Thursday, 11 September 2014

Irish Teen to Deliver Keynote Address Alongside Global Tech Star

A 16-year-old Co. Cork schoolgirl will deliver a keynote address alongside the co-founder of one of the most successful companies to emerge from Silicon Valley in recent years at the sixth annual Digital Ireland Forum, which takes place this Friday, 12th September at The Convention Centre, Dublin, Spencer Dock, North Wall Quay, Dublin 1.  The Forum – organised by Silicon Republic, Ireland’s leading technology news site – will run from 8am to 11am

Sixteen-year-old Ciara Judge, a member of the recently-formed Digital Youth Council and a former winner of the BT Young Scientist competition, will address the event – on how young people can contribute to digital policy.  Renaud Visage, co-founder and CTO of Eventbrite, will also speak, outlining how consumer values and expectations are changing because of tech.  Founded in 2006 in the tech hotbed of California, Eventbrite is a digital platform for event organisers and attendees, which was valued at US$1 billion in its most recent funding round.

The Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, Alex White TD, will deliver the opening address at the Digital Ireland Forum, in his first public engagement with the tech industry since being appointed Minister.  A video link with Lord David Puttnam, Ireland’s Digital Champion, will also take place as part of the event.    

Commenting in advance, Ann O’Dea, co-founder and CEO of Silicon Republic, said: “This event brings together digital business leaders, policymakers and sectoral stakeholders to explore the macro issues affecting Ireland’s digital economy.  We are delighted to have such a strong line-up of speakers this year.  It is inspiring to hear how passionate and visionary Ciara Judge is about digital in Ireland.  At only 16, she is as innovative and committed as many who have worked in the sector for decades. 

“Renaud Visage, meanwhile, built the Eventbrite platform and – in doing so – established one of the most successful international tech companies of recent years.  Working between San Francisco and Paris, and advising start-ups all over Europe, he is well placed to speak on the trends currently driving the tech sector. 

“We are also honoured, of course, to have both Lord David Puttnam, Ireland’s Digital Champion, and Minister Alex White, on the schedule for the Forum.  Lord Puttnam has been such an inspirational and influential figure when it comes to Ireland’s digital landscape.  He spoke at one of our first Digital Ireland Fora.  And, of course, we are particularly looking forward to the Minister’s first major address to the digital sector.”

Panel discussions will take place at the Digital Ireland Forum on the topics of ‘21st Century Digital Infrastructure and Environment’ and ‘Meeting the Demands of the New Consumer’, with panellists from ESB Innovation, BT Ireland, eircom, Vodafone, UPC and The Digital Hub. 

Further information about the Forum is available at: