Skibereen to play host to National Digital Week

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13 October 2015 | 0

Over 2,000 entrepreneurs, digital marketers, technology enthusiasts are expected to descend on Skibereen next month for Ireland’s first National Digital Week.

The four-day event, taking place from 3-8 November, is the first tech conference of its kind in a non-urban area in Ireland and aims to cater for anyone with an interest in the future of digital technology.

More than 60 speakers will be in attendance, including Ronan Harris, head of Google EMEA; Dr Laurence O’Rourke, Rosetta Mission science operations coordinator at the European Space Agency; Ingrid Vanderveldt of the US-based Empower A Billion Women 2020 organisation and Digital Ambassador Lord David Puttnam.

The event will give attendees practical sessions on the latest technology trends and tools, ad-vice and support on growing a business through digital, and taking it to the next level in terms of market, finance and internationalisation. Speakers will also discuss working or running a business from a rural location rather than a metropolitan area and how that impacts company strategy.

“National Digital Week is an opportunity to examine the opportunities digital technologies can bring to businesses and communities, whether they are located in urban or rural locations,” said Ronan Harris. “As the digital divide narrows, due to initiatives such as the Government’s national broadband plan and SIRO, perhaps the biggest opportunities are available to those in rural Ireland, who can now compete effectively with urban centres and on the international stage. We have seen this at Google, where the Sales team has worked with many diverse companies across Ireland to help them internationalise their businesses. By 2016, estimates suggest over 20% of retail sales in G-20 countries will be made online and 80% of Europeans who use the Internet plan to shop online this year so it is important that businesses across Ireland recognise the opportunity this presents.”

National Digital Week is organised by the steering group of Ludgate@Skibbereen, an initiative which aims to create a digitally enabled rural society in West Cork. It is supported by The Department of Communications, Energy & Natural Resources (DCENR), as part of the national digital strategy for rural and maritime communities and towns across Ireland.

Corporate sponsors include AIB, Vodafone, Discovery Networks, PayPal,  Apical, and Spearline Labs.

Tickets can be purchased for individual full day sessions priced at an early bird price from €35 to €65 at www.digitalweek.ie.

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