This is a fantastic initiative to allow people have the chance to have their say in what we need to focus on as a country. We have excellent researchers in this country finding answers to some of the most difficult questions and challenges. We need ideas and innovation to help us plan for the future.
I had the opportunity to work with Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) in Dublin in a previous role and to learn about excellent research projects all around the country as well as all the education projects through primary and secondary schools with the Discover Science programme.
We have seen how research has literally saved millions of lives thanks to the incredible teams who have developed Covid-19 vaccines in the past year. The acceleration of clinical trials and testing was absolutely incredible and demonstrated how research has such an impact in our lives.
If you have time this Friday morning, come along to Ballinasloe and tell the team what you think. The feedback from each of the roadshows will be part of a report submitted to Government for review.
So what do we think could help our communities in the decades ahead in the West of Ireland –
Is it Healthcare, environment or transport?
Do we want to develop more ehealth and tele-health to reduce waiting lists? How do we support new technologies in hospitals like Portiuncula for patients and staff?
What about smart town planning and the impacts of heavy goods vehicles through town centres and types of air pollution like our ongoing ‘Ballinasloe Says No’ campaign? How do we best protect our unique landscape & environment? How do we encourage more families to consider living in the West?
What about better measures of the types of land, callows, floodplains in the West of Ireland in terms of carbon capture?
Or perhaps for start-ups & companies– how can innovation help drive new products, expand markets, be local and global online? How about remote working and infrastructure such as broadband for decades ahead?