this research will improve health outcomes for patients with type 1 diabetes, skin inflammation, RDEB, and bipolar disorder.  As a research-led University, innovative research is central to our objectives and I congratulate each of the researchers on their success under the HRB programme’.   'This funding will address a wide range of subjects, including mental health, cancer, diabetes and arthritis, says Enda Connolly, Chief Executive at the HRB. 'It will support health professionals and researchers to examine pressing research questions that will deliver strong evidence to enhance patient care, improve people's health or lifestyle and positively influence how we deliver our health services'.   The HRB selected a total of 40 projects from 209 applications. These were assessed by international peer review panels who believed the nature, scope and relevance of the proposals demonstrated great ambition and innovation that would lead to results that are relevant both nationally and internationally.   -ends-  

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NUI Galway Researchers Identify Socioeconomic Inequalities in Uptake of Cervical Cancer Screening

NUI Galway Researchers Identify Socioeconomic Inequalities in Uptake of Cervical Cancer Screening-image

Friday, 23 August 2013

Higher uptake among well-off in Ireland, UK, US but among less well-off in Northern Ireland A working paper published this week by NUI Galway economists points to important differences in uptake of cervical cancer screening. The study compared uptake of cervical cancer screening in Ireland, Northern Ireland, England and the US. It found that while cervical cancer is known to be more prevalent among those from lower socio-economic groups, uptake of screening in Ireland, England and the US all evidenced a pro-rich inequality – the better off were more likely to avail of it.   By contrast in Northern Ireland, the less well-off were more likely to avail of it; a pro-poor inequality was evident. Interestingly, this was driven by the behaviour of Catholics where a marked pro-poor inequality was evident, no such inequality being evident among Protestants.   While incidence rates and mortality rates associated with cervical cancer have been shown to evidence a pro-poor pattern (poor people are more likely to have and to die from cervical cancer), the study results show that in Ireland, England and the US a pro-rich pattern of screening exists. Why Northern Ireland should evidence a pro-poor pattern of service use and why Catholics in particular should do so is unclear but suggests that opportunities exist for shared learning.   NUI Galway researchers point to this as an example of how economists can help inform cancer control policies. Further work by economists from NUI Galway will be presented at the Inaugural Economics of Cancer Research Symposium to be hosted by NUI Galway on Monday 2nd September. The Symposium, funded as part of a Health Research Board (HRB) Knowledge Exchange and Dissemination Scheme (KEDS) initiative, will include presentations that explore various economic aspects of cancer care, policy formulation and research.   Contributors include speakers from the National Cancer Institute (USA), University of Washington, Imperial College London, the Stockholm School of Economics, Irish Cancer Society and Health Research Board. Dr Michael McBride, Chief Medical Officer of Northern Ireland will provide the opening address. A range of poster presentations based on work conducted in Ireland will be on display.   Professor Ciaran O’Neill, Dean of Business, Public Policy and Law says “Every decision has an economic dimension. Whether or not an individual decides to avail of screening, a government decides to fund a particular service or a pharmaceutical company decides to invest in a new treatment, choices are made; choices that have consequences for individuals, families and society. If we are to have an effective cancer control strategy it is crucial that we understand how choices are made, what impact they have and how we might seek to improve upon them. While research at NUI Galway has helped inform the development of policy in Ireland we recognise that no one individual or group has all the questions let alone all the answers. This symposium and the Group it will launch will create an international forum where we can explore the issues and seek answers to the questions together.”   Brendan Walsh, co-organiser and HRB/NCI Fellow states “The Economics of Cancer Research Symposium will bring together stakeholders involved in cancer research including clinicians, patient groups, policy makers, the media and economists. It is hoped that Group to be launched at the symposium will provide an infrastructure that will facilitate communication and knowledge exchange amongst cancer researchers from multidisciplinary backgrounds, both in Ireland and internationally, and allow evidence-based research to be easily disseminated to help inform policy across the cancer care pathway.”   Registration for The Economics of Cancer Research Symposium is free and available at http://www.conference.ie/Conferences/menu.asp?menu=1363&Conference=243 or by emailing b.walsh4@nuigalway.ie or economicsofcancerresearch@gmail.com   The Symposium will be live broadcast online at the Health Economics and Policy Analysis webpage http://www.nuigalway.ie/health-economics/   Follow this Group on https://twitter.com/EconCancerRes or using the hashtag #EconCancer Working paper “Exploring inequalities in service use: the case of cervical cancer screening in Ireland, the United Kingdom and United States” can be found here: http://db.tt/bH6Cjfj1   -ends-    

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Gastrointestinal Surgeon to Deliver Sir Peter Freyer Memorial Lecture at NUI Galway

Gastrointestinal Surgeon to Deliver Sir Peter Freyer Memorial Lecture at NUI Galway-image

Monday, 26 August 2013

NUI Galway will host Ireland’s largest surgical conference, the 38th Sir Peter Freyer Memorial Lecture and Surgical Symposium, on 6-7 September. Internationally renowned surgeon, Professor Leslie Nathanson will deliver the Memorial Lecture entitled ‘A Journey Towards the Perfect Fundoplication’.  Dr Nathanson is a General Surgeon and Head of the Hepatobiliary Unit at the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital, Queensland, Australia with special interests in laparoscopic, hepatobiliary and upper gastrointestinal surgery, especially the evolution of laparoscopic fundoplication surgery for reflux. Best known for the Nathanson laparoscopic liver retractor and development of a common bile basket used for extracting common bile duct stones, Dr Nathanson randomised trial of ERCP vs Laparoscopic treatment of CBD stones was published in 2005, and was a landmark trial in the treatment of common bile duct stones. His recent work on measuring adult oesophageal junction distensiblity during general anaesthetic assessed with the EndoFLIP (endoscopic functional luminal imagery probe) was published in 2011. He was awarded an honorary fellowship from the Edinburgh College of Surgeons in 2012. Professor Patrick Broe will deliver the State of the Art Lecture entitled ‘Irish Surgery: The Need for Vision and Leadership’on Saturday, 7 September at 1pm. Professor Broe is President of the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland and Consultant General Surgeon at Beaumont Hospital, Dublin with a special interest in Upper Gastrointestinal and Laparoscopic Surgery. He has been a member of the Council of the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland since 1991 and during this time he has been Chairman of the College Committee, the CME Committee, the General Surgery Sub-Committee and the Irish Surgical Postgraduate Training Committee. He was President of the Surgical Section of the Royal Academy of Medicine (RAMI) from 2006-2008. In Beaumont Hospital Professor Broe has served as chairman of the Surgical Division, the Medical Board and the Ethics Committee. He held the Chair of Clinical Governance from 2007-2009 after which he became Clinical Director for Surgery. He has been the Lead Clinical Director for Beaumont Hospital since 2011.  Michael Kerin, Professor of Surgery at NUI Galway, said: “We are delighted to welcome Dr Nathanson and Professor Broe to our University. Dr Nathanson is one of the pioneers of minimal access surgery and is highly regarded internationally within his field.  Both lectures are the centre-points of a large programme containing some of the best surgical research from this country.”  The annual Sir Peter Freyer Memorial Lecture and Surgical Symposium provides a platform for healthcare professionals to present their research and clinical work and allows for the merging of both scientific and clinical information. It is named in memory of the Galway-born surgeon, Sir Peter Freyer, who performed the first successful surgical operation to remove an enlarged prostate in 1900. The venue for the 38th Sir Peter Freyer Memorial Lecture and Surgical Symposium will be the Arts Millennium Building at NUI Galway. For further information call 091-524390 or visit www.freyer.ie -ENDS-

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NUI Galway Students Complete Analytical Chemistry Trust Fund Summer Studentships

NUI Galway Students Complete Analytical Chemistry Trust Fund Summer Studentships-image

Tuesday, 27 August 2013

Two NUI Galway Bachelor of Science students, Catherine McIntyre and Sinead Curran, recently completed summer studentships, carrying out work on undergraduate research projects at the University. The studentships have been funded by the Royal Society of Chemistry Analytical Chemistry Trust Fund (ACTF) Catherine McIntyre worked in the group of Professor Dónal Leech, School of Chemistry, on research to develop alternate systems for monitoring the extent of carbonaceous waste in wastewater plants. During her undergraduate degree, Catherine from Naas, Co. Kildare, became interested in environmental chemistry, and the chemistry of the environment, and the summer studentship allowed the opportunity to gain firsthand experience in this area. Catherine worked on development of a novel system for monitoring biological oxygen demand (BOD) in wastewaters. Traditional BOD measures the amount of carbonaceous material in wastes that can be biologically degraded, and is therefore an important parameter for wastewater and water quality management and determinations take 5-7 days. Research by Catherine focused on growing microbial biofilms on electrode surfaces and using these to generate a signal related to BOD of wastewaters, to provide a more rapid means of monitoring BOD in the samples. A native of Headford, Co. Galway, Sinead Curran worked with NUI Galway’s Dr Andrea Erxleben on the development and analysis of co-amorphous composites of the active pharmaceutical ingredient acyclovir with small-molecule excipients. The studentship has allowed Sinead to gain first research experience in pharmaceutical chemistry. Sinead worked on the development and analysis of co-amorphous composites of the antiviral drug acyclovir with small-molecule excipients. So-called composite amorphous systems, in which a more soluble form of a poorly soluble drug is stabilized, are a relatively new approach to overcome poor water solubility of therapeutics. Poor solubility in water is one of the major hurdles in drug development today. The summer project gave Sinead the opportunity to apply analytical techniques that she had studied in her analytical chemistry course module to a compound of pharmaceutical interest and to use the state-of-the-art analytical equipment in the School of Chemistry. NUI Galway’s Professor Dónal Leech said: “The prestigious ACTF studentships were awarded to Sinead and Catherine, who have demonstrated excellence in their undergraduate Chemistry studies, to allow them have fun and expand their knowledge undertaking research in NUI Galway School of Chemistry research projects.” -ENDS-

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