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€31m project secured for floating wind project in North West Europe

Posted into: EU ProgrammesGeneral

€31m project secured for floating wind project in North West Europe

European Marine Energy Centre leads consortium from Ireland, the UK, France, the Netherlands and Germany

March 2019: A €31 million project has been approved for an ambitious four-year floating offshore wind project. Subject to consenting, it is planned that a full-scale floating wind turbine be deployed for testing off the west coast of Ireland at a Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) test site near Belmullet, Co. Mayo, by 2022. The project is led by the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) working in partnership with SEAI, SAIPEM and other organisations in France, Germany, Ireland, the Netherlands, and the UK.

Funding for the project has been secured from Interreg North West Europe to accelerate the uptake of floating offshore wind. The project will demonstrate the survivability and cost-competitiveness of a floating offshore wind technology. It will also support the development of an active supply chain in the region which has some of the strongest wind and ocean resources in the world. The project is known as AFLOWT (Accelerating market uptake of Floating Offshore Wind Technology) and is the first project of its kind at such scale to draw on expertise from right across Europe.

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Richard Bruton T.D. said:

Decarbonising our electricity supply will be crucial to becoming a leader in climate change. We are fortunate in Ireland to have such a fantastic wind energy resource. Almost one third of Ireland’s electricity currently comes from renewables, with wind being the highest contributor. However, we need to step up our ambition in this area and stretch ourselves farther. I welcome this project as an excellent opportunity to further explore the potential of offshore wind.”

Commenting on the reasoning for choosing offshore wind, Oliver Wragg, Commercial Director at EMEC said:

                “Over the past 15 years EMEC has hosted more ocean energy technologies at its real sea test berths in the UK than any other facility in the world. We have developed a wealth of knowledge and expertise that can now be transferred to the testing and demonstration of floating offshore wind to help it make the most cost effective and rapid transition to commercialisation.” 

EMEC is thrilled that this project will enable continuation of the important work that EMEC has been conducting with SEAI on development of offshore test sites in Ireland over the past four years. If floating offshore wind technology can operate reliably and efficiently on the west coast of Ireland, it will work anywhere. Through this project we hope that the successful technology demonstrations will fundamentally expand the global offshore wind market.”

Jim Gannon, Chief Executive of SEAI said:

                         “SEAI is delighted to be part of the consortium and welcomes this initial step of gaining support from Interreg. We recognise that there are many significant steps to be taken to deliver this ambitious project and we will work with all project partners and local and national stakeholders to maximise local and national benefits. This project will show Ireland’s strengths, not only in terms of its significant wind resources, but also as a responsive, innovative and agile country”.

Stefano Porcari, Chief Operating Officer of Saipem's E&C Offshore Division and CEO of SAIPEM SA said:

“SAIPEM continues its commitment to diversify its core business to offering modern solutions to the renewable energy market. This project represents for us a unique opportunity to prove our Floating Wind technology in severe environments. This full-scale floating turbine complements SAIPEM sets of integrated services part of the fixed offshore wind capabilities consolidating the pioneering spirit of our company which pushes the boundaries of the Energy Industry a bit further. Together with our consortium partners, we will work on the feasibility and the cost effectiveness of this floating offshore wind project for a low carbon emission energy environment.”

SAIPEM SA will be supported by project partners with research and development insights coming from Cable Life Cycle Assurance (CaLiCyA) in France, Maritime Research Institute Netherlands (MARIN), Fraunhofer Institute for Wind Energy Systems (IWES) in Germany, University College Cork and Electricity Supply Board Engineering & Major Projects (ESB E&MP) in Ireland.

EMEC will manage the project from the UK, with the initial kick off meeting of partners taking place in Dublin on March 12th. Once planning, permitting and supply chain requirements are in place, the floating turbine will be tested for a year at SEAI’s Atlantic Marine Energy Test Site (AMETS) off the west coast of Ireland. Deployment is currently planned for 2022. By testing at AMETS, the technology developed in AFLOWT will be proven in the harshest of North West Europe’s offshore environments, readying it for application at any deep-water offshore environment across the world.

For further information, contact:

EMEC

Lisa MacKenzie, Marketing and Communications Manager, EMEC
Tel: +44 (0)1856 852207
Email: lisa.mackenzie@emec.org.uk

SEAI

Johnny Fallon, Carr Communications
Tel: +353 85 889 5103
Email: johnny@carrcommunications.ie

SAIPEM

Media relations
Tel: +39 0244234088
E-mail: media.relations@saipem.com

Interreg North-West Europe Joint Information Event

Posted into: EU ProgrammesGeneral

Interreg North-West Europe Joint Information Event

Interreg North-West Europe Programme and Special EU Programmes Body (SEUPB) are hosting a joint application clinic on 16th April in Newry for potential applicants interested in applying under Call 9. The event will be held at the offices of InterTrade Ireland in Newry, Co. Down. 

The Interreg North-West Europe National Contact Points for both Ireland and the UK - Rita McGarvey and Filippo Compagni - will facilitate the one-to-one meetings which will provide an opportunity for potential applicants to gain advice and pointer on their project proposal ahead of the call 9 deadline for step 1 applications on 14 June 2019.

To register for the event, email Gerry Bradley SEUPB by 1 April.

A meeting time will be assigned with the National Contact Point. For further information on Call 9
log on to the Interreg North-West Europe Programme website www.nweurope.eu or
contact Rita McGarvey, National Contact Point for Ireland on 051 860700.

MATCH UP meets Cork Mobility Forum

Posted into: EU ProgrammesGeneral

MATCH UP meets Cork Mobility Forum

 

The Southern Regional Assembly presented the MATCH-UP project to Cork Transport Mobility Forum on 12 March and to discuss how the two organisations could collaborate on future activities, particularly during European Mobility Week which takes place 16-22 September.

Cork TMF is a representative group of members with a common interest in sustainable and active travel, including the local council, higher education institutions, the HSE, environmental associations, cycling associations, industry representatives, public and private transport providers. 

The Regional Assembly, through MATCH-UP, looks forward to working with Cork TMF to highlight the positive work Cork City is doing to achieve significant improvement to modal interchange including the new Harley Street Pedestrian and Cycle bridge which is currently under development.

For more on MATCH UP, contact Rose Power.

Assembly Celebrates International Women’s Day 2019

Posted into: The AssemblyGeneral

Assembly Celebrates International Women’s Day 2019

The Southern Regional Assembly is proudly celebrating International Women’s Day by acknowledging the work of its predominantly female staff working across a variety of roles within the organisation. The strong and extensive wealth of female staff across all sections of the Assembly helps to give it a broader perspective and make it a modern and more open organisation.

The 17 female staff members bring strong leadership, energy, dedication and creativity to the Assembly’s team across a number of key functions: Derville Brennan, Róisín Kiely, Rita McGarvey, Susan Lee, Marie Harnett, Yvonne Cooney, Rose Power, Karen Coughlan, Samantha Richardson, Breda Curran, Eve Hayden, Edel Hunt, Siobhán Rudden, Sharon Murray, Yvonne O’Brien, Elaine Gallagher and Joanne Twomey.

The Assembly would also like to acknowledge the female Assembly Members: Cllr Deirdre Forde, Cork County Council and Committee of the Region’s member; Cllr Deirdre O’Brien, Cork County Council and Cllr Mary Shields, Cork City Council and Committee of the Regions Alternate Member. 

Regional Assembly March Meeting

Posted into: The AssemblyGeneral

Regional Assembly March Meeting

The Southern Regional Assembly held its monthly meeting at Assembly House today, 6th March. Assembly Members from across the Southern Region participated in the meeting, who are local councillors nominated by their constituent Local Authorities.

Key points on the March agenda included an update by the Department of Public Expenditure & Reform on the negotiations for EU funding post-2020.  Also covered on the agenda was the consultation process for the draft Regional Spatial & Economic Strategy.

Visit here for more on the Regional Assembly.

Getting Ireland Brexit Ready

Posted into: General

Getting Ireland Brexit Ready

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s website, Getting Ireland Brexit Ready, was launched to inform Irish businesses and citizens about the approach the Government of Ireland is taking in light of the decision of the United Kingdom to leave the European Union.

Brexit presents unprecedented political, economic and diplomatic challenges for Ireland. How these challenges are handled will be a major factor in shaping the future of our island and our relationship with Britain for years to come.

The website gives updates on the Government’s most recent engagements, outreach events, and ongoing consultation work on Brexit, including information on resources and financial supports available from all Government Departments and Agencies to help businesses to get Brexit ready. 

For further information and to sign up for email alerts, visit Getting Ireland Brexit Ready

Interreg North West Europe Call 9 Opens: Deadline 14th June 2019

Posted into: EU ProgrammesGeneral

Interreg North West Europe Call 9 Opens: Deadline 14th June 2019

Interreg North West Europe Call 9 Opens: Deadline 14th June 2019

Interreg North West Europe Programme ninth call for project proposals is now open.  The deadline for Step 1 applications is Friday 14th June 2019.  The application form and support documents are now available online

The current call for proposals is only open to priority 1 and priority 3 of the NWE Programme. The Programme is looking for transnational cooperation projects that can deliver concrete results for the North-West Europe area and its citizens under its two priorities of Innovation and Resource and Materials Efficiency. 

Priority 1: Innovation

Specific Objective 1: To enhance innovation performance of enterprises throughout NWE regions.

Within priority 1, and without excluding in any way other relevant topics for this priority, the NWE programme would welcome in particular projects dealing with:

  • Social innovation (please see guidance note on our website), including projects addressing the migration-related challenge, focusing on the integration of recognised refugees on the mid & long-term, in particular in the domain of entrepreneurship, employment and access to the labour market.
  • Innovative products, processes and technologies contributing to CO2 reduction and the green economy, including green transport, in line with the big societal challenges addressed by the Paris Agreement.

Priority 3: Resource and materials efficiency

Specific Objective 5: To optimise (re)use of material and natural resources in NWE.

Within priority 3, the NWE programme is specifically interested in projects focusing on circular economy.

The Programme encourages public, scientific, private and civil society organisations to come together to improve the economic, environmental, territorial and social development of the regions in the North-West Europe area. 

The application process is in two steps.  Step 1 focuses on the project need, its objectives and expected results.  If approved, it is developed into a full Step 2 application and success at this stage means full approval and a grant award of up to 60%.

For complete information about Call 9 please visit: www.nweurope.eu  Please contact Rita McGarvey, National Contact Point for Ireland for further information:

Email: rmcgarvey@southernassembly.ie
Tel: +353 51 860700
Twitter: @interreg_nwe

Interreg NWE is one of the fifteen transnational cooperation programmes financed by the European Union. It is financed through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).  The Southern Regional Assembly and the Eastern & Midlands Regional Assembly represent the Member State on the Programme’s Monitoring Committee. 

Eligible Countries

Ireland (All counties), UK, Belgium, Luxembourg, parts of France, Germany and the Netherlands, and Switzerland.

Good Practice - Broadening the Scope of ‘Impact’

Posted into: EU ProgrammesGeneral

Good Practice - Broadening the Scope of ‘Impact’

WE’RE PUBLISHED!

Another significant milestone achieved in the MARIE Project with the publication of our Good Practice ‘Broadening the Scope of 'Impact'’.

As a partner on the MARIE project, the Southern Regional Assembly, in conjunction with Science Foundation Ireland (SFI), has submitted a ‘Good Practice’ outlining how to broaden the scope of impact of research. We anticipate this will advance project MARIE’s overall goal of improving regional public policy in support of the delivery and mainstreaming of Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI).  By supporting commitment to responsibility, the project helps to create smart, sustainable and inclusive regions.

Impact in this instance is defined as the “demonstrable contribution that excellent research makes to society and the economy” 

How does this help me as a citizen?

While many of us may not be aware of the far-reaching consequences of research it seeps into our daily lives.  This good practice has been designed to not only recognise scientific excellence but also to acknowledge the potential impact of research on areas such as society, population, health & wellbeing, food & energy security issues, environmental protection while supporting Government Policy.   Measuring the broader impact increases responsibility resulting in greater accountability to citizens as significant public money is spent on scientific research therefore it is necessary to show value for money. 

RRI is a relatively new concept in Southern & Eastern region of Ireland but SFI are pioneering the way for others to foster RRI into their daily working lives.  Our partnership on the MARIE project will assist SFI in realising their vision of Ireland being the world’s best for both scientific research excellence and impact by 2020.   

MARIE is part-funded by the Interreg Europe Programme, through the European Regional Development Fund and is led by CISE – Special Agency of the Chamber of Commerce of Florì-Cesena, Italy.

MARIE will run until 2021, find out more about MARIE at www.interregeurope.eu/marie/

Project Contact: Karen Coughlan, EU Projects Officer, Southern Regional Assembly

Phone: +353 (0) 51 860 706         Email: kcoughlan@southernassembly.ie

Success for Irish Participants in first stage of Interreg NWE submission

Posted into: EU ProgrammesGeneral

Success for Irish Participants in first stage of Interreg NWE submission

The NWE Monitoring Committee met on 6-7 February 2019 to decide on applications made to the Programme.  They considered 68 Step 1 applications.  The following is the outcome of this meeting.

Step 1 Decisions

No. approved to Step 1

No. approved to Step 1 with Irish partners

23

9 (1 LP, 14 PP & 2 AP)

One Lead Partner, fourteen Project Partners and two Associate Partners from Ireland are involved in 9 approved Step 1 applications.

The deadline for submission of Step 2 applications is 31st May 2019.

Table 1: Approved applications Step 1 – Approvals with an astrix have Irish Partners

Acronym

Name

Partners

Priority/

SO

LP

 

ASP

Additive Subtractive platform to facilitate mass-customised manufacturing by SMEs

-

P1 SO1

NL

Beef-4-Future*

Propagating innovations for more efficient use of resources for beef farming in the North West Europe area

Teagasc (PP)

Dawn Meats (AP)

P3 SO5

FR

Biogas Boost*

Biogas Boost – Boosting the uptake of low carbon technologies on biogas and biomethane plants in NWE.

Gas Networks Ireland (PP)

Renewable Gas Forum Ireland (PP)

P2 SO3

BE

BioWILL*

Integrated “Zero Waste” Biorefinery utilising all fractions of Willow feedstock for the production of high to medium based Bio-Chemicals/Materials, Renewable Energy in the form of Bio Methane production and Natural Fertilisers

University of Limerick (LP)

Epitheal Ltd (PP)

Gas Networks Ireland (PP)

UCC (AP)

P1 SO3

IE

CCC-HUB*

Creating & sustaining charcoal value chains to promote a circular carbon economy in NWE

Irish Bioenergy Association (PP)

Western development Commission (PP)

P3 SO5

DE

Certification-D

Certification of technological products for people with Dementia to support SMEs in innovation & business growth

-

P1 SO1

DE

Circular Future of Textiles

Innovation towards a circular future for NWE textiles

-

P1 SO1

NL

DECREASE*

Demonstration & implementation of extraction & application of added value products from fruit & vegetable waste

University of Dublin (PP)

P3 SO5

BE

DHUB*

Datafication Hub to boost the competitiveness of NWE manufacturing industry

Insight Centre for Data Analytics (PP)

Western Development Commission (PP)

P1 SO1

FR

DigitalDe

Construction

Advanced Digital Solutions Supporting the High Value Recovery & Reuse of Building Materials

-

P1 SO1

NL

DisiciRE*

Digital Support Infrastructure for Citizens in the Repair Economy

University of Limerick (PP)

NUI Galway (PP)

P3 SO5

BE

I2i

iSolutions to Isolation

-

P1 SO1

UK

ICare4Farms*

Increase the capacity of Renewable Energy in Farms in the NWE region by using solar thermal energy

NWRA (PP)

P2 SO3

FR

IMPACT

Innovation in Manufacturing of high-value products from Agricultural residues in NWE Territory (IMPACT)

-

P1 SO1

NL

INCLUSIVEFIELDLABS

Inclusive Field Labs

-

P1 SO1

NL

IT4Anxiety

Managing anxiety via innovative technologies for better mental health

-

P1 SO1

BE

PoW*

Ploughing on Wind

ESB International (PP)

P2 SO3

NL

RE2STRUCT

Repairable & Recycle (semi-) structural products through thermoplastic adhesives

-

P3 SO5

BE

REGENERATIS

Regeneration of past metalurgical sites & deposits through innovative circularity for raw materials

-

P3 SO5

BE

SHUTTLES

Automated electric shuttles in transport networks

-

P2 SO4

NL

Smart Circular Bridge (SCB)

Smart circular bridges for pedestrians & cyclist in a circular belt environment

-

P3 SO5

NL

TRANSFORM-CE

Transforming single use plastic waste into 3D printable/additive manufacturing & intrusion moulding feedstocks & creating a new circular economy model

-

P3 SO5

UK

ValuSect

Valuable insects

-

P1 SO1

BE

Southern Regional Assembly elects Waterford native Cllr. Jason Murphy as Cathaoirleach for 2019

Posted into: The AssemblyGeneral

Southern Regional Assembly elects Waterford native Cllr. Jason Murphy as Cathaoirleach for 2019

At a meeting of the Southern Regional Assembly held at its’ Headquarters on O’Connell Street, Waterford City, on Friday, 11th January 2019, Cllr. Jason Murphy (Waterford City and County Council) was elected as Cathaoirleach for the term to July 2019 and Cllr. Oliver Walsh (Wexford County Council) was elected as Leas-Cathaoirleach.

Cllr. Jason Murphy was first elected to the Southern Regional Assembly in 2014, as one of the two nominated members from Waterford City and County Council. Jason is the Fianna Fáil representative for ward south in Waterford City. He was Deputy Mayor of Waterford City and County Council in 2014 and is currently the Chairperson of the HSE's Health Forum South. Jason is very much looking forward to working with the members of the Southern Regional Assembly and the executive over the coming year to help insure that the enormous economic and social potential for the region and its people can be fully realised over the coming years.

Election of Cathaoirleach.pdf

Minister announces €2.4 Million Investment by the Marine Institute in Industry-Led Marine Projects

Posted into: The AssemblyGeneral

Photo by Darragh Kane

Minister announces €2.4 Million Investment by the Marine Institute in Industry-Led Marine Projects

The Minister for Agriculture, Food and Marine, Michael Creed TD has announced that the Marine Institute is to provide twelve marine businesses (in collaboration with five universities) with investment funding totalling €2.4 million over 3 years.

 

These awards will be carried out with the support of the Marine Institute under the Marine Research Programme 2014-2020 funded by the Irish Government and co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) through the Regional Operational Programme 2014-20.

 

The funding aims to drive continued innovation in Ireland's ocean economy, a key requirement of the National Marine Research and Innovation Strategy 2017-2021. The twelve grants of up to €200,000 each are being provided to individual companies and company-led consortia to support novel R&D and the development of new technologies in key growth areas such as marine engineering, renewable energy and the blue bioeconomy.

 

Minister Creed said, "Ireland's blue economy continues to grow and develop in line with the targets of the national integrated marine plan, Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth. Indigenous small and medium enterprises are identifying new commercial opportunities across a range of marine sectors which can lead to economic growth and new jobs. These industry-led awards provide the opportunity for companies to build their R&D capacity and to innovate towards new products and processes. I look forward to seeing the twelve successful companies develop and grow their businesses with the support of this significant public investment funding."

 

Marine Institute CEO Dr. Peter Heffernan said, "The Marine Institute is committed to assisting industry-led development through knowledge transfer, capacity building, research and Innovation. This investment in industry-led research is a key deliverable of the Marine Institute Strategic Plan 2018-2022: Building Ocean Knowledge, Delivering Ocean Services. Job creation in the marine sector is increasing as a result of such investment and Irish marine companies have built an excellent reputation internationally for innovation and best practice. The 12 companies receiving funding through this funding call have demonstrated the demand and capability to fuel further growth through marine research".

 

Increased economic growth and job creation from Irish-based SMEs is a key component of several national strategies and regional development plans. A diverse range of companies applied to the Marine Institute and awards have been approved for companies operating in a range of marine sectors, including a bioresources processing company, advanced technologies companies and marine engineering companies.

 

See full list of grants awarded below.

Project Title

Lead Organisation (Company)

Project Partners

Total Project Funding Awarded

Main Research Theme (National Marine R&I Strategy)

Development of marine functional food to support muscle health & healthy aging in older adults

Bio-marine Ingredients Ireland Ltd

Dublin City University & University of Limerick

€200,000

Bioresources: Processing for Food & Other Use

Aquamoor

Technology From Ideas Ltd

Not Applicable

€199,960

Bioresources: Aquaculture

A Morphodynamic Study of the Irish Sea

Gavin & Doherty Geosolutions

University College Cork

€199,957

Renewable Energy

Development of the next generation fisheries surveys using a "swarm" of Unmanned Surface Vessels

Xocean Limited

Not Applicable

€199,739

Advanced Technologies

Floating Solar Hybrid Energy Project

SolarMarine Energy Ltd

University College Cork

€195,465

Renewable Energy

Eureka-SeaWind: A lighter, more cost-effective solution for floating offshore wind

Marine Materials Ireland Ltd

Not Applicable

€199,816

Renewable Energy

The IDS Smart buoy Project

IDS Monitoring Ltd

Not Applicable

€196,275

Advanced Technologies

OWSC - Designing for Manufacture, Deployment, Operation, Maintenance and Decommissioning

Resolute Marine

Not Applicable

€199,955

Renewable Energy

Development of Micropile Technology for Subsea Environment

Subsea Micropiles Ltd

Not Applicable

€199,902

Renewable Energy

1kW Inline Gator - aquaculture application

Exceedence Ltd

Technology From Ideas Ltd

€199,532

Renewable Energy

Engineering Advanced Materials for Marine Energy and Aquaculture applications.

Ocean Energy Ltd.

NUI Galway

€195,565

Engineering

Marine EcoPowa Project

w1Da Experience Ltd

University College Cork & University of Southampton

€198,763

Renewable Energy

Strong Irish presence in Interreg North West Europe

Strong Irish presence in Interreg North West Europe

                                                                                                                                          

Ireland has secured funding under 7 of the 13 applications which were approved by the Interreg North West Europe Monitoring Committee at their meeting in Brussels on 10 January.

 

There are 16 Associate Partners, 9 Irish Partners and one Lead Partner in the approved projects which will receive 60% of their project costs to roll out activities with their European counterparts under the three Programme Priorities of Innovation, Low Carbon and Resource & Materials Efficiency. 

 

At their meeting, the Monitoring Committee considered 20 Step 2 applications and approved 13.  The Programme awarded €3.49m to 10 Irish organisations participating in 7 projects.

 

Step 2 Approvals: approvals with an astrix have Irish partners

Project

Acronym

Project

Name

Priority

Lead

Partner

H2SHIPS

System-Based Solutions for H2-Fuelled Water Transport in North-West Europe

2

Germany

Care-Peat*

Carbon Loss Reduction from Peatlands; an integrated approach

2

Belgium

IMAGINE

Inclusive market Agriculture Incubator in North-West Europe

1

Belgium

BSTART*

Blockstart: Blockchain-based applications for SME

competitiveness

1

Netherlands

OceanDemo*

Demonstration Programme for Ocean Energy Pilot Farms and Supporting Technologies

1

UK

HECTOR

Heritage & Cultural Tourism Open Resource

2

Belgium

eHUBS

Smart Shared Green Mobility Hubs

2

Netherlands

RED WOLF*

Rethink Electricity Distribution Without Load Following

2

UK

ENERGE*

Energizing Education to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions

2

Ireland

FABulous Farmers

FABulous Farmers employ Functional AgroBiodiversity as a nature-based solution to reduce use of natural and material resources, delivering benefits for Farmers, society and the environment in NWE.

3

Belgium

COBRACOMP

Braided textiles to improve the competitiveness of composite materials industry in NWE

1

France

REAMIT*

Improving Resource Efficiency of Agribusiness supply chains by Minimising waste using Big Data and Internet of Things sensors

3

UK

MUSTBEO*

Multi Storey Building E=0 refurbishment

2

Netherlands

 

The Programme Secretariat in France will have finalised contracts with the approved projects by mid-March after which full details of partners and budgets will be available. 

 

There is still plenty of opportunity for potential applicants to secure funding. The ninth call for project proposals is now open until 14 June 2019. This call will be open to applications under Priority 1 and Priority 3 only. (Priority 2 will not be open for Call 9).

 

For further information on Interreg North-West Europe please contact the National Contact Point Rita McGarvey at the Assembly on +353 51 860700 or see the Interreg NWE website.

Interreg North West Europe Call 9 Opens

Interreg North West Europe Call 9 Opens
                                                                                                                                                           
 

Interreg North West Europe Call 9 Opens: Deadline 14th June 2019

 

Interreg North West Europe Programme ninth call for project proposals is now open.  The deadline for Step 1 applications is Friday 14th June 2019.  The application form and support documents are now available online

 

The current call for proposals is only open to priority 1 and priority 3 of the NWE Programme. The Programme is looking for transnational cooperation projects that can deliver concrete results for the North-West Europe area and its citizens under its two priorities of Innovation and Resource and Materials Efficiency. 

 

Priority 1: Innovation

Specific Objective 1: To enhance innovation performance of enterprises throughout NWE regions.

Within priority 1, and without excluding in any way other relevant topics for this priority, the NWE programme would welcome in particular projects dealing with:

 

  • Social innovation (please see guidance note on our website), including projects addressing the migration-related challenge, focusing on the integration of recognised refugees on the mid & long-term, in particular in the domain of entrepreneurship, employment and access to the labour market.

 

  • Innovative products, processes and technologies contributing to CO2 reduction and the green economy, including green transport, in line with the big societal challenges addressed by the Paris Agreement.

 

Priority 3: Resource and materials efficiency

Specific Objective 5: To optimise (re)use of material and natural resources in NWE.

Within priority 3, the NWE programme is specifically interested in projects focusing on circular economy.

 

The Programme encourages public, scientific, private and civil society organisations to come together to improve the economic, environmental, territorial and social development of the regions in the North-West Europe area. 

 

The application process is in two steps.  Step 1 focuses on the project need, its objectives and expected results.  If approved, it is developed into a full Step 2 application and success at this stage means full approval and a grant award of up to 60%.

 

For complete information about Call 9 please visit: www.nweurope.eu  Please contact Rita McGarvey, National Contact Point for Ireland for further information:

 

Email: rmcgarvey@southernassembly.ie
Tel: +353 51 860700
Twitter: @interreg_nwe

 

Interreg NWE is one of the fifteen transnational cooperation programmes financed by the European Union. It is financed through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).  The Southern Regional Assembly and the Eastern & Midlands Regional Assembly represent the Member State on the Programme’s Monitoring Committee. 

 

Eligible Countries and Map of Programme Area

Ireland (All counties), UK, Belgium, Luxembourg, parts of France, Germany and the Netherlands, and Switzerland.

Draft Southern Region’s Regional Spatial and Economic Strategy

Draft Southern Region’s Regional Spatial and Economic Strategy

The Southern Regional Assembly have prepared a draft Regional Spatial and Economic Strategy (RSES) for the whole of the Southern Region for the period 2019-2031. The draft RSES provides a long-term regional level strategic planning and economic framework, in support of the implementation of the National Planning Framework, for the future physical, economic and social developments for the Southern Region.

The draft RSES is a consultation document and the Southern Regional Assembly will consider all submissions made in writing between Tuesday 18th December 2018 and on or before 5.00pm Friday 08th March 2019 before adopting the RSES.  Submissions or observations can be made via:

Please note that submissions may be published on our website and subject to Freedom of Information. Receipt of submissions will be acknowledged however it will not be possible to issue individual responses.

 

Documents and submission form available here.

€8.23m Funding for 10 Irish Organisations

€8.23m Funding for 10 Irish Organisations

€8.23m Funding for 10 Irish Organisations

 

Interreg North-West Europe has awarded €8.23m to 10 Irish organisations participating in 5 projects which were approved at the programme’s Monitoring Committee in Brussels last month. The projects are currently in the contract stage and will start in January.

 

The organisations will cooperate with other regions in North-West Europe on topics such as ocean power, dairy farming innovation, photonics, renewable energy and off-shore wind energy.  The overall aim of every project is to reduce disparities between regions to increase performance.

 

Priority

Project Name

No. of Irish Partners

Innovation

OPIN: Ocean Power Innovation Network

1

Innovation

HappyMoo: Enabling NWE dairy farmers & vets to valorize smart data opportunities for innovative holistic, individualised tools to manage animal health & welfare provided by the NWE wide network of milk recording organisations

1

Innovation

OPI4NWE: Open-Innovation Photonics pilot for NWE

2

Low Carbon

RegEnergy: Renewable Energy Regions

3

Low Carbon

AFLOWT: Accelerating market uptake of Floating Offshore Wind Technology

3

 

 

The programme will launch its’ ninth call in December with an anticipated deadline in June 2019.  For further information about Interreg North West Europe, please contact Siobhan Rudden at the Southern Regional Assembly: srudden@southernassembly.ie or 051 860700.

Rural Regeneration First Round of Funding approvals

Rural Regeneration First Round of Funding approvals

Rural Regeneration First Round of Funding approvals

As part of Project Ireland 2040, the Government has committed to providing an additional €1 billion for a new Rural Regeneration and Development Fund (“the Fund”) over the period 2019 to 2027. The Fund will provide investment to support rural renewal for suitable projects in towns and villages with a population of less than 10,000, and outlying areas. It will be administered by the Department of Rural and Community Development.

The new Fund provides an unprecedented opportunity to support the revitalisation of rural Ireland, to make a significant and sustainable impact on rural communities, and to address de-population in small rural towns, villages and rural areas. It will be a key instrument to support the objectives of the National Planning Framework, and in particular to achieve Strengthened Rural Economies and Communities – one of the National Strategic Outcomes of the NPF.

 

First round allocation of the RRDF, November 2018

 

Total:                                    €24,417,639

SRA:                                      €12,834,722 (52.5%) Southern Region approved  projects are  in Carlow (1); Kilkenny (1); Limerick (3) Clare (1); Cork (1) and Kerry (1)

NWRA:                                 €10,382,917 (42.5%)

EMRA:                                  €1,200,000 (5%)

Ist Round of Rural Approved Projects Nov 2018

Urban Regeneration and Development Fund projects approved under the 1st round

Posted into: The AssemblyGeneral

Urban Regeneration and Development Fund projects approved under the 1st round

The Southern Regional Assembly welcomes the allocation of funding to key regional projects. A funding package for the Southern region of €35,809,000, demonstrates Government's commitment to support the proposed objectives in the Draft Regional Spatial and Economic Strategy, which will go on this display for a ten week public consultation in the next days. The funding package for urban based projects will be delivered across the 3 Metropolitan Areas of Cork, Limerick Shannon and Waterford with €13,034,000 for category A and €6,333,500 category for B projects. This is augmented by a package approved for regional drivers of €15,560,000 for category A projects in Tipperary, Clare, Kerry, Cork County, Wexford, Kilkenny and Waterford County  and €881,500 for category B projects in Clare, Carlow and Kerry.

https://www.housing.gov.ie/planning/national-planning-framework/taoiseach-leo-varadkar-td-ministers-eoghan-murphy-td-josepha

The Investment Plan for Europe:  Financing Energy Efficiency

The Investment Plan for Europe:  Financing Energy Efficiency

The Investment Plan for Europe:

Financing Energy Efficiency

 

(Hosted in Dublin by European investment Bank (EIB), The Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland (SBCI) and The Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI))

On the 8th November 2018 the EIB – European Investment Advisory Hub, the European Commission, the SBCU and the SEAI, hosted an event in Dublin examining how energy efficiency is financed in Europe. The Minister for Communications, Climate Action and the Environment, Richard Bruton T.D opened the event and highlighted the importance of providing low cost finance options if ambitious targets are to be met.   

“We need to change how we live now, if we are to secure a sustainable future for all.  This is a profound challenge to every citizen, every enterprise, every public service and every community.  The reality is that our current trajectory with regard to sustainable energy use is not where it needs to be.  We are making progress, but we need to do more and do it quickly.  Lack of funds is one of the main reasons homeowners are not carrying out much needed energy upgrades, that’s why low-cost finance options for these upgrades are so important.” Minister for Communications, Climate Action and the Environment, Richard Bruton T.D.

Josephine Maguire (SEAI) moderated the panel on Energy Efficiency in the residential sector following presentations from Adrian Zambrano (Institutional Mandate Management, EIF) – Energy Efficiency Smart Finance for Smart Buildings Programme and Karl Purcell (SEAI) – Behavioural Insights. They were joined on the panel by Paul KENNY (CEO Tipperary Energy), James Carroll (Trinity College Post Doc researcher) and Marion Jammet (Development Manager, IGBC) 

Rose Power (EMPOWER) and Enda Hogan (FIRESPOL) of The Southern Regional Assembly attended the conference on 8th November 2018.  The conference was a good opportunity to network and provided insights into financing energy efficiency.  Conclusion of conference, a lot of work is being done in financing energy efficiency, but we have a lot further to go to find a commercially viable financial instrument solution for financing energy efficiency into the future.  

The Investment Plan for Europe Conference

Interreg NWE’s Call 8 Closes with Strong Irish Presence

Interreg NWE’s Call 8 Closes with Strong Irish Presence

Interreg NWE’s Call 8 Closes with Strong Irish Presence

 

Interreg North-West Europe’s eight funding call closed on 22/11/18 and has shown continued Irish interest in the programme. Of the 69 applications received, 31 involved both public and private sector organisations from across the country. The outcome will be known in early February.

 

Interreg North-West Europe supports cooperation projects across a significant part of the EU with the aim to reduce disparities between these regions to increase performance in the areas of innovation, low carbon, and resource and materials efficiency. A variety of Irish organisations are involved in 34 of the 70 projects which have been approved by programme across these three priorities.

 

The programme received 35 innovation, 14 low carbon, and 20 resource and materials efficiency applications.  The split is more even from an Irish perspective, with 12 innovation, 9 low carbon, and 10 resource and materials efficiency.  Most applicants are located in the Southern and the Eastern & Midlands regions, with a quarter based in the Northern & Western region.

 

The programme will launch the ninth call in December with an anticipated deadline set for June.  For further information about Interreg North West Europe, please contact Siobhan Rudden at the Southern Regional Assembly: srudden@southernassembly.ie or 051 860700.

MATCH-UP Press Release November 2018

MATCH-UP Press Release November 2018

Matching Integration between the four main low carbon modes of transport –MATCH-UP first local event in Dublin

  • Local Transport is crucial to control air pollution and maintain low level of pollutants in our regions
  • The project aims at fostering multimodality at local level to improve public transport

 

With increasing levels of air pollution, CO2 emissions and traffic congestion in the EU the development of sustainable multimodal mobility becomes one of the EU key challenges. Therefore, the Southern Regional Assembly as a partner in the MATCH-UP project is investigating the integrated strategies that are needed to enhance an effective modal interchange and a higher integration between land use and transport planning processes.

MATCH-UP Press Release November 2018

EMPOWER Press Release November 2018

Posted into: The AssemblyGeneral

EMPOWER Press Release November 2018

The Southern Regional Assembly along with our Stakeholders – Brian Cassidy & John Walsh of Cork City Council and Cathal Brady of Ultan Technologies attended the Energy Efficiency Technical Workshop in Almada, Portugal on 24th and 25th of October 2018 and hosted by AGENEAL.

At the Energy Monitoring Workshop in Almada relevant good practices were presented by different experts from Ireland, Germany, Italy, Spain, Sweden, Portugal, Slovenia, France and Poland.  The Irish presentation was given by Brian Cassidy, Senior Executive Engineer from Cork City Council who in conjunction with the EMPOWER project will be coordinating a pilot programme to install wireless energy monitoring equipment into social housing apartments in Cork as part of their deep retrofitting programme. 

The main objective of all presentations was to reduce energy consumption and thereby reduce carbon dioxide emissions. Within the workshop the EMPOWER project also joined forces with another European project named QUANTUM to reduce energy consumption in buildings.

EMPOWER Press Release November 2018

MARIE Interreg Europe Press Release November 2018

MARIE Interreg Europe Press Release November 2018

                                                                                                                    MARIE – November 2018

                                                                                              Mainstreaming Responsible Innovation in Europe

Inclusive and Sustainable Responsible Research & Innovation

 

More citizens are involved in science through public engagement. Natural scientists and social scientists have formed collaborations. Users are leading innovation. Open access trends are changing the publishing system. Gender equality has gained political momentum. Together, these efforts form a European-wide approach called Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI). It implies that all of society (researchers, citizens, policy makers, businesses, educational institutions, etc.) work together during the whole of a research and innovation process to better align the process and its outcomes with the values, needs and expectations of society which is inclusive and creates sustainable research and innovation. The Southern Regional Assembly as a partner in the MARIE project is seeking to improve regional public policies that supports the delivery of Responsible Research and innovation in Smart Specialisation Strategy (S3) sectors.

 

 

MARIE, a 5 year, 10-partners project was approved for a grant of €1.62m by the Interreg Europe Programme in 2016 and commenced in February 2017 at a meeting in Cesena, Italy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MARIE Press Release November 2018

MARIE- INTERREG EUROPE

Posted into: EU Programmes

MARIE- INTERREG EUROPE
Find out more about MARIE Interreg Europe in this short video..................
 
 

 

NWE News

NWE News

If you want to know what projects funded by Interreg North West Europe are working on, have a look at our new YouTube channel. 

 

Some of the first projects to be featured on the programme’s new social media channel have strong Irish participation, Codex4SME and Biobase4SME.

NUI Galway and WESTBIC are partners on Codex4SME which is improving healthcare by enhanced adoption of personalized medicine in North-West Europe by establishing a network to support SMEs along the value chain of Companion diagnostics development.  Watch their story here.

 

 

TCBB Resource is a partner on Biobase4SME which is helping start-ups and SMEs in the bio-based economy to overcome technological and non-technological barriers to bring their innovation (new products, processes and services) to market. Watch their story here.

 

 

For further information on the Interreg NWE programme and how to apply, contact Siobhán Rudden, National Contact Point at srudden@southernassembly.ie

Project Ideas Hatching in North West Europe

Project Ideas Hatching in North West Europe

Almost 200 participants from 8 countries, including Ireland, attended Interreg North West Europe’s Project Ideas Lab on 2nd October in Paris to plan for Call 8 applications.  The twice-yearly event brings potential project applicants together to meet, plan and develop new project ideas in the themes of innovation, low carbon and resource efficiency. 

 

With Call 8 open until 22nd November and over €184 million ERDF remaining, there are still opportunities for organisations with innovative ideas to apply.  Over 50 people presented their project idea in Paris, seeking partners from all eligible countries to join their application.

 

Half of the 56 projects that Interreg NWE has approved date have Irish participation, seeing €12.4 million in ERDF approved to Irish organisations.  The 56 approved projects are active across all three priorities, 21 in innovation, 24 in low carbon, and 11 in resource and materials efficiency.

 

Interested parties can contact Siobhán Rudden at the Southern Regional Assembly for further details on Interreg North West Europe, funding available and project ideas – srudden@southernassembly.ie or visit www.nweurope.eu

Match-Up Project Workshop, Dublin, 31st October 2018

Match-Up Project Workshop, Dublin, 31st October 2018

MATCH-UP project focuses on the optimization of the places where people change
between transport modes. By considering 4 main types of low-carbon means of transport
(Walking/cycling; Rail transport; Public transport; Green vehicles), MATCH-UP aims at
achieving significant improvements of modal interchange within 4 involved countries (IE,
DE, PT, RO). To reach this aim we in the Southern Regional Assembly want to have you
on board!
The launch event of the call for interest will present MATCH-UP goals and activities in an
informal environment, where transport users, associations and citizens as well as other
stakeholder groups will be invited to get to know our project and to understand how to get
involved in future activities.


When? 11.00 on Wednesday 31st October 2018 until 13.30 when a light lunch of soup and sandwiches will be available


Where? Wynn’s Hotel Dublin,35/39 Lower Abbey Street, Dublin 1


Who? Transport users, transport providers,environmental associations, civil society associations,students, citizens and everybody who is interested in the topic.


How? We will meet for a short workshop presenting the main objective of the project and where different speakers will be invited to present their point of view on the multimodal mobility in our region.


Join us!

Match Up Project Workshop Dublin 31st October

Creative Europe Workshop

Posted into: General

Creative Europe Workshop

Practical Training session with Creative Europe Desk Ireland

 

Monday 8 October 10am – 1pm

Garter Lane Arts Centre (Networking lunch included)

 

Developing European projects and accessing Creative Europe funding for culture, heritage, craft and design organisations and professionals.

This event is part of the Well Festival of Arts and Wellbeing which will run from the 8th to the 13th October.

This event is organised by the Waterford Europe Direct Information Centre, The Creative Europe Desk Ireland and The Waterford Cultural Quarter.

 

Creative Europe is the EU’s main funding programme for the culture and creative sectors. This free workshop will be an interactive session for arts, culture, heritage, craft and design organisations to explore ideas for developing transnational working practices and to learn about accessing Creative Europe funding. Creative Europe Ireland Help Desk staff will also be on hand to answer practical questions about the application process.

 

The Lineup

The session will begin with an overview of the Creative Europe Culture sub-programme and in particular the Co-operation projects fund by Audrey Keane of the Creative Europe Desk Ireland’s Culture office.

 

This will be followed by Round table discussions exploring the different aspects of developing and running a European project. Hear from Creative Europe beneficiaries who will share their experiences:

 

  • Chris Clarke, The Glucksman Gallery (VIBE project)
  • Clodagh Whelan, West Cork Literary Festival (READ ON project)
  • Edel Doran, First Fortnight Festival (NEFELE project)
  • Katherine Collins, Waterford City and County Council (Waterford Walls)

 

This will be an opportunity to learn from the experience of those already involved in projects and to test your own ideas for a project. Join a table with a Creative Europe beneficiary and be part of a conversation about what’s involved in project development, partnerships, tips and advice for ensuring your Creative Europe application has the best chance of being supported and more.

Following this delegates are invited to stay on for a networking lunch with more opportunities to share learning and ideas.

 

Who should attend?

Creative Europe funding is open to organisations (that are legally registered entities). The funding supports projects that are developed with partner organisations from across Europe and beyond. Therefore, this workshop is suitable for culture professionals representing such organisations that have an interest in developing projects with European partners.

 

For more information contact europedirect@waterfordcouncil.ie

45 Stories” exhibition in Leinster House

Posted into: EU ProgrammesGeneral

45 Stories” exhibition in Leinster House

 

The Leas-Chathaoirleach of Seanad Éireann formally launched “45 Stories,” a travelling European Commission exhibition showcasing the many ways that EU membership has benefitted Ireland over the past 45 years. A number of the stories featured in the exhibition have benefited from European Regional Development Funding through the Border, Midland & Western Regional Operational Programme.

The event in Leinster House featured pop-up displays of content from the “45 Stories” booklet and speeches from the Leas-Chathaoirleach of Seanad Éireann, Senator Paul Coghlan; the Head of European Commission Representation in Ireland, Gerry Kiely; and European Affairs Minister Helen McEntee. Citizens featured in many of the “45 Stories” also attended.

“Since Ireland joined the then-EEC in 1973, our people have developed a deep appreciation of what it means to be a European and a true partner to our fellow EU Member States,” said Senator Coghlan. “This exhibition and accompanying booklet contain rich personal stories of the real ways that European cooperation opens the door to economic opportunity and cultural enrichment, both for Irish people and for our fellow Europeans wishing to strengthen ties with Ireland.”

Gerry Kiely said visitors to the travelling exhibition and readers of the booklet would not help but be impressed by the sweep and scale of EU involvement in driving positive change for Ireland.

“EU laws and initiatives have, among others, protected our environment, created great opportunities to study and trade abroad, financed vital infrastructure in Ireland, and helped prevent discrimination,” Mr. Kiely said. “Ireland’s great farming tradition also benefits greatly from EU payments and support. All of these positive dynamics of EU membership are told in the human stories contained in this exhibition.”

After the launch, Members of the Oireacthas had an opportunity to discuss the stories further with  individuals featured and representatives from the public bodies involved in selecting and funding a number of the stories including the Northern & Western Regional Assembly.

Download the “45 Stories” booklet here and follow the project on social media using the #EU45stories hashtag.

The “45 Stories” exhibition will go on public display from Thursday through the month of October in the European Commission office in Ireland on Mount Street Lower in Dublin 2. The exhibition will travel to Clones in November, Cork in December, Ballinasloe in January 2019, Blanchardstown in February, Sligo in March, Letterkenny in April, Nenagh in May and Waterford in June.

#EUINMYREGION at #Ploughing18

#EUINMYREGION at #Ploughing18

Yes, we’re back again at the ploughing, telling the good news story of EU funded projects in your area. These are projects that are co-funded by the ERDF and the Irish exchequer under the Southern and Eastern Regional Programme 2014-2020.

 

We are one of the 1,700 Exhibitors at the National Ploughing Championship, the biggest outdoor event in Europe, attracting 291,500 Visitors over the three days.

 

Come visit us and our colleagues from the BMW Regional Programme and the ESF Programme. We are sharing a stand in the European Commission Representation in Ireland tent, block 3, row 12, stand no. 265. Look forward to seeing you!

Regional Briefing on the Urban and Rural Regeneration Funds

Posted into: General

Regional Briefing on the Urban and Rural Regeneration Funds

The Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government (DHPLG) together with Department of Rural and Community Development (DRCD) held joint regional briefings in respect of both the Urban and Rural Regeneration Funds that were launched in July as part of Project Ireland 2040.  The briefings focused on assisting and informing bodies that may be considering making a bid for funding to either or both Funds, particularly now as bids are being formulated and questions arise.

Provision is made in the National Development Plan (NDP) for €2bn to 2027 for the urban fund and €1bn to 2027 for the rural fund, to support implementation of the National Planning Framework (NPF). 

The briefing for the Southern Region took place on the 5th September in the Clayton Silver Springs Hotel, Cork and was well attended by potential fund applicants from a broad background. 

Please click here to view presentations given on the day.

DPHLG
RRDF

When Science Met Business

left to right: CONNECT researchers Dr Steven Davy (TSSG at WIT), Dr Brendan Jennings (TSSG at WIT), Javier Torres Sanchez (Tyndall National Institute, Cork), Dr Alan Davy (TSSG at WIT).

When Science Met Business

 

When Science met Business was held in ArcLabs, Waterford Institute of Technology on Friday 8th June 2018. The Southern Regional Assembly held the event, in association with the Babson College Entrepreneurship Research Conference (BCERC), during which exciting research, emerging from our third level institutes and research centres was highlighted. Cutting edge examples of academia and industry collaborations, from ‘Fit-Bit’ for Cows to Intelligent Transport systems, a virtual reality glove with possible market opportunity for use by people effected by Parkinson’s Disease/Stroke. With many other award-winning examples described, we can be assured of the creativity residing in our knowledge economy region.

Prof.  Bill O’Gorman, Director for Research, Business Management and Organisation School, WIT, addressing the event noted the “wealth of talent on the panel of esteemed speakers, acknowledged the supports provided through the ERDF programme and the expertise and guidance afforded the researchers through the Science Foundation Ireland and Enterprise Ireland led co-funded schemes”.

Fundamental to the ERDF co-funded regional programme that the Southern Regional Assembly manages, is an impetus to impact positively on job creation, while fostering entrepreneurship and consolidating and building on the Research, Development and Innovation expertise in the region. Providing supports to strengthen the links between HEI research and industry.

This event allowed us to showcase exemplar projects from SFI CONNECT Research Centre, SmartHerd, Telecommunications Software and Systems Group (TSSG), Liquidedge, Tyndall National Institute, Software as a service solution for Banking, Regulatory, Compliance and Risk, University College Cork; Electrical Analytics Technology Ltd, Irish Manufacturing Research (IMR), and the SEAM Centre, WIT.

 

Cllr. Larry O’Brien, Cathaoirleach of the Assembly told the assembled audience that “we are proud of the work we do in the Assembly, we don’t wish to hide our light under a bushel. All that we achieve in relation to this aspect of the regional programme is as a result of our partners, Enterprise Ireland and Science Foundation Ireland”.

 

Stephen Blair, Director referring to the “impressive resource of third level institutes and research centres in the region, commended the work they continue to engage in with their industry partners, the collaboration which is paying dividends in multiples, strengthens the region, as a location of choice, in which to invest, work and live”.

 

Professor Andrew Zacharakis, Babson College Key Note Speaker speaking to the entrepreneur in all present and describing his Star of Success’ said “now more than ever, the world needs entrepreneurs of all kinds who think and act entrepreneurially—who can transform opportunity into reality, and create social and economic value for themselves and for others”.

 

ENDS/

When Science Met Business Press Release

Empower Study Visit to Cork

Posted into: EU ProgrammesGeneral

Empower Study Visit to Cork

 

Ireland shares good practices with German, Spanish, Slovenian and Polish partners

EMPOWER

April 2018

 

EMPOWER is an exciting project involving a partnership of 9 European regions working together to share experiences, solutions and good practices to reduce carbon emissions and explore innovative methods of financing energy projects with an overall objective to develop and deliver better public policy in these areas. 

Over the past few months, EMPOWER partners have been very busy, sharing their experiences and learning about good practices in other Europe countries through a series of Study Visits in Lorient, Maribor, Mazovia, Kalmar, Cork, Magdeburg, Santander and Almada.

 

EMPOWER’s Irish partner the Southern Regional Assembly, with the assistance of Cork City Council and Cork Institute of Technology, recently hosted a very successful Study visit which attracted participants from Germany, Spain, Slovenia and Poland.  The purpose of the study trip to Cork was to learn more about successful energy monitoring programmes currently being rolled out here in Ireland including SEAI’s Public Sector Reporting and Monitoring Programme and OPW’s Optimising Power @ Work Campaign.  The Programme Managers responsible for implementing these Irish examples, generously shared their experience and expertise with participants during the visit. 

 

The Irish partner gained in-depth knowledge from the French, German and Portuguese partners who shared their knowledge and experience of energy monitoring pilot schemes, monitoring technologies and innovative and more sustainable ways to finance energy projects. 

 

EMPOWER is a five-year, inter-regional project which started in January 2017.  The project aims to reduce carbon output by dynamically monitoring energy efficiency in buildings, with a special focus on innovative methods of financing.  Consisting of 9-partners: from Ireland, Slovenia, Portugal, Italy, France, Sweden, Poland, Germany and Spain.  The project was approved for a grant of € 1.90 m by the Interreg Europe Programme, through the European Regional Development Fund. 

 

Learn more about EMPOWER at www.interregeurope.eu/empower

 

  FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, CONTACT:

   

  Southern Regional Assembly

  Orla Kelly, okelly@southernassembly.ie

 

 

 

 

 

Ireland shares good practices with German, Spanish, Slovenian and Polish partners

EMPOWER

April 2018

 

EMPOWER is an exciting project involving a partnership of 9 European regions working together to share experiences, solutions and good practices to reduce carbon emissions and explore innovative methods of financing energy projects with an overall objective to develop and deliver better public policy in these areas. 

Over the past few months, EMPOWER partners have been very busy, sharing their experiences and learning about good practices in other Europe countries through a series of Study Visits in Lorient, Maribor, Mazovia, Kalmar, Cork, Magdeburg, Santander and Almada.

 

EMPOWER’s Irish partner the Southern Regional Assembly, with the assistance of Cork City Council and Cork Institute of Technology, recently hosted a very successful Study visit which attracted participants from Germany, Spain, Slovenia and Poland.  The purpose of the study trip to Cork was to learn more about successful energy monitoring programmes currently being rolled out here in Ireland including SEAI’s Public Sector Reporting and Monitoring Programme and OPW’s Optimising Power @ Work Campaign.  The Programme Managers responsible for implementing these Irish examples, generously shared their experience and expertise with participants during the visit. 

 

The Irish partner gained in-depth knowledge from the French, German and Portuguese partners who shared their knowledge and experience of energy monitoring pilot schemes, monitoring technologies and innovative and more sustainable ways to finance energy projects. 

 

EMPOWER is a five-year, inter-regional project which started in January 2017.  The project aims to reduce carbon output by dynamically monitoring energy efficiency in buildings, with a special focus on innovative methods of financing.  Consisting of 9-partners: from Ireland, Slovenia, Portugal, Italy, France, Sweden, Poland, Germany and Spain.  The project was approved for a grant of € 1.90 m by the Interreg Europe Programme, through the European Regional Development Fund. 

 

Learn more about EMPOWER at www.interregeurope.eu/empower

 

  FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, CONTACT:

   

  Southern Regional Assembly

  Orla Kelly, okelly@southernassembly.ie

 

 

 

 

 

When Science met Business

When Science met Business

The Southern Regional Assembly in association with the Babson College Entrepreneurship Research Conference (BCERC) will host an event When Science met Business on Friday 8th June 2018 in ArcLabs, Waterford Institute of Technology.  The event will provide a forum for researchers and industry to explore potential mutually beneficial collaborations.

The  Assembly manages a €500 million regional investment programme running from 2014 to 2020. The programme is co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the Irish Exchequer with Sustainable Urban Development co-funded by Local Authorities. A core objective of the programme is to strengthen the innovation dividend for the region.

Fostering and supporting collaboration between science and industry is key to improving our innovation standing among the regions of Europe and Internationally.

Past programmes supported the provision of infrastructure and the increase in the numbers of researchers employed in the R&DI third level sector.

The primary focus under this programme is to improve the competitiveness of the regional economy. This will be achieved through a number of routes, including the Science Foundation Ireland’s Research Centres where scientists and engineers are linked in partnerships across academia and industry to address crucial research questions. Enterprise Ireland’s Commercialisation Fund and Innovation Partnership schemes play a crucial role in supporting the creation of technology based start-up companies and the transfer of innovations developed in Higher Education Institutes and Research Performing Organisations to industry in the region. 

Mindful of the honour afforded us to associate our event with the Babson College Entrepreneurship Research Conference (BCERC) to be held in Waterford Institute of Technology, we want  When Science met Business, to showcase exemplar projects and in line with the spirit and objectives of the Regional Programme, facilitate where possible industry/research engagement.

The format for this half-day morning event will be a series of talks and market-place activities where attendees can hear from and meet with researchers and key programme actors. The event will be one of our #EU in My Region events for 2018. 

The Event Programme will be posted on our website www.southernassembly.ie and on our social media accounts.

Please note the event is free of charge but registration is necessary.

Registration on eventbrite is now open.

When Science Met Business Programme

Contracts signed for Dun Laoghaire Baths Project

Posted into:

Contracts signed for Dun Laoghaire Baths Project

The Southern Regional Assembly were delighted to attend the Contract signing on the 10th April 2018  between dlr and the joint venture of SIAC* and Mantovani Group** for the new Dun Laoghaire Baths project.

The new Dún Laoghaire Baths, which has been designed by dlr Architects' Department, will see a new public café linked to an outdoor terrace with views over the Bay, along with studio workspaces for artists and new life guard facilities. New public toilet facilities at street level will be fully accessible for the mobility impaired and a new jetty and changing areas will provide access to the water's edge for swimmers and landing points for canoes, kayaks and other water sports equipment.

The development will take approximately 22 months to complete and will open to the public in the spring of 2020. The new Dún Laoghaire Baths will be a long-term, public amenity for the area and county.

The project will breathe new life into the seafront and will attract more visitors to Dún Laoghaire town.

Dlr is investing heavily in the development of the Dún Laoghaire Baths as part of a whole scheme of works for the county under the three year Capital Programme, which will see an investment of over €742m invested in dlr county from 2018-2020. The project will cost circa €10m and has been part funded by the European Regional Development Fund in conjuction with the Southern Regional Assembly.

1. Left to Right: Andreé Dargan, Bob Hannan, Frank Austin, dlr, An Cathaoirleach Cllr Tom Murphy, Martin Maher, SIAC, Yvonne Cooney, Southern Regional Assembly and Giampaolo Chiarotto, Mantovani at the contract signing for the development of Dún Laoghaire Baths. The new Baths will open to the public in spring 2020.

Southern Regional Assembly elects Cathaoirleach for 2018 term

Posted into: The AssemblyGeneral

Pictured in the Assembly Chamber (Left to Right): Mr. Stephen Blair, Director of the Southern Regional Assembly, newly elected Cathaoirleach Cllr. Larry O’Brien, with outgoing Cathaoirleach, Cllr. John Brennan.

Southern Regional Assembly elects Cathaoirleach for 2018 term

At the meeting of the Southern Regional Assembly held on Friday, 9th February 2018 in Waterford City, Cllr. Larry O’Brien was elected Cathaoirleach for the forthcoming year.  Cllr. O’Brien is the first Wexford member to be elected to this position.

Cathaoirleach

Cllr. Larry O’Brien represents Wexford County Council on the Southern Regional Assembly.  Cllr. O’Brien was elected to Wexford County Council in 1991, where he served as Cathaoirleach of the Council on two occasions in 2007 and 2009.  He is currently the Chairperson of the Roads Strategic Policy Committee (SPC) in Wexford County Council. 

Cllr. O’Brien is a former member of the South-East Regional Authority where he also served as Cathaoirleach during his time with the Authority and is currently a member of the Southern Regional Assembly since its establishment in 2015.

As a full-time public representative, Cllr. O’Brien is a member of the Fianna Gael party.

Cllr. O’Brien has a keen interest in G.A.A. and Motor Sport and he is married with one daughter and two sons.

Cllr. O’Brien stated that “he is looking forward to his term as Cathaoirleach of the Southern Regional Assembly, as it is a particularly important time for the Assemblies in developing the Regional Spatial and Economic Strategies for the Southern Region and he is looking forward to driving the Assembly forward in this process, with the help and co-operation of his colleagues on the Assembly”.

For further information please contact:

Sharon Murray, Corporate Affairs, Southern Regional Assembly

Tel: 051-860700 / Mobile: 087-6460938 or email: smurray@southernassembly.ie

Women in Business 2018

Posted into: The AssemblyGeneral

Women in Business 2018

ESTABLISHED in January 2015, the Southern Regional Assembly (SRA) is one of three assemblies in Ireland.

The region includes all of the counties in Munster plus the South East counties of Carlow, Kilkenny and Wexford. The Assembly has many responsibilities including the management of European co-funded programmes and economic and spatial planning for the region. We act as the national contact point for a number of EU-funded transnational programmes.

Essentially, our role in relation to European programmes is to make sure the grants disbursed to co-funded projects or small businesses are spent in accordance with the rules laid down by the European Commission for the programmes.

Among our responsibilities is the formulation of the Regional Spatial and Economic Strategies (RSES). This process for this new responsibility I snow underway following the publication of the National Planning Framework and the National Development Plan on Friday 16th February. It will be the first time that such strategies are devised at a regional level in Ireland. The members of the Assembly play a key role in the development of the strategy for the Southern region.

A part of our role is to promote effectiveness in local government and public services in the region to aid transparency between plans, policies and proposals of these organisations.

The Assembly has a predominantly female staff, leading and supporting across these key roles. For details on the individual roles please check out the staff section on our website www.southernassembly.ie.

In recognition of the energy, the dedication and the creativity brought to the workplace, on International Women’s Day, we are acknowledging the valuable role each of these female staff play in conducting the business of the Assembly: Breda Curran; Derville Brennan; Emma Doran; Eve Hayden; Karen Coughlan; Marie Harnett; Edel Hunt; Oonagh Messette; Orla Kelly; Rita McGarvey; Róisín Kiely; Sharon Murray; Siobhán Rudden; Yvonne Cooney and Yvonne O’ Brien. On this day we would also like to acknowledge the female members of the Assembly too, including: Cllr Deirdre Forde, Cork County Council; Cllr Deirdre O’Brien, Cork County Council and Cllr Mary Shields, Cork City Council.

To find out more about the SRA and its work contact the office at Assembly House, 30 O’Connell Street, on (051) 860700 or follow us on

    

Urban Development Network Workshop

Posted into: The AssemblyGeneral

Urban Development Network Workshop

An Urban Development Network Workshop will take place in Cork City on 27th March 2018. The aim of the event is to exchange ideas and find solutions to common challenges in implementing sustainable urban development strategies in Ireland and to learn more about the Urban Innovative Actions and what cities in other Member States are doing in addressing these challenges.

The workshop is open to the cities and towns in Ireland implementing sustainable urban development and cities/towns with an interest in the Urban Innovative Actions. Organisations active in urban development as well as ERDF/ESF Managing Authorities are also welcome to attend.

The workshop will be organised in the context of the Urban Development Network (art 9 of1301/2013 ERDF regulation) that aims to support capacity building and knowledge exchange between urban authorities. All participants will have the possibility to be actively involved in the discussion and solve technical questions on potential projects with experts.

The workshop will be closed with an Urban Conversation framed within the Committee of the Regions' initiative entitled "Reflecting on Europe". Citizens will have the opportunity to dialogue with European institutional representatives on the current challenges that the EU face.

Click here for full agenda.

Please register here for this free event by the 20th March 2018.  

For further information please click here
 

Project Ireland 2040

Cllr John Brennan, Southern Regional Assembly with An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar

Project Ireland 2040

Cllr John Brennan, Southern Regional Assembly attended the launch of the National Planning Framework - Ireland 2040, #Project Ireland 2040, in IT Sligo today.

The Project Ireland 2040 documents are available for downloading here:

Building Ireland's Future Executive summary

National Planning Framework

National Development Plan 2018 - 2027

Southern Regional Assembly, Outright Winners in the Regional Development Award

Mr. Stephen Blair, Director, accepting the award on behalf of the Southern Regional Assembly. Photographer: Noel Brown Photography

Southern Regional Assembly, Outright Winners in the Regional Development Award

The Southern Regional Assembly is garnering critical praise for its contribution to promoting strategic planning and sustainable development in the Southern Region

Established on 1st January 2015, the Southern Regional Assembly is one of three assemblies in the Republic of Ireland which were created following the dissolution of the BMW and Southern & Eastern Regional Assemblies. The former 8 regional authorities and 2 regional assemblies were consolidated through the government’s regional reform process under the Local Government Reform Act 2014 to form the Southern, the Northern and Western and the Eastern and Midland regions. The three new Assemblies incorporate the functions of both the former regional authorities and assemblies, with significant enhancement of some powers, particularly in relation to spatial planning and economic development.

During the coming year the assemblies are charged with preparing new Regional Spatial & Economic Strategies (RSES) for their regions. The RSES are successors to the Regional Planning Guidelines. Out of the 33 councillors appointed to the assembly in the Southern region, 27 are from constituent local authorities and 6 were appointed by virtue of their membership of the Committee of the Regions. The councillors are supported by the staff of the Assembly, mostly based at the Assembly headquarters in Waterford City.

The Southern Region consists of the administrative areas of Carlow, Cork, Clare, Kerry, Kilkenny, Tipperary and Wexford County Councils, Limerick City and County Council, Waterford City and County Council and Cork City Council. The region covers about 42% of the total land area of the country and had a total population of almost 1.6 million people at the time of the 2016 census. The Assembly normally meets on the second Friday of every month at its headquarters in Waterford.

The regional reform process conferred additional powers upon the Assemblies who are tasked with managing and monitoring EU co-funded programmes, co ordinating and supporting strategic planning and sustainable development and promoting effective local government and public services in their respective regions, in conjunction with the National Oversight and Audit Commission. “We are the designated Managing Authority for ERDF co-funded Regional Programme. This role positions us to draft the regional programme and ensure that those regional needs which can be addressed under the scope of the EU funding can be served and provide dividends to our region,” says Director, Stephen Blair. “We view as a critical role, our newly minted responsibility of preparing a long-term twelve to twenty years Regional Spatial and Economic Strategy (RSES) for the whole of our region. The overarching purpose of the RSES is to support the implementation of the National Planning Framework (NPF) and the economic policies and objectives of the Government. “We have a vision for our region and we can provide the framework through which this vision can be delivered. What organisation wouldn’t want to be at the helm of this new and exciting course for their region, to partner with the relevant state and local agencies in a co-production of a strategy that will harness the resources and impetus to create and sustain jobs and identify regional strengths and opportunities. “We have a strong region whose deeper potential will be liberated through smart and strategic planning. We are working on identifying the regional attributes that are essential to enhancing regional economic performance including the quality of the environment, the qualities of cities, towns and rural areas as well as physical infrastructure, and social, community and cultural facilities. This will enable us to advance proposals for augmenting the social and economic performance of the region and we intend publishing an Issues Paper and commencing a formal pre-draft consultation on Monday 20th November.” Acknowledging the significant challenges facing our country, Mr Blair said decisive leadership and a strong and effective set of national and regional strategies are urgently required.

“Members and the executive of the Assembly are happy to be to the fore in meeting these challenges,” he said. “We are working across state agencies, government departments and our constituent local authorities to enhance the quality of life of the people of the Southern Region. “We are uniquely positioned to offer a voice and internal cohesion in securing a sustainable future for the region. In the formulation of strategy, we are committed to the overarching principle of the protection of the environment combined with an impetus to improving social equality, an impetus which will serve to copper-fasten and safeguard our future.”

The Northern and Western and the Southern Regional Assemblies manage the ERDF co-funded Regional Programmes and are programme partners or perform a range of functions in relation to a number of European Territorial Cooperation Programmes.

This article is published in The Public Sector magazine Awards Issue, December 2017.

Join our Team - Programme Executive

Posted into: General

Join our Team - Programme Executive

The Southern Regional Assembly, wishes to recruit a full-time permanent Programme Executive to assist in the financial management, monitoring and evaluation duties of the Southern & Eastern Regional Operational Programme.

The closing date for receipt of completed application forms is Thursday, 11th January 2018.

Application forms and further particulars can be downloaded from our recruitment section 

For any queries please email kcoughlan@southernassembly.ie 

Public Consultation

Public Consultation

So what’s new in the Southern Region?

We’ve had spatial planning before, we’ve had economic planning before but up until now we haven’t witnessed the marriage of both at a regional level in Ireland. Today we’ve published an Issues paper to kick-start a public dialogue on how by nurturing that marriage, the well-being and prosperity of the people of the Southern region will be safeguarded and improved.  

The Regional Assemblies of which there are three, are each tasked with working with state agencies, Government departments and their constituent local authorities, to co-produce  Regional Spatial and Economic Strategies or RSES for short.

The RSES will reflect Government policy as set out in the draft National Planning Framework (NPF) Ireland 2040. The public consultation for the NPF concluded on Friday 10th November and its publication by Government is anticipated shortly. In essence the RSES will be the successor to the Regional Planning Guidelines but instead of guidelines what we will have is a strategy for the region, a vision for the region, not one that stitches on economic and social needs on to the side of spatial plans but one that informs how we plan holistically for our future and how we collectively strive to improve the quality of life for all the citizens of our region.

The scale of Ireland’s growth since the early 1990’s has been unprecedented, notwithstanding the impact of economic recession. Our population has increased by more than 1.1 million people, to 4.75 million. Our housing stock has expanded by more than 750,000, to just over two million homes. Numbers in employment have also grown by more than 660,000, to more than two million people in 2017.

Current trends suggest that the Republic’s population could increase by a further one million people over the period to 2040. This is going to require an enormous shift in thinking in how and where people live, work, recreate and travel. The development pressures arising, along with the need to address development legacies from the past require innovative and long-term thinking.

Effective regional development is about embracing the spatial development opportunities specific to each of the regions. This requires choices to be made which will reflect the differing needs and potential of the regions and will therefore result in economic and spatial strategies which differ from one region to another. These tailored regional strategies are to be developed and implemented by the Regional Assemblies through new RSESs.

Addressing a meeting of the members of the Assembly who gathered to deliberate on the Issues paper in Assembly House, Stephen Blair, Director acknowledged the importance of the process we are embarking upon. He said “we view as critical our newly minted responsibility of preparing a long-term twelve to twenty years Regional Spatial and Economic Strategy (RSES) for the whole of our region. The overarching purpose of the RSES is to support the implementation of the National Planning Framework (NPF) and the economic policies and objectives of the Government”.                                                  

On referring to the Assembly’s vision for the Southern region, Mr. Blair said “we can provide the framework through which this vision can be delivered. We are proud to be at the helm of this new and exciting course for the region, to partner with the relevant state and local agencies in a co-production of a strategy that will harness the resources and impetus to create and sustain quality jobs and identify regional strengths and opportunities.”

An Issues Paper and commencing a formal pre-draft consultation is publised on our website, see link below to the paper. This pre-draft consultation in the form of an Issues paper, opens the forum as widely as possible. Cllr. John Brennan, Cathaoirleach said “in an interdependent, connected, modern society, strategy formulation and plan making needs the buy-in of citizens and stakeholders if it is to succeed. Planning deliberatively to safeguard our environment, our futures, while keeping to the fore the principle of equality, augurs greater success for all”.

The Issues paper is published on our website and written submissions at this first stage of the Regional Spatial and Economic Strategy process are invited by post or email, by  Friday 16th  February 2018 at 5 pm.

 

Media contact: Derville Brennan, M. 087 7793755, E. dbrennan@southernassembly.ie; www.southernassembly.ie

Note for Editor:

Since 1st January 2015, three Regional Assemblies have been tasked with specific functions regarding spatial planning and economic development as well as EU funding programmes, oversight of local authority performance and Local Economic and Community Plans, and implementation of national policy.

 

The membership of the Regional Assemblies consists of members of the local authorities within each of the three regions and each of the Assemblies has been given a clear a leadership role to play in identifying regional policies and coordinating initiatives that support the delivery and implementation of national planning policy. It is also the role of the Regional Assemblies to co-ordinate local authorities to secure shared national and local objectives.

 

The Southern Region consists of the administrative areas of Carlow, Cork, Clare, Kerry, Kilkenny, Tipperary and Wexford County Councils, Limerick City and County Council, Waterford City and County Council and Cork City Council. The region covers about 42% of the total land area of the country and had a total population of almost 1.6 million people at the time of the 2016 census.

 

 

The Southern Region is endowed with a number of significant advantages such as:

  • Three out of four Regional Cities (Cork, Limerick and Waterford) located within the region
  • Positive population growth of almost 3% over the last five years
  • Rural areas characterised by resilient rural communities supported by a strong network of towns and villages
  • Good quality farm land with high agricultural yields and strong food processing capabilities
  • A modern and diverse industrial base with established cluster and specialisms in high value sectors such as pharmaceuticals, life sciences, aviation, precision engineering, ICT, food and beverages
  • An impressive record of employment growth with 62,600 new jobs created in the last five years
  • Two Universities and five Institutes of Technology with a combined full-time student population of approximately 55,000 with an additional 12,000 part-time students
  • Two out of three state airports at Shannon and Cork as well as two regional airports in Kerry and Waterford
  • Four out of five Tier 1 and Tier 2 Ports of National Significance at Cork, Shannon Foynes, Waterford and Rosslare
  • Net energy exporter with an abundance of clean renewable energy growth potential
  • An extensive coastline with significant Marine Resource potential

Key targets identified for the Southern Region include:

  • Population increase of between 350,000 and 375,000 people between now and the year 2040
  • Creation of 220,000 new jobs to support the above level of population increase
  • Population and jobs growth to be aligned to occur within the same functional area to minimise unsustainable commuting patterns
  • Cork City and suburbs population increasing by 115,000 additional people (an increase of more than 55%) from a population of 209,000 in 2016 to 324,000 by the year 2040
  • Limerick City and Suburbs population also increasing by more than 55% with an additional 52,000 people raising the population from 94,000 in 2016 to 146,000 by 2040
  • Waterford City and Suburbs population to increase by 30,000 people
  • Population growth for large towns with >10,000 population in 2016 should generally be 20-25%, which is ahead of projected national average growth.
  • Population growth of Ireland’s smaller towns and rural areas of 15%

4 FACTS YOU MIGHT NOT KNOW ABOUT EUROPE – IRELAND

4 FACTS YOU MIGHT NOT KNOW ABOUT EUROPE – IRELAND

Ireland 2007-2013 ex-post evaluation results

Last autumn, the European Commission completed the evaluation of the 2007-2013 programmes, providing key figures on the results of the EUR 346.5 billion invested to reduce disparities between regions and promote balanced and sustainable development across EU regions. Between 2007 and 2013, support from the European Regional Development Fund amounted to EUR 375 million in Ireland.

Investments were mainly made in the areas of:

  • Research and Innovation
  • Support to enterprises
  • Transport

For key achievements of Regional Policy in Ireland  follow this link.

The Southern and Eastern Regional Operational Programme 2007-2013 list of beneficiaries is available for downloading here.

60 Ways

 

The EU Commission published 60 good reasons for the EU - Why we need the European Union to coincide with the 60th Anniversary of the Treaty of Rome. Under the following 12 headings they consider ways that the European Union has imapcted positively on the citizens of the union.

  1. What Europe can be proud of  
  2. The EU strengthens  the economy and fosters prosperity 
  3. The EU ensures competition  and keeps big companies in check
  4. The European Union protects consumers
  5. The EU lowers the cost of living   
  6. The EU is committed to ensuring healthy food and a clean environment
  1. The EU makes it easier to travel and work in Europe
  2. Promoting education, research and culture
  3. The EU creates internal security  
  4. The EU plays its part on the world stage  
  5. The EU is helping with the global refugee crisis  
  6. The EU is cutting red tape  

The publication is available as a download here.

‘KICKBOXING, KINDNESS & GOING THE EXTRA MILE - GOOD PRACTICE FOR WORKING WITH NEETS UNDER SICAP’

Posted into: The AssemblyGeneral

‘KICKBOXING, KINDNESS & GOING THE EXTRA MILE - GOOD PRACTICE FOR WORKING WITH NEETS UNDER SICAP’

'KICKBOXING, KINDNESS & GOING THE EXTRA MILE - GOOD PRACTICE FOR WORKING WITH NEETS UNDER SICAP'

This research conducted on behalf of Pobal, aimed to uncover current good practice in Ireland in relation to the engagement of and service delivery to young people aged 15-24, who are not in employment, education or training (NEETs). The need for this research was identified by the Department of Rural and Community Development and Pobal. Service providers wanted more information on what interventions and approaches were most effective in creating positive change for young people, however, there is not a large amount of research available on this topic.

The findings are available for download here.

More than a club Launch

Posted into: EU Programmes

More than a Club Launch: Derek O Neill – FAI Project Manager, Richard Dunne, Kelly Davies - Viability

More than a club Launch

The Football Association of Ireland (FAI) and Vi-Ability Wales have joined forces for the More than a Club project. More than a Club’s aim is to capitalise on the popularity of football by turning local clubs into social enterprises that deliver a range of sport-based life science and educational programmes. The project will empower the clubs to recognise and use the powerful attraction of football and the value of their club brand locally in order to develop partnerships with statutory agencies and community groups to deliver important social programmes. Four Clubs will participate in this pilot project including Haverfordwest county, Cork City and Bohemian FC.

The project is being funded by the European Regional Development Fund via the Ireland Wales Co-Operation Programme.

The project was officially launched in the Aviva Stadium ahead of the Ireland Moldova World Cup Qualifier game.

 

Irish link to Interreg NWE project win at RegioStars Awards 2017

Posted into: EU Programmes

Irish link to Interreg NWE project win at RegioStars Awards 2017

Irish organisation, tcbb RESOURCE, celebrated a win with its partners for the BioBase NWE project at the recent RegioStars Awards 2017 ceremony on 10th October in Brussels in the category, “Smart Specialisation for SME Innovation”.   

The Irish-based technology centre was part of the 5-country partnership of bio-innovation agents which collaborated on BioBase NWE to support SMEs that wished to innovate according to the principles of the bio-based economy.  

The project provided financial, technological, training, networking and political support to SMEs from North West Europe active in the replacement of non-renewable resources with bio-mass.

The 3-year, €6 million project was funded under the Interreg North West Europe programme 2007-13. 

The RegioStars Awards identify good practices in regional development and highlight original and innovative projects that are attractive and inspiring to other regions.  The annual ceremony is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year. Check out all the 2017 winners in the five categories here.

Interreg North West Europe: Call 6 Now Open

Posted into: EU Programmes

Interreg North West Europe: Call 6 Now Open

The Interreg NWE sixth call for project proposals is now open.  Applicants can complete their proposal online until the deadline on Friday 17th November at 11am, Irish time. 

The programme is looking for initiatives that will deliver results under one of the three priority areas: Innovation, Low Carbon, and Resource & Materials Efficiency.  Proposals must deliver results through transnational cooperation to benefit the NWE area and its citizens.

If you have an idea that could make one of our programme objectives a reality, we would like to hear from you. 

In Ireland, please contact Siobhán Rudden at the Southern Regional Assembly for guidance on your Step 1 application.  For guidance on preparing your application, please consult the programme’s supporting documents.  To upload your application, please visit our online system (eMS).

For more information on Interreg North West Europe, click here.

EMPOWER powers ahead!

Posted into: EU ProgrammesGeneral

EMPOWER powers ahead!

EMPOWER held its second project management meeting in Lorient on the 6th -7th September 2017.  The meeting brought partners together to review progress to date and debate the good practices put forward by each region.  Lively discussion and plenty of interaction took place with inquisitive partners. 

Preparation for EMPOWER’s next stage commenced with discussion around Study trips to “visit” the Good Practices identified in each region.  On day two a technical workshop took place with partners learning more about Innovative Financial Instruments from our German partners; Development Bank of Saxony Anhalt. 

Project partners were also treated to technical visits in the afternoon to:

  • Lanveur School – a photovoltaic solar installation,
  • Kermelo School – energy monitoring systems
  • The future biggest French urban solar roof

The next exciting phase of EMPOWER commences with the Good Practice study visits which will take place in each partner’s region over the next few months. 

To find out more about the EMPOWER project visit:

https://www.interregeurope.eu/empower/

EMPOWER is an interregional cooperation project for improving low-carbon economy policies and is co-funded by ERDF by the Interreg Europe Programme.  

MARIE advances with second Inter-Regional Learning Event in Athens

L-R: Orla Kelly & Siobhan Rudden presenting Irish good practices at the event in Athens.

MARIE advances with second Inter-Regional Learning Event in Athens

MARIE promotes responsible research and innovation (RRI) in key sectors.  By supporting quadruple-helix governance, open innovation and corporate commitment to responsibility, the project helps to create smart, sustainable and inclusive regions.

 

MARIE’s second interregional learning event was held in sunny Athens on 30th – 31st May 17.  The partners from 8 European regions including MARIE’s new project partner; DEV-UP Centre Val de Loire, gathered together to build on progress made since the kick off meeting held in Italy last February. 

In Athens partners shared information on their good practices in an exhibition format, using posters to exchange good practices and with interaction between the “owners” of the good practice and other project partners keen to find out more.  Presentations were made by prof. Eleni Apospori and Christos Tsanos (Athens University of Economics & Business) focusing on the methodology and collection of the good practices, further desk research, Stakeholder consultation and interviews with local enterprises. Open discussion also took place on the gaps in the RRI Inventory and other possible good practices topics to be found.

MARIE’s partners were fortunate to have Local Stakeholders share their experiences of working within the area of social enterprise.  Their inspiring experience triggered discussion on how MARIE can be relevant to them.

MARIE is part-funded by the Interreg Europe Programme, through the European Regional Development Fund and is led by CISE – Special Agency of the Chamber of Commerce of Florì-Cesena, Italy.

MARIE will run until 2021, find out more about MARIE at www.interregeurope.eu/marie/

For further information contact:

Southern Regional Assembly, Waterford, Ireland

Ms. Orla Kelly: okelly@southernassembly.ie / Ms. Siobhan Rudden: srudden@southernassembly.ie

+353 (0) 51 860700, www.southernassembly.ie 

Ireland 2040 – Our Plan

Ireland 2040 – Our Plan

Ireland 2040 Our Plan, Publication of the draft National Planning Framework

The Government published “Ireland 2040 – Our Plan” on Tuesday 26 September 2017,  for its final round of public consultations. Over the next number of weeks, until 3 November, the public will have a chance to review what is essentially the long-term strategic planning framework for our country’s future growth and prosperity. Ireland 2040 – Our Plan will guide national, regional and local planning opportunities throughout our Republic together with investment decisions for at least the next two decades.

 

The Draft National Planning Framework is available as a pdf download here.

To make submissions visit the NPF website

#EUINMYREGION at #Ploughing17

Nicola Finnegan, PEIL 2014-2020, ESF Managing Authority, Sean Kelly, MEP, Derville Brennan, S&E Regional Programme 2014-2020 ERDF Managing Authority and Barry Guckian, BMW Regional Programme 2014-2020 ERDF Managing Authority.

#EUINMYREGION at  #Ploughing17

It felt like the whole world descended on Screggan, Co. Offaly for #Ploughing17 on Tuesday 19th September. It was the first time the Southern Regional Assembly attended the National Ploughing Championships. We were there to promote the achievements of our ERDF co-funded S&E Regional Programme 2014-2020 with colleagues from the ESF co-funded Programme, PEIL 2014-2020 and the BMW Regional Programme 2014-2020. Telling the story of the outcomes of the ESIF programmes is part of an EU wide initiative, #euinmyregion. Attending #Ploughing17 forms part of our contribution to this campaign in 2017. It was a resounding success in terms of presenting us with a receptive audience for our stories. For us it was a very happy occasion to meet so many people and tell them about the programme and how it impacts on the life of the citizens of the region.

We were accommodated by the EC Representation in Ireland in the European Union tent which also housed the stands for among others, the Europe for Citizens, European Consumer Centre Ireland , European Movement Ireland, and the European Parliament Information Office in Ireland. Visitors to the tent had a genuine interest and appetite for information about the European Union. A number of Members of the European Parliament stopped by to meet us and discuss the programme outcomes, among them was Sean Kelly MEP, Mairead McGuinness MEP, Deirdre Clune MEP, Matt Carthy MEP and Liadh Ní Riada MEP.

To say we met thousands was no exaggeration, to say we were met with courtesy and good humour even in the face of the deluge of rain on Wednesday, would be to under play the warmth and friendliness of the rural community attending the ploughing championship. The organisation at the National Ploughing Championship is second to none and the variety of stands and stalls is staggering. All going to plan we’ll definitely be back next year!

Follow the link to the image gallery in the footer of our website to see more photos of our visit to #Ploughing17. We posted some photos to Twitter, Facebook and Instagram too. 

The Assembly is rooted in Waterford City

Cathaoirleach Cllr. John Brennan, John Paul Phelan T.D., Minister of State at the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government, Waterford City and County Mayor, Cllr. Pat Nugent, Mr. Stephen Blair, Director, Southern Regional Assembly.

The Assembly is rooted in Waterford City

John Paul Phelan T.D., Minister of State at the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government with special responsibility for Local Government and Electoral Reform formally opened the new Assembly House in Waterford today, Friday 8th September. The Assembly relocated to 30 O’Connell Street, demonstrating our firm commitment to the city of Waterford. The Assembly located in Waterford in 1999 and when the decision was made to find a permanent home, a city centre presence was deemed critical. City centres thrive and maintain a vibrancy when active business and social communities abound.

Our new headquarters on O’Connell Street, is housed in a building constructed between 1919 and 1922. It was one of the first concrete framed buildings in Waterford city, although dressed with a classical cut limestone façade. Purpose-built for the Provincial bank, it later became the AIB bank, continuing to house a bank until the early 1990’s. It was subsequently converted into the Bank Bar and Restaurant in the mid 2000’s, and traded as such for a couple of years.

Minister Phelan complemented the Cathaoirleach Cllr. John Brennan, the Director, Mr. Stephen Blair and the members of the Southern Regional Assembly on choosing to locate in the centre of Waterford. It is “testament to your commitment to regional development and a symbol of the rise of the provincial Ireland to see a building of this standing in use in the heart of the city” he said. The Minister told assembled guests of the important role the Assemblies have assumed in regional spatial and economic development. He urged the forging of a common purpose that speaks of regional, that in turn benefits the local. Emphasising the role of region in planning for the future, Minister Phelan spoke of his and the Government’s support for strengthening of the regions, which he envisages as a natural outcome of the new National Planning Framework. “As representatives of the Southern region, I urge you to unify in your focus to build and consolidate the strengths of your region and also to lift those parts of the region that lag behind”.

Mr. Stephen Blair addressing the invited guests said “As a regional development and planning agency, we are keenly aware of the trend that occurred over recent decades, the hollowing out of the core of many of our urban centres. Our decision to maintain a city centre presence, is our effort to stem that tide and contribute in some modest way to the vibrancy of this proud and ancient city”.

Regional structures are in place for over two decades in Ireland with the former Regional Authorities established in 1994. Regional structures are still arguably a relatively new phenomenon in the Irish administrative and political landscape. The Assemblies themselves were established in 1999 with recent reform altering the geography and increasing the scope of their responsibilities. With 34 members and a staff complement of 25, the Assembly strives to drive the social, economic and sustainable development of the Southern region. We envision a prosperous region for all citizens.  Cllr. John Brennan, Cathaoirleach, noted “the success we have enjoyed in the management of European programmes and more latterly in laying the bedrock for regional economic and spatial strategies, strengthens the argument for regional structures in Ireland”.

The new premises allow all staff to be housed together under the one roof and our commitment to effective regional development and sustainability is consolidated by this move.

A Story of European Funding in the Southern and Eastern region of Ireland

A Story of European Funding in the Southern and Eastern region of Ireland

Noah the EU project lover visits the House of Waterford Crystal

Posted into: EU ProgrammesGeneral

Noah the EU project lover visits the House of Waterford Crystal

Best Wishes to the Waterford Senior Hurling Team

Best Wishes to the Waterford Senior Hurling Team

Best wishes to the players, management team and supporters of the Waterford senior hurling team in the All-Ireland Hurling Final on Sunday, from the  Members and staff of the Southern Regional Assembly, proud managers of European co-funded regional programmes.

Visit a vessel that maps the seabed and coastline around Wexford and learn about the effects of climate change on our maritime cultural heritage 27th August, Kilmore Quay

Posted into: EU Programmes

Visit a vessel that maps the seabed and coastline around Wexford and learn about the effects of climate change on our maritime cultural heritage 27th August, Kilmore Quay

Find out more about how climate change is effecting our coastal heritage and in particular the coast of county Wexford. Come onboard the RV Keary, a research vessel, and meet the marine archaeologists, surveyors and geologists who analyse the data collected on this vessel. The RV Keary will be in docked in Kilmore Quay on Sunday 27th August when visitors can come onboard to see the vessel, its survey instruments and the results of survey work in Wexford and other parts of the Irish coast. The vessel is open to the public from 10am to 4pm.

The CHERISH project (Climate, Heritage and Environments of Reefs, Islands and Headlands) – ‘Climate Change and Coastal Heritage’ – is an exciting new €5.2 million, 5 year project funded by the European Union’s Ireland-Wales Programme 2014-2020.  The project will support specialist organisations in Wales and Ireland to employ cutting-edge technologies such as seabed mapping, drone aerial survey and laser scanning to analyse to analyse coastline and island archaeology and cultural heritage sites most affected by climate change, coastal erosion, storminess and rising sea levels. Hydrography, geology, archaeology, built and maritime heritage, remote sensing and environmental science will all be employed in furthering this research.

During the summer of 2017 GSI INFOMAR vessels have been conducting inshore surveys along the east coast of Ireland including Wexford. Preliminary data has revealed shipwrecks, sandwaves and geological folding. GSI has also been conducting trials of coastal surveys from drones. This baseline data will be important context to the archaeological work conducted by the Discovery Programme for CHERISH.

The Discovery Programme: Centre for archaeology and Innovation Ireland and the Geological Survey of Ireland will collaborate with The Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales, and Aberystwyth University: Department of Geography and Earth Sciences on this project as well as communities in counties Meath, Dublin, Wexford, Waterford and Kerry.

The INtegrated Mapping FOr the Sustainable Development of Ireland's MArine Resource (INFOMAR) programme is a joint venture between the Geological Survey of Ireland and the Marine Institute. Covering some 125,000 km2 of Irelands most productive and commercially valuable inshore waters, INFOMAR will produce integrated mapping products covering the physical, chemical and biological features of the seabed.

Contact: Linda Shine

Email: LindaShine@DiscoveryProgramme.ie

Phone: 087-67965282

Website: www.discoveryprogramme.ie

CHERISH is co-funded through the European Regional Development Fund through the Ireland Wales Cooperation programme

The Discovery Programme’s mission is to explore Ireland’s past and its cultural heritage by conducting advanced research in Irish archaeology and related disciplines and by disseminating its findings widely to the global community. The Discovery Programme receives its core funding from the Heritage Council and also receives funding through EU funded projects.

Waterford and Cork senior hurling championship

Posted into: The AssemblyGeneral

Waterford and Cork senior hurling championship

Best wishes to the players, managers and supporters of the Waterford and Cork senior hurling teams as they meet in the All-Ireland hurling semi-final on Sunday from the Southern Regional Assembly, proud managers of European co-funded regional programmes.

#euinmyregion video

#euinmyregion video

See this video of the  #euinmyregion  campaign  summing up some of the highlights from the 2017 events https://youtu.be/-3vg-GonGOY via @YouTube

Europe in My Region is a European Union-wide campaign encouraging citizens to discover European projects near them. In 2017, four different initiatives - project openings, a photo contest, a project hunt and a blogging contest - invite the public to visit projects, share images and experiences via social media. Thousands of EU projects open their doors mainly in May, a project hunt was organised from 2 May to 14 June, and a photo contest and a blogging contest runs from 2 May to 28 August.
Discover, play and win trips across Europe!

Project visits and events in the Southern and Eastern region of Ireland will occur throughout 2017. Check back in with us for specific detail as events are announced.

The MARIE project is up and running!

The MARIE project is up and running!

MARIE, an interregional project, was born from a desire among partners to convert debate on Responsible Research & Innovation (RRI) into tools for regional development.  MARIE hit the ground running with a kick off meeting being held in February.  The five-year project was approved for a grant of €1.9m by Interreg Europe Programme late last year.

The consortium of 10 project partners (including the Southern Regional Assembly on the Irish side) are working together to face challenges associated with RRI to improve regional public policy that supports delivery of responsible research and innovation in design, production and distribution of innovation in Smart Specialisation Strategy (S3) Sectors, focusing on 3 types of RRI support action; Quadruple Helix; Open Innovation; Information & Tools for RRI application.

Using interregional activities, communication and stakeholder engagement, partners will develop Action Plans that will result in: improved policy instruments; more and better targeted funding for RRI delivery; increased capacity among innovation actors and consolidated partnerships of quadruple helix innovation chain stakeholders.

MARIE’s first interregional learning event was hosted by the incubator CesenaLab, Italy in February, under the curious eyes of busy start-uppers and with active participation by local stakeholders.

The partners, from 8 European regions and coordinated by CISE, gathered together to learn more about the concept of Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI). They were supported in this by a group of local and regional stakeholders with experience in innovation, sustainability and social & environmental responsibility.

The second interregional learning event, hosted by the Greek partners in sunny Athens in May proved very productive.  RRI good practises identified by each partner were explored, as was the method of gathering data relating to mapping RRI in each partner region.  Local and regional stakeholders working in the areas of innovation and social entrepreneurship also shared their knowledge and experience with participants.  

MARIE is part-funded by the Interreg Europe Programme, through the European Regional Development Fund and is led by CISE – Special Agency of the Chamber of Commerce of Florì-Cesena, Italy.

MARIE will run until 2021, find out more about MARIE at www.interregeurope.eu/marie/

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Southern Regional Assembly, Waterford, Ireland

Ms. Orla Kelly, okelly@southernassembly.ie, +353 (0) 51 860700, www.southernassembly.ie 

Cllr John Brennan elected as Cathaoirleach of the Southern Regional Assembly

Posted into: The AssemblyGeneral

L to R: Outgoing Cathaoirleach Cllr. Mattie Ryan with newly elected Cathaoirleach Cllr. John Brennan receiving the Chain of Office and Mr. Stephen Blair, Director of the Southern Regional Assembly.

Cllr John Brennan elected as Cathaoirleach of the Southern Regional Assembly

At the AGM of the Southern Regional Assemby, held 14th July 2017, Cllr. John Brennan was elected Cathaoirleach replacing outgoing Cathaoirleach Cllr. Mattie Ryan.  Cllr. John Brennan was first elected to the Southern Regional Assembly in 2014. He was a member of the South-East Regional Authority from 2004.  A member of the Fine Gael party, Cllr Brennan represents Kilkenny County Council on the Assembly.  Cllr. Brennan, a full-time public representative, has been a member of Kilkenny County Council since 1989, representing the Castlecomer electoral district.  

Cllr. Brennan is heavily involved in his local community groups including Castlecomer Town Development Association, the Clauneen Hurling Club, the Castlecomer Enterprise Group of which he is Vice Chair and PRO, and the Colreg Christian Housing Association.

Cllr Brennan said it "was an honour to be elected Cathaoirleach of the Southern Regional Assembly and he would work to the best of his abilities on the many issues facing the region with the full co-operation of his colleagues".

Are Irish people aware of EU investments?

Posted into: EU ProgrammesGeneral

Are Irish people aware of EU investments?

Awareness and perceived impact of Regional EU investments

Ireland is in line with the other member states when it comes to our awareness of the financial support that Europe provides to regions and cities. Across the Union, 35% of people have heard of EU co-financed projects that improve the area they live in.

However, we are more likely to have heard about EU policies, programmes and projects via billboards and national newspapers than our EU counterparts.

Respondents were then asked, on taking into consideration all the projects they have heard about; do they view the support has had a positive or negative impact on the development of their city or region. Respondents in Ireland gave a resounding positive response to this question, with 97% viewing it as a positive impact compared to the 78% of their EU counterparts and only 1% viewing it as having a negative impact. 

Again, when asked if their daily lives benefited from an European funded project, Irish respondents held a more positive view (41%) than those from other Member States (24%).

This is good news for EU funded programmes in Ireland.

More details emerging from the survey are available on the Commission’s website

Interreg NWE Project Ideas in The Hague

Posted into: EU ProgrammesGeneral

Interreg NWE Project Ideas in The Hague

North West Europe’s next Project Ideas Lab is taking place in The Hague (The Netherlands) on 4 October 2017.

This event will help you get ready for the upcoming  Interreg North West Europe call for project proposals (open from 16 October to 17 November 2017) and will be an opportunity to:

  •          Discover what to do to apply for funds
  •          Learn more about our main themes: innovation, social innovation, low carbon,   transport and resource and materials efficiency
  •          Find out what a successful project application looks like
  •          Share your project idea and find new partners
  •          Develop your project idea further

 

Participation is free, but registration is compulsory, so register as soon as possible to secure your place!

 

When: Wednesday, 4 October 2017 from 9am to 5pm

Where: World Forum, Churchillplein 10, 2517 JW The Hague

Registration: Go here to register online and download the draft agenda (to open the registration form, you need to click on "Check out" first). The deadline for registration is 19 September.

EU co-funded projects case studies

Posted into: EU Programmes

EU co-funded projects case studies

The European Regional Development Fund co-finances investments into the regions with Governments across the European Union and supports activities in the regions contributing to a balanced level of development. The Southern Regional Assembly continues to manage regional programmes that are funded by the Irish exchequer, the EU. local Authority co-funds investment in the urban regneration schemes in the region.

Some case studies of projects funded under the programme that was closed this Spring, are featured here.

Pharmaceutical and Molecular Biotechnology Research Centre (PMBRC) Case Ctudy

National Broadband Scheme Case Study

Goatsbridge Trout Farm Case Study

Energy for Business Scheme Case Study

Christ Church and St Luke's Church - ERDF Gateways Grant Scheme project Case Study

Empowering Approach to Energy Efficiency

Posted into: EU ProgrammesGeneral

The EMPOWER project has officially started its activity

Empowering Approach to Energy Efficiency

June 2017

EMPOWER, an interregional project aiming to reduce carbon output by dynamically monitoring energy efficiency in buildings, hit the ground running since it kicked off in January.  The five-year, 9-partners project was approved for a grant of € 1.90 M by the Interreg Europe Programme late last year

The partnerships of 9 European regions are working together to share experience, solutions, and good practice to develop and deliver better public policy to reduce carbon emissions and innovative use of financial instruments. Joint activities, such as peer review, good practices identification and study visits will feed into the development of 9 Regional Action Plans aimed at enhancing their low carbon policy instruments.

The partners have been busy with the first set of activities, including a kick off meeting in Slovenia in January 2017 and a Peer Review event in Venice in March 2017. The Peer Review event brought together key stakeholders from the partner regions to get ideas on how to improve regional policies and review the planned improvements to the targeted policies.

Running until 2021, the project will benefit building users, decision-makers, SMEs in the energy sector, and investors by applying cost-effective energy monitoring to reduce energy demand, using new technology, and improving how various decision-makers work together on low carbon policy.

EMPOWER is part-funded by the Interreg Europe Programme through the European Regional Development Fund, and led by the Energy Agency of Podravje (Energap) in Slovenia. 

More about the EMPOWER project you can read here www.interregeurope.eu/empower

 FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, CONTACT:

  Southern Regional Assembly, Waterford, Ireland

  Ms. Siobhán Rudden, srudden@southernassembly.ie

  Energy Agency of Podravje, Maribor, Slovenia

  Dr. Vlasta Krmelj, vlasta.krmelj@energap.si

EMPOWER Newsletter 1 June 2017

STRONG REGIONAL INVESTMENT

Cllr Mattie Ryan, who was elected Cathaoirleach of the Southern Regional Assembly (SRA) in March 2017, pictured with SRA Director Stephen Blair, and Cllr. Michael O’Shea.

 STRONG REGIONAL INVESTMENT

STRONG REGIONAL INVESTMENT

More than 700 projects have been approved to date, under the Southern and Eastern Regional Programme, which is managed by the Southern Regional Assembly, through a combination of European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), National Exchequer and local authority funds, to deliver projects in the region over the 2014-2020 period.

The Southern Regional Assembly (SRA) is also a programme partner for the Ireland Wales Programme (2014-2020) and has an active role in a range of European Territorial Co-operation Programmes. ‘No man is an island’ rings true down the centuries and is a lyrical expression of the acknowledged interdependency of society. It reminds us of our human, geographic, and cultural connectedness. It prefigures our want and desire to plan for our future. A future that strives for the betterment of the quality of life for all citizens. It is through this constant quest to improve and narrow disparities, that we as a region can realise our individual and collective potential.

The Department of Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government is in the process of devising the National Planning Framework (NPF). This process brings into sharp focus the gravity of the choices we must now make. Choices that will impact on generations to come. The NPF is an ambitious project, it needs to be, to keep pace with the accelerated rate of technological, social and economic change. The Assembly recognises there are significant challenges facing our country that require decisive leadership and a strong and effective set of national and regional strategies. To secure a sustainable future it is imperative we avoid a piecemeal approach to strategy formulation. Critically, spatial planning must be informed by economic and social needs. The overarching principle of the protection of the environment combined with an impetus to improve social equality, will serve to copper-fasten and safeguard our future. The changing world we live in brings with it challenges and opportunities. The Southern region, will experience population growth and a proportionately older population over the period of the plan.

 

HARNESSING ASSETS

While predominantly rural, the region includes three of the country’s four regional cities and a strong settlement pattern of towns and villages. Rich agricultural land, freshwater rivers and streams, a diverse coastline forms part of our natural resources. We want to harness this wealth of assets, to rise to the challenges of tomorrow and to grow in a managed and sustainable manner. We will strive to do this by working with Government and its agencies to create sustainable development in the region, and by drawing together the components to inspire and attract people to live, work and participate in our vibrant region. Irish people traditionally identify with parish and county. Various studies show that identity with place of living is still very strong in Ireland. It is enmeshed with a sense of belonging to the place where people grew up, the wider county and the nation. Notwithstanding the changing face of Ireland, this consciousness and sense of belonging must inform and shape the NPF. Connectedness is immeasurably important to any community. It plays a part in safeguarding the health and well-being of citizens. Embeddedness is a difficult variable to quantify but one the Assembly contends is worthy of protection in plan making for the future.

The Southern Regional Assembly has 33 members, 27 of whom are nominated from the constituent local authorities and six due to their membership of the Committee of the Regions (CoR). The councillors are supported by staff, mostly based at the Assembly HQ in Waterford City.

It is worthwhile to pause and reflect what exactly place and belonging means in the Irish context. This needs to be done not in a bid to stall progress but to better understand the cultural sensitivities at play.

Place making or place-shaping is about improving the economic competitiveness, physical infrastructure and social fabric of a city, region or country, to increase its appeal as a place to live, work, study, invest in, trade with and visit.

REGIONAL VIBRANCY

No longer a homogenous society, isolated of the coast of continental Europe, we are globally connected, enriched with a diverse, young and educated population. We live in exciting and fast moving times. Our unique proposition as a nation, as a region, is firmly vested in our people and in our collective vision and values.

We are ready to play our part in contributing to the achievement of the greater national goals, among those being the transition to a low-carbon economy and the provision of high speed broadband for all unserved parts of the region.

Ubiquitous high-speed broadband is a pre-condition for regional competitiveness, key to securing a stronger economy, a socially enriched and environmentally protected region. Funding for initiatives in these key areas will be delivered under the Southern and Eastern Regional Programme.

Our role as European programme manager complements and uniquely positions us to guide and foster the potential of our region. Progress achieved to date by the urban centre development projects is proof of an integrated approach to planning.

The NPF is poised to benefit both the state and its regions, it doesn’t need to threaten or undermine the aspirations of any part of the country, urban or rural. Rather it can serve to unlock the latent potential of less-developed areas while increasing the competitiveness of the more developed areas.

Quality of life for all and safeguarding for future generations is at the heart of its goal.

FACTFILE: THE SOUTHERN REGION

  • Three out of four Regional Cities.
  • Population Growth of almost 3% over the last five years.
  • Many Strong Rural Areas supported by a Network of Towns and Villages.
  • Strong Job Growth with 62,600 new jobs created in the last five years.
  • Two Universities and Five Institutes of Technology with a combined full-time student population of approximately 55,000 with an additional 12,000 part-time students.
  • The only Two State Airports outside of Dublin as well as Two Regional Airports.
  • All Tier 1 and Tier 2 Ports of National Significance outside of Dublin.
  • Modern and Diverse Industrial Base with established cluster and specialisms in high value sectors such as pharmaceuticals, life sciences, aviation, precision engineering, information technology, food and beverages.
  • Good quality farm land with High Agricultural Yields and strong food processing capabilities.
  • Net exporter of Clean Renewable Energy with significant potential for further growth
  • An extensive coastline with significant Marine Resource potential.

FUNCTIONS OF SOUTHERN REGIONAL ASSEMBLY

The Southern Regional Assembly, which meets on the second Friday of every month at its headquarters in Waterford, undertakes to:

  • Manage and monitor EU programmes of Assistance.
  • Co-ordinate, promote and support strategic planning and sustainable development of the region.
  • Promote effective local government and public services in the region, in conjunction with the National Oversight   and Audit Commission.
  • Prepare and oversee the implementation of Regional Spatial & Economic Strategies.

Atlantic Stakeholder Platform Conference, November 2017, Glasgow & Call for workshops, Atlantic Project Awards

Posted into: EU Programmes

Atlantic Stakeholder Platform Conference, November 2017, Glasgow & Call for workshops, Atlantic Project Awards

The 2017 Atlantic Stakeholder Platform Conference will take place in Glasgow on the 8th November. The conference will focus on topics related to Priority 4 of the Atlantic Action of Creating a Socially inclusive and sustainable model of regional development.  Prominence will also be given to the international dimension of the Atlantic Strategy embodied in the 2013 Galway Statement on Atlantic Ocean Cooperation and its potential support to the Blue Economy.

Free pre-registration for the Conference is now available at the following link:

http://www.atlanticstrategy.eu/en/news-and-events/news/4th-atlantic-stakeholder-platform-conference-8-november-2017-glasgow-scotland/participants-registration-form

The Call for Workshops is ongoing and the Atlantic stakeholder community are invited to submit, before 16 June 2017, their proposals on trends and themes in the areas of:

  • Fostering better knowledge of social challenges in the Atlantic Area; and
  • Preserving and promoting the Atlantic’s cultural heritage through diversification

Proposals can be submitted at the following link:

http://www.atlanticstrategy.eu/en/news-and-events/news/4th-atlantic-stakeholder-platform-conference-8-november-2017-glasgow-scotland/call-for-workshops-registration

The call for submissions for the 2nd Atlantic Projects Awards is also open applications with a deadline of 16 June 2017. Applications should demonstrate excellence in the areas of

  • Entrepreneurship and Innovation
  • Atlantic Marine and coastal environment
  • Accessibility and connectivity
  • Sustainability
  • Cooperation in the Atlantic Area.

Applications can be submitted online at the following link:

http://www.atlanticstrategy.eu/en/news-and-events/events/2nd-atlantic-project-awards-2017-form

An INFORMING network

Posted into: EU ProgrammesGeneral

Ms. Monica Doyle, EU Structural and Investment Funds Programmes, Department of Public Expenditure and Reform, Ms. Nicola Finnegan, ESF Managing Authority, Department of Education and Skills and Ms. Derville Brennan, Research and Communications Officer, Southern Regional Assembly.

An INFORMING network

A meeting of the INFORM and INIO networks took place in 30 May - 1 June 2017 in Pamhagen, Austria. The meeting brought together cohesion policy communicators from across the EU in a quest to share best practise, to plan new actions and campaigns. The forum offers an opportunity to learn or improve upon methods and means of telling the good news story of EU investments in projects at a regional and local level.

Cathaoirleach Elected

Cathaoirleach Elected

Cllr Thomas McEllistrim Fianna Fail, Kerry Co. Co. and Member of the Southern Regional Assembly, was elected cathaoirleach of the South-West Strategic Planning Area (SPA) Committee on Wednesday 17th May. The SPA is one of 3 SPA committees engaged in the process of developing of a Regional Spatial and Economic Strategy for the Southern Region. Cllr. McEllistrim will serve as cathaoirleach for the SPA for a year. He succeeds Cllr. Gerard Murphy, who was the inaugural cathaoirleach of the South-West SPA and who served from April 2016 to May 2017. 

Open Day event at the Abbey Creative Quarter project site on Saturday 20th May #euinmyregion

L to R: Rita McGarvey, Southern Regional Assembly, Cllr. John Brennan, KilKenny Co. Co. and Southern Regional Assembly and an Open Days visitor.

Open Day event at the Abbey Creative Quarter project site on Saturday 20th May #euinmyregion

Kilkenny County Council held a highly successful Open Day event at the Abbey Creative Quarter project site on Saturday 20th May. The day was a mix of nostalgia and a sharing of the next steps for the development of the site.  This was an #euinmyRegion event.

The people of Kilkenny came out in their droves with 2,500 people attending all told. Many hundreds stopped by our stand to hear about the work of the Assembly and the investment under the European co-funded Southern and Eastern Regional Programme.

The day was filled with lots of choice and visitors had a chance to:

• Visit St Francis Abbey and see the City Walls including Evans Turrett (National Monuments)

• View the plans for the former Mayfair Ballroom, The Brewhouse and The Riverside Garden.

• Review the Masterplan for the former Smithwick’s Brewery site.

There was lively chat and entertainment with:

• KCLR Saturday Show Presenter Edward Hayden Outside Broadcast – Interview with Cllr. John Brennan and Derville Brennan, Southern Regional Assembly.

• The Aces Showband with special guests from ‘The Black Aces’ & The Uptown Band.

• Community Radio Kilkenny City - Interviews sharing Mayfair Memories and the recollections of the former Smithwick’s workers and Derville Brennan, talking about the EU programmes and the work of the Southern Regional Assembly.

The Abbey Creative Quarter Project is part funded by the ERDF

http://eufunds.gov.ie/objectives/sustainable-urban-development/

ABBEY CREATIVE QUARTER SITE OPEN DAY

ABBEY CREATIVE QUARTER SITE OPEN DAY

ABBEY CREATIVE QUARTER SITE OPEN DAY NOSTALGIA & NEXT STEPS

SATURDAY 20th MAY - 10.30am- 4.30pm| NO BOOKING NECESSARY

ALL ARE WELCOME

A #euinmyRegion event 

COME ALONG AND SEE THE SITE

• Visit St Francis Abbey and see the City Walls including Evans Turrett (National Monuments)

• View the plans for the former Mayfair Ballroom, The Brewhouse and The Riverside Garden.

• Review the Masterplan for the former Smithwick’s Brewery site.

THERE WILL BE LIVELY CHAT & ENTERTAINMENT WITH:

• KCLR Saturday Show Presenter Edward Hayden Outside Broadcast.

• The Aces Showband with special guests from ‘The Black Aces’ & The Uptown Band.

• Community Radio Kilkenny City - Interviews sharing Mayfair Memories and former Smithwick’s workers

recollections.

SHARE YOUR MEMORIES

Kilkenny County Council  need your help to gather any memorabilia from The Mayfair Ballroom & Smithwick’s Brewery. If you have any posters, photos, adverts, tickets etc. they would love to see them.

e-mail: brewerysiteopenday@kilkennycoco.ie or

phone / text: Marian Flannery, 087 6863 243

The Abbey Creative Quarter Project is part funded by the ERDF

http://eufunds.gov.ie/objectives/sustainable-urban-development/

Minister Donohoe launches new website to promote the benefit to Ireland of EU funding

Posted into: EU ProgrammesGeneral

Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform, Paschal Donohoe, T.D., at the launch with officials from the Southern Regional Assembly and some of the Government Departments involved. Image Credit: Claire Godkin, Department of Public Expenditure and Reform

Minister Donohoe launches new website to promote the benefit to Ireland of EU funding

The Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform, Paschal Donohoe T.D., today launched a new website www.eufunds.gov.ie to publicise the positive impact of European Structural and Investment Funds in Ireland.

Over the 2014-2020 programming period, EU Structural and Investment funds will be used, together with Irish Government and Local Authority funding, to invest €6.2 billion in Ireland. The investment includes initiatives in education, research and job creation to help create a sustainable and healthy economy across the whole of the country. The funds are also spent on protecting our environment, and on supporting rural and coastal communities.

Speaking at the launch, Minister Donohoe commented: “If we reflect on the lessons learnt from major political events in Europe in the past year, a key learning point for all of us here today is that we need to rise to the challenge of communicating more effectively about the very positive impact which EU membership has on all our lives, in every corner of Ireland. It is perhaps a little ironic, in an age of social media and instant messaging, that this very important message is in danger of getting lost.”

The website includes high level information on funding and expenditure under each of the Operational Programmes. However, it also contains a number of very personal stories such as participants on Garda Youth Diversion Projects, or family business start-ups with assistance from Local Enterprise Boards. The website also gives examples of projects countrywide, such as the rollout of broadband, research programmes underway in Universities, and programmes to assist farming and fishing communities. The website is well illustrated with high quality photographic images and designed with the citizen in mind. It is easy to navigate with quick links for individuals and organisations who would like to research how to apply for EU funding.

The launch was attended by a number of organisations involved in the implementation of EU Programmes together with EU officials including the Head of Information and Communications in the European Commission Representation in Ireland.

Minister Donohoe spoke about Brexit at the launch. He commented that: “Ireland has been a proud member of the European Union since 1972” and he reminded the audience that EU membership had created valuable opportunities for Irish business, including unhindered access to a market of nearly 500 million people. Acknowledging the particular challenges which Ireland will face after Brexit, the Minister stated: “Given our close historical and economic ties with Britain, and as the only Member State with a physical border, Brexit represents a more significant challenge for Ireland than any other EU Member State. This has been clearly acknowledged in the UK’s formal Article 50 letter and in the EUs draft guidelines for Brexit negotiations.”

The National Website for the European Structural and Investment Funds is available on www.eufunds.gov.ie

ENDS

Notes to Editors:

The EU Policy Unit in the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform (DPER) co-ordinates the management of the European Structural and Investment (ESI) Funds in Ireland and provides a co-ordination and support service to other Government Departments and the Regional Managing Authorities implementing national and regional Programmes which are co-financed by the Irish Government and the ESI Funds. These Programmes are implemented in seven-year programming periods. The current Programmes cover the seven-year programming period from 2014 to 2020 inclusive.

European Structural and Investment (ESI) Funds 2014-2020

The main policy aim of the ESI Funds is to support economic development across all EU countries in line with the objectives of the Europe 2020 strategy. The main ESIF for which Ireland is eligible are:

  • the European Social Fund (ESF);
  • the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF);
  • the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD);
  • European Maritime & Fisheries Fund (EMFF).

In addition to the ESIF, the Fund for European Aid for the most Deprived (FEAD) is designed to help the most deprived people by providing support to help people out of poverty.

Overall there will be €6.2 billion of expenditure in the 2014-2020 round of funds, which is co-financed by the EU and by the Irish Taxpayer. The funding will be used as follows:

  • Providing training places for unemployed people and job-seekers, with particular programmes for younger unemployed people;
  • Assisting disadvantaged, and disabled students to access University;
  • Supporting Adult Literacy programmes;
  • Assisting young people in difficulty, through Garda Youth Diversion Projects;
  • Assisting vulnerable members of Irish society by supporting the efforts of Irish food aid charities;
  • Supporting fishing communities around the country, assisting in job creation and helping these communities to diversify their economies;
  • Providing high speed broadband to over 300,000 homes across Ireland;
  • Supporting microenterprises in every county of Ireland to create over 20,500 new jobs;
  • Funding Research Programmes which underpin collaborative research between our Universities and Multinationals, creating future clusters of excellence;
  • Protecting the environment and natural habitat;
  • Investing both in physical assets and in knowledge transfer;
  • Promoting animal welfare and food traceability.

Interreg North West Europe Approvals

Posted into: EU Programmes

Interreg North West Europe Approvals

The Interreg NWE Monitoring Committee approved seven more projects at its meeting in Paris in early March.  Ten Irish organisations from a variety of sectors are participating in three of the approvals.

The newly approved projects will cover a variety of issues which are common to the NWE area under the three programme priorities of Innovation, Low Carbon, and Resource Efficiency. 

For Ireland, these will cover the health sector, renewable energy for communities and the use of straw in buildings as insulant.  More details will be announced once contracts are finalised.

This brings the number of projects approved to 24, with approximately 22% of the programme budget for projects committed to date.  Full details of approved projects can be viewed here.

There is still plenty of opportunity for potential applicants to secure funding - Call 5 will close on 24th May, and Call 6 will be launched later this year.

For further information on Interreg NWE in Ireland, contact:

Siobhán Rudden, National Contact Point

Email: srudden@southernassembly.ie

Tel: +353 51 860700

€1.4 million Irish Sea Portal Project launched

Posted into: EU Programmes

€1.4 million Irish Sea Portal Project launched

The Irish Sea Portal Project was lauched on Monday 20th March 2017 by BIM, Ireland’s seafood development agency and the Centre for Applied Marine Sciences at Bangor University, Wales. This €1.4 million pilot project is to create a portal that will bring together scientific research in the Irish Sea from both Ireland and Wales.  This collaborative project has been funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) through the Wales-Ireland Cooperation and will focus on information of particular relevance to the mussel producing sector in the pilot phase.  It is hoped that the successful trialling of the pilot project will pave the way for the sharing of valuable data across the board in relation to the Irish Sea. 

The economic benefit of aquaculture and fisheries in the Irish Sea is very important to both the Irish and Welsh economies, valued at €254 million in total (€58 million Welsh and €196 million Irish). 

Announcing the launch of the project at a mussel workshop in Wexford, Shelagh Malham, from the Centre for Applied Marine Sciences at Bangor University, Wales  said, “Working with our Irish counterparts gives us the opportunity to manage common valuable resources between our shores, and to improve our understanding of the processes involved.”

Also speaking at the launch of the project, Ben Dallaghan, GIS Office, BIM said, ‘Seed mussel and other shellfish in the Irish Sea are a shared resource and in order to manage them effectively research effort should be conducted using geographic units relevant to the species in question and not country borders. Any data and scientific conclusions leading to a better understanding of seed settlement patterns would enormously benefit the shellfish industries in both Ireland and Wales and BIM are delighted to collaborate with Bangor University on this project’.

The Pilot will provide industry with new and more complete data sets to considerably add value to their business.   

Launch of EU funded project CHERISH Thursday 23rd March 2017

Posted into: EU Programmes

Launch of EU funded project CHERISH Thursday 23rd March 2017

The CHERISH project, funded through the Ireland-Wales Co-Operation Programme 2014-2020, will be officially launched on Thursday 23rd March by the Geological Survey of Ireland and the Discovery Programme: Centre for Archaeology and Innovation Ireland.  

The 5 year project which began on January1st 2017 will receive more than €4m of EU funds through the Ireland Wales Co-operation Programme 2014-2020, Priority Axis 2 – Adaptation of the Irish Sea and Coastal Communities to Climate Change.

CHERISH (Climate, Heritage and Environments of Reefs, Islands and Headlands) – ‘Climate Change and Coastal Heritage’ – will support specialist organisations in Wales and Ireland to employ cutting-edge technologies to analyse coastal and island archaeology and maritime heritage sites most affected by climate change, coastal erosion, storminess and rising sea levels.  The key objective of CHERISH is to increase knowledge and understanding of the impacts (past, present and near-future) of climate change, increased storminess and extreme weather events on the cultural heritage of reefs, islands and headlands of the Welsh and Irish regional seas. The project will target data and management knowledge gaps, employing innovative techniques to discover, assess, map and monitor heritage assets on land and beneath the sea, widely disseminating the results and developing best practice for future climate change adaptation.

Among some of the tourism and heritage sites under study in Ireland are the Saltee Islands (Wexford), Glascarrig Motte (Co. Wexford), Skellig Michael (Co. Kerry) and the  Skerries Islands (Co. Dublin).

Irish Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform, Paschal Donohoe, T.D. said:

“This project is an excellent example of how new technologies can be used to address emerging issues such as climate change and its impact on our shared heritage and marine environment. It also underscores the importance of cross-border cooperation and support from the European Union for such cooperation.”

For more detailed information on the project please visit the Ireland-Wales website  

£3.4m Welsh and Irish coastal erosion study begins.

Southern Regional Assembly elects Cathaoirleach for remaining 2017 term.

Posted into: The AssemblyGeneral

Mr. Stephen Blair, Director of the Southern Regional Assembly pictured with the newly elected Cathaoirleach, Cllr. Mattie Ryan receiving the Chain of Office from the previous Cathaoirleach, Cllr. Michael O’Shea.

Southern Regional Assembly elects Cathaoirleach for remaining 2017 term.

Cllr. Mattie Ryan was first elected to the Southern Regional Assembly in 1999 having previously been a member of the Mid-West Regional Authority since 1994.  As a member of the Fianna Fáil party, Cllr. Ryan represents Tipperary County Council on the Assembly.  Cllr. Ryan has been a member of Tipperary County Council since 1991, representing the Nenagh electoral district. 

Cllr. Ryan is a retired farmer and full-time public representative.  He is married to Carmel and they have two daughters and has one son. 

Cllr. Ryan has a particular interest in rural development, rural and village sewerage schemes and working with people with disabilities and is committed to further developing and promoting these areas as part of his work at regional level.   He is also a member of the Rural Water Monitoring Committee.

Cllr. Ryan looks forward to serving as Cathaoirleach of the Southern Regional Assembly for the remaining term to July 2017.

For information on this press release please contact:

Sharon Murray, Programme Executive - Corporate Affairs, Southern Regional Assembly

Tel: 051-860700 / Mobile: 087-6460938 or email: smurray@southernassembly.ie

Note to Editor:

The Southern Regional Assembly, established on 1st January 2015, is one of three Assemblies in the Republic of Ireland following on from the dissolution of the BMW and Southern & Eastern Regional Assemblies.  The former 8 regional authorities and 2 regional assemblies were consolidated under the Government’s regional reform process under the Local Government Reform Act 2014 to form the Southern, the Northern and Western and the Eastern and Midland regions.

Celebrating International Women’s Day 2017

Posted into: The AssemblyGeneral

Celebrating International Women’s Day 2017

Article placed in the Waterford News & Star for International Womens Day 08th March 2017

Established in January 2015, the Southern Regional Assembly (SRA) is one of three assemblies in Ireland. The region includes all of the counties in Munster plus the south-east counties of Carlow, Kilkenny and Wexford. The Assembly has many responsibilities including the management of European co-funded programmes and economic and spatial planning for the region. We act as the national contact point for a number of EU-funded transnational programmes.

Essentially, our role in relation to European programmes, is to make sure the moneys given in grant aid to the projects or the small businesses are spent in accordance with the rules laid down by the European Commission for the programme.

Among our responsibilities is the formulation of the Regional Spatial and Economic Strategies (RSES). This is a new responsibility; it will be the first time that such strategies are to be devised at a regional level in Ireland. The members of the Assembly will play a key role in the development of the strategy for the Southern region.

A part of our role is to promote effectiveness in local government and public services in the region to aid transparency between plans, policies and proposals of these organisations.

The Assembly has a predominantly female staff, leading and supporting across these key roles. For detail on the individual roles please check out the staff section on our website www.southernassembly.ie.

In recognition of the energy, the dedication and the creativity brought to the workplace, on International Women’s Day, we are acknowledging the valuable role each of these 16 women play in conducting the business of the Assembly:

Breda Curran; Breda White; Caitriona Phelan; Derville Brennan; Emma Doran; Eve Hayden; Karen Coughlan; Marie Harnett; Edel Hunt; Oonagh Messette; Orla Kelly; Rita McGarvey; Sharon Murray; Sonja Maurus; Siobhán Rudden; Yvonne Cooney.

On this day we would like to acknowledge the female members of the Assembly too, Cllr. Deirdre Forde, Cork County Council; Cllr. Deirdre O’Brien, Cork County Council; Cllr. Dianne Nolan, Kerry County Council and Cllr. Mary Shields, Cork City Council.

To find out more about the SRA and its work contact the office at Assembly House, 30 O’Connell Street, on (051) 860700 or follow us on Facebook and Twitter (@Southernassembl). 

Notification of Next Southern Regional Assembly Meeting 10/03/2017

Posted into: The Assembly

Notification of Next Southern Regional Assembly Meeting 10/03/2017

The Agenda for the Southern Regional Assembly meeting scheduled for the 10th March 2017 at 12:00 is as follows:

  1. Election of Cathaoirleach of the Assembly who will hold office until the Annual Meeting on 14th July 2017
  2. Adoption of Minutes of Meeting held on 10th February (attached)
  3. Matters arising
  4. National Planning Framework Launch – update
  5. AIR Training Event for Assembly Members – 26th May, 2017
  6. Any other business
  7. Confirm date for next meeting

     Break for Lunch

  1. Members Workshop (from 2pm – 4pm) on Assembly Submission to Department on NPF Consultation Paper

Are Irish people up to speed on EU Funds?

L to R: Ms Claire O'Rourke, Amárach Research; Cllr. Damien Geoghegan, Southern Regional Assembly; Mr. Tim Hayes, EC Representation in Ireland; Mr. Rob Mooney, Amárach Research; Cllr. Séamus Coyle, Leas-Cathaoirleach, Northern and Western Regional Assembly.

Are Irish people up to speed on EU Funds?

A survey commissioned by the Northern and Western Regional Assembly (NWRA) and the Southern Regional Assembly (SRA) shows they are aware of EU funded programmes. The Assemblies both manage European funded regional programmes and are interested to know the level of awareness of the funds in their region. On our behalf, Amárach Research, undertook a nationally representative face-to-face public awareness and attitudes survey of 1,200 adults in 2016.


Among a range of matters the study was most interested to measure the public's awareness and knowledge of Ireland’s European co-funded Programmes and the projects assisted.
Nearly 2/3 or 64% of respondents were aware of programmes co-funded by Europe. They felt that European programmes were of benefit to themselves as individuals, their local town/area, as well as to the people of Ireland in general.


Interestingly at a regional level there was no discernible difference in awareness however differences were seen within the regions. Those in the Border region had the highest levels of awareness of the programmes (70%). A much lower proportion of awareness was found among respondents in the Mid-East Region (53%).

When participants were asked about the importance of specific areas for investment, employment was a high priority, along with water quality, school facilities, training initiatives, business support, social inclusion, childcare, public transport and energy efficiency.

The survey report was launched at the Partnership Agreement Monitoring Committee on Monday 12th December in the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform (DPER), Dublin.

Public Attitudes and Awareness Survey report available for download here.


Media contacts: Derville Brennan, Programme Executive, Research and Communications, Southern Regional Assembly m. + 353 87 7793755; e. dbrennan@southernassembly.ie
 

What do we do?

  • Manage and monitor EU programmes of Assistance
  • Co-ordinate, promote and support strategic planning and sustainable development of the region
  • Promote effective local government and public services in the region, in conjunction with the National Oversight and Audit Commission
  • Prepare and oversee the implementation of Regional Spatial & Economic Strategies (RSES)

EU LIFE Programme 2014-2020 Information Day – Friday 17th February 2017

Posted into: EU Programmes

EU LIFE Programme 2014-2020 Information Day – Friday 17th February 2017

EU LIFE Programme 2014-2020


Information Day – Friday 17th February 2017

Location:  Chartered Accountants House, 47 – 49 Pearse St, Dublin 2, D02 YN40 Ireland.
Time: 10:00 am - 1:00 pm (registration at 9:30am).


Of interest to potential project applicants from Ireland and Northern Ireland.


Event Summary
The EU LIFE Programme provides funding opportunities for the support of Environment, Nature Conservation and climate action projects throughout the EU with a budget of €3.4 billion for 2014-2020.  Awards are typically in the range of one to five million euro for projects with a duration of three to five years.  Maximum EU co-financing rates of 60/75% apply depending on the project topic.
The European Commission’s 2017 call for applications is due to open in mid-May, and is expected to reflect an increased emphasis on transnational projects.


The Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment, as National Contact Point in Ireland, invites you to this Information day, as a means of promoting the LIFE programme and assisting potential applicants in Ireland and Northern Ireland.


Focus on the day will include:
• providing potential applicants with the opportunity to hear about a successful Irish project and avail of that project’s team’s experience of the LIFE programme;
• a Workshop “Play your LIFE cards right” – interactive session focused on eligibility/LIFE Programme priorities – facilitated by JNCC (UK LIFE National Contact Point); and
• presentations on practical issues such as tips on preparing and writing a LIFE Programme application.


Registration
Places are limited and priority will be given to groups with definite plans to submit a LIFE Programme application this year or in subsequent calls.
If you are interested in attending, please let us know by email at LIFE@dccae.gov.ie

Please see further information here.

Four months after adoption: the Urban Agenda for the EU is moving fast forward

Posted into: The Assembly

Four months after adoption: the Urban Agenda for the EU is moving fast forward

The European Commission launches three new initiatives to help push forward the Urban Agenda for the EU by facilitating more coordination, coherence and synergies between urban policies and data.
The online "One-stop shop" portal on EU urban policies responds to the needs expressed by cities in the context of the Urban Agenda to have complete, reliable and updated information in a simple and accessible form on the key EU urban policies and initiatives having an impact on cities. The portal centralises all information on the priority themes of the Urban Agenda for the EU, such as on air quality, climate adaptation, energy transition and urban mobility.

The Commission State of European Cities Report issued together with UN-Habitat supports the Urban Agenda by assessing the performance of European cities with regards to the priority themes: jobs and skills, poverty, climate-resilient cities or low-carbon economy. The analysis will enable the exchanges and learning between mayors by comparing the performance of their cities, and by providing concrete project examples.

The Urban Data Platform, which will be linked to the "one-stop shop", provides a single access point to common indicators on the status and trends of more than 600 urban areas in Europe. This will facilitate urban practitioners to compare data, benchmark, and monitor, which is one of the key aims of the Urban Agenda.

This comes at the right timing, as the Urban Agenda for the EU is now moving fast forward some months after the adoption of the Amsterdam Pact by the Council. At the heart of it are the 12 partnerships, where relevant stakeholders work together on an equal basis to find common solutions to 12 identified urban challenges.

By January 2017, four new partnerships will start in addition to the already existing ones: circular economy coordinated by Oslo; digital transition coordinated by Estonia, Oulo (Finland) and Sofia (BG); urban mobility coordinated by Czech Republic and Karlsruhe and jobs and skills coordinated by Romania, Rotterdam (NL) and Jelgava (LV). 

The work on the Urban Agenda for the EU will be presented next week in Quito during the United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development (Habitat III), taking place from 17 to 20 October. It will also feed into the reflections on the establishment of a global "New Urban Agenda", which is a renewed political commitment for sustainable urban development, addressing poverty as well as the key urban challenges.
Those initiatives are being announced on the occasion of the European Week of Regions and Cities, which takes place from 10 to 13 October 2016 in Brussels. Carrying on from last year's OPEN URBAN DAY, the European Week of Regions and Cities has provided a platform for practitioners, officials and experts from all over Europe interested in the urban dimension of EU policies. This year there are 20 workshops and 3 site visits on urban matters getting more than 1000 urban practitioners together, ending with the Political Event on the Urban Agenda for the EU on Wednesday 12 October.

For more information please see:

Press Release
One-stop shop on urban matters
Urban Data Platform
State of European Cities Report
UNHabitat for a better urban future
Pact of Amsterdam & Working Programme
Infographic on the Urban Agenda for the EU
European Week of Regions and Cities
• Twitter: @EU_Regional  @CorinaCretuEU #EUUrbanAgenda

Winners of the Regiostars Awards 2016 announced

Posted into: The Assembly

Winners of the Regiostars Awards 2016 announced

On Tuesday 11th October, the European Commission's yearly RegioStars Awards ceremony took place in Brussels, as part of the European Week of Regions and Cities. 

This yearly EU-wide competition puts the spotlight on the most innovative and inspiring EU funded projects and illustrates, through concrete real-life examples, how Cohesion Policy supports the creation of economic growth and jobs.  In addition to bringing recognition to the selected projects, it aims at fostering the exchange of best practices between Cohesion Policy practitioners as well as inspiring other project managers and managing authorities.

Out of 104 applications, an independent expert jury first shortlisted 23 finalists.  In a second stage, five winning projects were selected to receive the prestigious RegioStars trophy from the hands of EU Commissioner for Regional Policy, Corina Creţu and the RegioStars Jury President, MEP Lambert van Nistelrooij. In addition, this year, the project Circular Ocean received a "Public Choice Award", based on the votes from attendees to the event. This year, the submitted projects competed in 5 categories: support to businesses operating in the global economy, social inclusion strategies, the circular economy, sustainable urban development and finally, a new category dedicated to projects looking at innovative solutions to manage EU funds more effectively.

The winners:
CATEGORY 1SMART GROWTH: Emerging opportunities in the global economy
COPENHAGEN CLEANTECH CLUSTER (Denmark / Capital Region of Denmark): Project Fiche - Video

CATEGORY 2 - SUSTAINABLE GROWTH - Circular Economy
CENTRO BIO: BIO-INDUSTRIES, BIOREFINERIES AND BIOPRODUCTS (Portugal / Centro): Project Fiche - Video

CATEGORY 3 - INCLUSIVE GROWTH: Integrated living - building inclusive and non-segregated communities
ACADEMY OF SOCIAL ECONOMY (Poland / Malopolska Region)  Video

CATEGORY 4 - CITYSTAR: Sustainable urban development
REVITALIZATION OF LOWER TOWN DISTRICT IN GDANSK (Poland / Pomorskie Voivodeship) Project Fiche - Video

CATEGORY 5 - EFFECTIVE MANAGEMENT: Making a difference by managing differently
TRANSPARENCY INITIATIVE JONVABALIAI (FIREFLIES) (Lithuania) Video

For more information see:

RegioStars Awards 2016

Brochure presenting the 2016 RegioStars Awards finalists

Strong Irish presence in Interreg North West Europe approvals

Posted into: The Assembly

Strong Irish presence in Interreg North West Europe approvals

Ireland has secured funding under 5 of the 8 applications which were approved by the Interreg North West Europe Monitoring Committee at their meeting in Germany on 13-15 September.

There are 7 Irish partners and one Lead Partner in the approved projects which will receive 60% of their project costs to roll out activities with their European counterparts under the three Programme Priorities of Innovation, Low Carbon and Resource & Materials Efficiency. 

At their meeting, the Monitoring Committee considered 13 Step 2 applications and approved 8. 

The Programme Secretariat in France will have finalised contracts with the approved projects by mid-November after which full details of partners and budgets will be available. 

The Southern Regional Assembly represents the Member State on the NWE Monitoring Committee and houses the Programme’s National Contact Point, Siobhán Rudden.  For further information on the Programme please contact Siobhan Rudden on srudden@southernassembly.ie at the Assembly or see the Interreg NWE website

Step 2 Approvals: approvals with an astrix have Irish partners

Project Acronym Project
Name
Priority Lead Partner 
AFTB* Towards Adhesive Free Timber Buildings 3 UK
Food Heroes* Food Heroes: Improving resource efficiency through designing innovative solutions to reduce food waste 3 NL
HeatNet NWE* HeatNet: Transition strategies for delivering low carbon district heat 2 (SO2) IE
PHOSforYOU* PHOSphorus Recovery from waste water FOR YOUr Life 3 DE
Re-DIRECT* REgional Development and Integration of unused biomass wastes as REsources for Circular products and economic Transformation 3 DE
ACE_Retrofitting Accelerating Condominium Energy Retrofitting 2.2 FR
QCAP Real-time “interactive storage” quality control in fresh agri-products 1 NL
Fibersort Market demonstration and validation of Fibersort technology 3 NL

Ennis County Library project stakeholder consultation begins

Posted into: The Assembly

Representatives of the Clare County Library service and KWA (Keith Williams Architects) pictured in Áras Contae an Chláir at the commencement of the stakeholder consultation stage of the County Library project.

Ennis County Library project stakeholder consultation begins
Recently appointed consultants for the design and delivery of the new County Library in Ennis visited Áras Contae an Chláir 22nd July to meet with representatives of the Municipal District of Ennis and key stakeholders in the flagship project. 

Clare County Council hosted the meeting which represents the commencement of the stakeholder consultation stage of the project. The process of consultation will continue up to the final design later in 2016.

The proposed €8.6m project will see the new library building developed at the site of the existing Glór facility on The Causeway Link providing a new County Library for Clare to replace the existing De Valera Library on Harmony Row. 

Earlier this year, Clare County Council was allocated a €3 million capital grant towards the cost of the proposed project under the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government’s Capital Funding Programme for Public Libraries. An additional €1 million in EU funding was also allocated from the Southern Regional Assembly’s Operational Programme 2014-2020. Clare County Council will fund the balance of €4.6 million of the overall cost of the project.

Helen Walsh, County Librarian commented: “It is great to begin the design process where all those with an interest in the new County Library project can voice their opinions. Today’s consultation is one of many which will be held over the next few weeks as we advance towards the sketch design stage of the project”

For futher detail please visit Clare County Council webite 

Regional Innovation Scoreboard 2016

Posted into: The Assembly

Regional Innovation Scoreboard 2016

The Regional Innovation Scoreboard is a regional extension of the European Innovation Scoreboard, assessing the innovation performance of European regions on a limited number of indicators. The RIS 2016 covers 214 regions across 22 EU countries and Norway. In addition, Cyprus, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg and Malta are included at country level.

Ireland is a Strong Innovator. Irish innovation performance increased until 2012. Performance declined strongly in 2013, after which it increased again in 2014-2015. Performance relative to the EU shows a similar trend, with a significant drop in 2013, and increased relative performance in 2014-2015.

Ireland’s relative strengths are in Innovators and Human resources. Ireland performs well above the EU average on License and patent revenues from abroad and International scientific co-publications. Other strong performing indicators are Exports of knowledge-intensive services and Employment in knowledge-intensive activities. Relative weaknesses are in Community designs, Non-R&D innovation expenditures, and R&D expenditures in the public sector.


Performance has increased considerably in License and patent revenues from abroad (29%), International scientific co-publications (7.3%), and New doctorate graduates (6.3%). Performance has declined most in Non-R&D innovation expenditures (-12%) and Venture capital investments (-8.8%).

The Southern and Eastern (S&E) Region and the Border, Midland and Western (BMW) region are both categorised as Strong Innovators. The S&E Region was previously categorised an Innovation Leader.
Innovation performance has decreased (-7%) in the S&E region compared to two years ago. The relative strengths of the region compared to the EU28 are in SMEs with marketing or organisational innovations, Tertiary education attainment, and SMEs innovating in-house and Exports of medium and high tech products. Relative weaknesses are in Public R&D expenditures, Non-R&D innovation expenditures, and EPO patent applications.

The region of the BMW is also categorised as a Strong Innovator. Innovation performance has decreased (-8%) compared to two years ago. The relative strengths of the BMW region compared to the EU28 are in SMEs with marketing or organisational innovations, SMEs innovating in-house, and Tertiary education attainment and Exports of medium and high tech products. Similar relative weaknesses as observed in the S&E region are Public R&D expenditures and Non-R&D innovation expenditures with Sales of new product innovations also identified.

General Findings
The most innovative regions are located in the most innovative countries, although regional innovative hubs exist in moderate innovator countries: Piemonte and Friuli-Venezia Giulia in Italy, País Vasco in Spain and Bratislavský kraj in Slovakia.
Specialisation in Key Enabling Technologies (KETs) increases regional innovation performance.

In Belgium, Greece, Ireland, the Netherlands and Romania, performance declined in all regions, and in all other countries except Bulgaria, performance declined for at least one out of two regions. Bulgaria is the only country where performance increased for all regions.

Business R&D expenditures are highest in several regions of the Nordic countries (Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden), Austria, Belgium, Ireland, Slovenia, Southern France and the Paris region, Southern Netherlands, large parts of Germany, much of the Czech Republic, and Southern UK.

Regions with a high share of non-R&D innovation expenditures in SMEs are distributed across the whole of Europe, with at least one region performing at least 20% above the EU average in 15countries. The share of non-R&D innovation expenditures is low in Bulgaria, Denmark, Ireland, the Netherlands, Romania, and Spain, where all regions, except Sud-Est (RO22), perform (well) below the EU average.

Performance in the share of SMEs that introduced a marketing or organisational innovation is to some extent determined by the performance of the country. Regions where performance is at least 20% above the EU average are mostly found in Austria, France, Germany (all regions except Saarland (DEC0)), Greece, Ireland, Italy, Portugal (all regions except Norte (PT11)), and the UK.

Innovation excellence is concentrated in relatively few areas in Europe. All 36 EU regional Innovation Leaders are located in seven EU Member States: Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Sweden and the United Kingdom.

For most countries, there is limited variation in regional performance groups, suggesting that regional and national innovation performances are linked. However, a stronger variation in some (mainly larger) countries also highlights regional specificities and the existence of regional 'pockets of excellence'.
In Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Ireland and Romania, all regions are in the same performance group, and in 12 countries, there are two different regional performance groups. Only in four larger Member States (France, Germany, Italy and Spain), there are three different regional performance groups.


RIS methodology
The RIS 2016 replicates the European Innovation Scoreboard methodology used at national level to measure performance of regional systems of innovation. The RIS 2016 uses data for 12 of the 25 indicators used in the EIS for 214 regions across Europe. Compared to the RIS 2014, the number of indicators has increased thanks to the availability of regional data on exports of medium-high and high technology-intensive manufacturing industries. As both Germany and Greece are now covered at the NUTS2 level, the nominal number of regions covered has increased as well.


Data Availability
There are large differences of regional data availability across countries. Data availability is very good for the whole nine-year period at 95% or more for seven countries (Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Poland, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia), good (below 95% but above average) for eight countries (Austria, Finland, France, Hungary, Italy, Portugal, Spain and Sweden), below average for three countries (Croatia, Norway and the UK) and far below average for five countries (Denmark, Germany, Greece, Ireland and the Netherlands).

Text, maps and graphs extracted from the Regional Innovation Scoreboard 2016.

Overview of RIS

 

Southern Regional Assembly sets out its Plan

Posted into: The Assembly

L to R: Mr. Tim Lucey, Chief Executive; Mr. Stephen Blair, Director; Cllr. Michael O’Shea, Cathaoirleach, Cllr. Seamus Cosaí Fitzgerald, Leas-Cathaoirleach of the Southern Regional Assembly and Mr. Michael Lynch, Assistant Director pictured at the launch of the Corporate Plan 2015-2019.

Southern Regional Assembly sets out its Plan

The plan sets out how the Assembly will address and deliver on the range of functions and responsibilities devolved to it. The Southern Regional Assembly emerged from the Government’s “Putting People First” policy paper and the subsequent Local Government Reform Act 2014. The Act changed the landscape of regional governance in Ireland, establishing three new Regional Assemblies in place of the existing two Regional Assemblies and eight Regional Authorities.

The function of regional planning was transferred from the Regional Authorities to the new Regional Assemblies and this function was expanded to include both spatial planning and economic development reflecting an enhanced role for regional government in Ireland.

Welcoming the Plan the newly elected Cathaoirleach, Cllr. Michael O’Shea remarked “the Assembly is embarking on an exciting process of formulating a Regional Spatial and Economic Strategy. The strategy will be informed by the newly emerging National Planning Framework. Devolving the development of this far reaching strategy to the Assembly is significant. I believe it recognises the need for strong regional governance to ensure the needs of the region are addressed”.

Speaking at the launch of the plan the outgoing Cathaoirleach, Cllr. Damien Geoghegan said “the Assembly working in close collaboration with our constituent Local Authorities and other public bodies is committed to implementing the goals and objectives set out in this document for the betterment of the region and its people”.
The Plan identifies the specific objectives to be achieved by the Assembly over the next five years and sets out how its statutory functions are to be discharged and implemented.
In addition to its responsibility to develop the regional economic and spatial strategy the Assembly coordinates actions to support effectiveness in Local Government and public services. The Assembly continues in its responsibility for the management of European co-funded regional programmes. For a number of EU-funded transnational programmes the Assembly acts as the national contact point and provides a range of supports. 

For further information please contact Derville Brennan, Programme Executive, Research and Communications, t. + 353 (0) 87 7793755, e. dbrennan@southernassembly.ie

S&E Regional Operational Programme helps fund the new County Library in Ennis

Posted into: The Assembly

Pictured in Áras Contae an Chláir at the contract signing marking the appointment of consultants for the design and delivery of the flagship County Library project in Ennis FRONT L-R: Gerard Dollard (Interim Chief Executive, Clare County Council); Cllr. James Breen (Cathaoirleach, Clare County Council); Keith Williams (Keith Williams Architects Ltd); and Cllr. Ann Norton (Mayor of Ennis). BACK L-R: Siobhan Mulcahy (Clare Arts Officer); Liz Kelly (Director, glór); Helen Walsh (Clare County Librarian); Ruth Hurley (Senior Executive Architect, Clare County Council); and Niall Barrett (Director of Service, Finance, Clare County Council).

S&E Regional Operational Programme helps fund the new County Library in Ennis

The proposed €8.6m project will see the new library building developed at the site of the existing Glór facility on The Causeway Link providing a new County Library for Clare to replace the existing De Valera Library on Harmony Row.

A full design team has been appointed to progress the design and planning phases of the new build project and the Council anticipates that contractors could be on site during early 2017, subject to statutory planning procedures and approval.

Earlier this year, Clare County Council was allocated a €3 million capital grant towards the cost of the proposed project under the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government’s Capital Funding Programme for Public Libraries. An additional €1 million in EU funding was also allocated from the Southern Regional Assembly’s S&E Regional Operational Programme 2014-2020. The Regional Programme is co-funded by the ERDF. Clare County Council will fund the balance of €4.6 million of the overall cost of the project.

Cllr. James Breen, Cathaoirleach of Clare County Council has welcomed the signing of the design contract, adding, “The development of a new County Library facility has long been sought after by past and present Members of the Council, as well as by the local community.”

“Clare County Library is one of our most valuable resources and it is appropriate therefore, that it is provided with a modern facility befitting its status from which to continue to deliver a vitally important service to the people of Clare," added the Cathaoirleach.

Gerard Dollard, Interim Chief Executive of Clare County Council said, “Clare County Council has committed to providing €4.6 million of the overall cost of the project from its own resources which underlines the Council’s ongoing commitment to provide improved facilities and infrastructure.”

Mr. Dollard added that the proposed development “will strengthen Clare’s reputation as a cultural centre as well as support economic and social activity in Ennis.”

The architect-led design team appointed today by Clare County Council comprises Keith Williams Architects Ltd (Architects), Ove Arup & Partners Ireland Ltd T/A Arup (Civil & Structural), Axiseng M & E Ltd T/A AxisEng (Mechanical & Electrical), AECOM Professional Services (Quantity Surveying Services) and OLM Consultancy (PSDP).

Helen Walsh, Clare County Librarian commented, “Ireland has seen some ambitious library buildings developed in the last decade and some outstanding and beautiful architectural structures have been achieved as a result. It is envisioned that the new County Library will be one of these buildings combining technologically advanced services whilst keeping the customer at the heart of service delivery. It truly will be a library for the 21st century."

“This development will provide a model of best practice and will include measures to maximise the sustainability of the scheme for the County,” commented Ruth Hurley, Senior Executive Architect with Clare County Council. “It is anticipated that the building design will provide a contemporary response to the modern library whilst remaining user friendly, energy efficient and adaptable for future changes in use.”

The Summer 2016 edition of Panorama is now available online.

Posted into: The Assembly

The Summer 2016 edition of Panorama is now available online.

The main feature offers an in-depth look at one region, and this time it is the turn of Pomorskie in Poland. An interview with the region's marshal, project examples and factual background give an overview of how cohesion policy is helping this region meet its challenges. They also look at the European Week of Regions and Cities (the new name for OPEN DAYS), previewing the themes and events for this year's edition, and the research which will be showcased during the week's "EWRC University" sessions.

In addition they aso look at the work of the High Level Group on Simplification, the Interact programme, and the EU Strategy for the Adriatic and Ionian Region. The Projects section features contributions from Austria, Hungary, France and the United Kingdom, and a new, expanded projects feature goes more in depth on a project involving young people in the development of transport policy in Poland.

For the full edition please click here

Partners - the online game about EU Regional Development

Posted into: The Assembly

Partners - the online game about EU Regional Development

The EU Commission created a web documentary on Regional and Urban Policy? It is available in Deutch, Français, Polski, Suomi, Eesti, Italiano, Português, English, Nederlands, Slovenscina.

 

 

OPEN Days – Celebrating Europe Day in the Southern and Eastern Region

Posted into: The Assembly

OPEN Days – Celebrating Europe Day in the Southern and Eastern Region

Europe Day falls on the 9th May and it’s a chance to acknowledge what the EU means in your Region. This year the Southern Regional Assembly is organising a series of visits to projects co-funded by the ERDF and the Irish exchequer under the Regional Programme. The visits are planned for the last two weeks of May and we hope that a broad representation of citizens and elected officials and interested parties will join us for the visits. Here is a list of the centres and the programme for each visit.

Centre for Advanced Photonics & Process Analysis (CAPPA) Cork Institute of Technology on Tuesday 17th May

Programme for CAPPA visit

Pharmaceutical & Molecular Biotechnology Research Centre (PMBRC) Waterford Institute of Technology on Wednesday 18th May

Programme for PMBRC visit 

Shannon Applied Biotechnology Centre (Shannon ABC) Institute of Technology Tralee on Tuesday 24th May 

Programme for Shannon ABC Tralee visit

Shannon Applied Biotechnology Centre (Shannon ABC) Limerick Institute of Technology on Wednesday 25th May

Programme for Shannon ABC Limerick visit

Micro Sensors for Clinical Analysis (MiCRA) Institute of Technology Tallaght on Thursday 26th May

Programme for MiCRA, Tallaght visit

Open Day events are mapped on DG Regional Policy's interactive map follow the link to view the events planned for the Southern and Eastern region of Ireland: http://ec.europa.eu/regional_policy/en/policy/communication/inform-network/map/

 

‘Digital Test Tube’ selected to represent the South-East at EU event in Bucharest

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‘Digital Test Tube’ selected to represent the South-East at EU event in Bucharest

'Digital Test Tube' the innovative and ground-breaking concept by Daniel Thewlis has been selected as the ICT innovative concept to represent the South-East at the eDIGIREGION workshop in Bucharest.

Daniel Thewlis presented his concept ‘Digital Test Tube’ at the recent TSSG/SEBIC Industry Workshop held in Kilkenny on the 19th April. The concept was adjudicated on by a panel of experts drawn from Enterprise Ireland, Kernel Capital, Waterford Institute of Technology and South-East Action Plan for Jobs Implementation Committee.

In a three-minute pitch, Daniel outlined his idea to provide a software solution targeted at solving issues experienced by scientists performing PCR testing in laboratories around the world.

Based in Waterford, Daniel Thewlis is a past pupil of Abbey Community College, Ferrybank, Co Waterford. He graduated with a BSc in Genetics & Cell Biology at Dublin City University and most recently participated on the Enterprise Ireland (EI) New Frontiers programme at Waterford Institute of Technology’s ArcLabs incubation hub which recently announced plans for a €2.5m expansion.

Commenting on the concept, Mr Niall Olden, Founding Partner of Kernel Capital said “Digital Test Tube is an innovative software product that addresses a compelling market need for efficiencies in the delivery of laboratory PCR testing.”

The winning concept now goes forward to represent the South-East Ireland region at the eDIGIREGION international two-day workshop to be held in Bucharest, Romania on 18/19May 2016. There Daniel will receive intensive support and mentoring from a team of international experts, each a specialist in the commercialisation process (including market analysis, product development, business models, funding…).

Commenting, on the eDIGIREGION Call for Innovative Concepts, Prof. Bill O’Gorman, Director of Research at WIT ArcLabs, said “The call for concepts is a major milestone in the project and demonstrates how EU funded projects can have a significant impact in the practical development of regional innovation systems. Daniel Thewlis now has the opportunity to learn from an international panel of experts. Such learning, I’m sure, will be of major benefit to both Mr. Thewlis and the South-East region.”

Interreg North-West Europe Call 3 Now Open

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Interreg North-West Europe Call 3 Now Open
The third call for Interreg North-West Europe is now open with a deadline of Friday 27th May at 11am Irish time (12pm CET)

The Programme is looking for transnational cooperation projects that can deliver concrete results for the North-West Europe area and its citizens under the three areas of Innovation, Low Carbon and Resource and Materials Efficiency.

The Programme encourages public, scientific, private and civil society organisations to cooperate with a view to improving the economic, environmental, territorial and social development of Europe's regions. The Programme co-finances these organisations to work together in transnational projects on specific themes.

The Programme operates a two-step application process, with a light-touch project application at Step 1 which is developed into a full Step 2 project application, if approved.  Success at Step 2 means full approval and a grant award.

If you have an idea that could become a project application, or are considering joining a partnership, we would like to hear from you.  Please contact Siobhán Rudden, National Contact Point for Ireland for advice and guidance about the application process and programme rules.

Email: srudden@southernassembly.ie
Tel: +353 51 318100
Twitter: @srudden

For complete information about Call 3 please visit: www.nweurope.eu

*Interreg NWE is one of the fifteen transnational cooperation programmes financed by the European Union. It is financed through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).
 

SMART Regions Conference, Brussels 1st & 2nd June 2016

Posted into: The Assembly

SMART Regions Conference, Brussels 1st & 2nd June 2016

Regions across the European Union have already developed their national or regional innovation strategies for smart specialisation. They provide a strategic framework for the innovation-driven economic transformation of European regions and set out the main priorities for investments. They address emerging opportunities and market developments in order to build a competitive advantage by developing and matching research and innovation strengths to business needs. European Structural Investment Funds are the main financing source.

This SMART Regions Conference will highlight the key role of regions in developing new-growth dynamics for Europe, based on bottom-up entrepreneurship and innovation. It will mark the mobilisation of this potential for transformation in priority areas, e.g. energy transition, digital growth, circular economy, agro-food or industrial modernisation. Smart specialisation strategies can leverage numerous new growth opportunities for all regions, when aligning their business driven smart specialisation investments in new European value chains.

This High-Level event will accelerate the set-up of effective partnerships for co-investing across regions that commit to their smart specialisation priorities. It will show a way forward in using the synergies between the different public and private funding mechanism to support such investment dynamics.

During the two days, the participants will also have the opportunity to visit the Smart Regions Exhibition where regions will showcase their smart specialisation areas.

Deadline for registration is 17th May 2016.

For further information please refer to the conference brochure

Atlantic Area Programme - First call for projects opens on 26/04/16.

Posted into: The Assembly

Atlantic Area Programme - First call for projects opens on 26/04/16.

The INTERREG Atlantic Area Programme has announced the launch of it's first call for projects to open on the 26th April 2016, deadline for submission of Expressions of Interest(EOIs) will be 27th May 2016  The selection process for EOIs will take place in September 2016.  

A total amount of €185M has been allocated to fund projects among the Atlantic regions of 5 European countries covering priorities such as:
1: Stimulating innovation and competitiveness
2: Fostering resource efficiency
3: Strengthening the territory's resilience to risks of natural, climate and human origin
4: Enhancing biodiversity and the natural and cultural assets

The Programme Manual and online application form will be made available in the second half of April, check the website for updates.

Projects Ideas registration and partners search tool are already available at www.atlanticarea.eu/project

For further deails please visit the EU Calls Monitor section on our website. 

URBACT III 1st call for Implementation Networks has been launched

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URBACT III 1st call for Implementation Networks has been launched

URBACT, the European programme for integrated urban development, is pleased to announce that a new call for Implementation Networks was launched on the 22 of March. The deadline for submitting applications is 22nd June 2016.

These new networks aim at supporting cities with the delivery of integrated urban strategies and action plans. Taking part in an Implementation Network, cities will share experiences and good practices, by working together on improving their strategies and action plans and generate new ideas to address challenges related to sustainable urban development.

More specifically, the call targets the cities from the EU 28 Member States, Norway and Switzerland that already have an integrated urban strategy/ action plan addressing a specific policy challenge and secured funding to finance the implementation of this strategy/ action-plan.

The available budget per network is between €600,000 – €750,000, depending on the number of partners, with an additional budget of €127,000 for expert support. Up to 15 Implementation Networks will be selected during this call.

All information on the call is available on the URBACT website where updates will be provided concerning further events and networking opportunities for partners.

eDIGIREGION Call for Innovative ICT Concepts

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eDIGIREGION Call for Innovative ICT Concepts

The eDIGIREGION project is looking for innovative concepts that are ICT related and will be of benefit to furthering the development, sustainability and profitability of industry (Industry 4.0) and / or agriculture. This Call for Concepts provides an opportunity to promote your concept and to receive intensive development / commercialisation support in an international two-day workshop to be held in Bucharest, Romania on 18th / 19th May, 2016.

All travel and accommodation expenses to Bucharest will be paid for the promoter of the chosen concept.

Closing date for entries is 25th March 2016. To apply and/or to receive an application form contact concepts@edigiregion.eu 

For further details please click here 

The Annual RegioStars Awards competition has been launched.

Posted into: The Assembly

 

 

 

 

 

5 Award Competition Categories now open


The Annual RegioStars Awards competition has been launched.


Highlighting good practice in regional development and original and innovative projects, the RegioStars aims to inspire regions and project managers. 

There are five RegioStars Award categories for 2016:

Cat. 1 Smart Growth: Emerging opportunities in the global economy


Cat. 2 Sustainable Growth: Circular Economy


Cat. 3 Inclusive Growth: Integrated living – building inclusive and non-segregated communities


Cat. 4 CityStar: Innovative solutions for sustainable urban development


Cat. 5 Effective Management: Making a difference by managing differently

This year's RegioStars award ceremony will take place on Tuesday, October 11th, during the 2016 European Week of Regions and Cities.

The RegioStars Awards puts the spotlight on the most innovative and inspiring projects from around the continent, will your region win a prestigous 2016 RegioStars Awards.  

Applications can be submitted by the regional or local Managing Authority or by the project mananger but with the endorsement of the responsible Managing Authority, please click here to submit your application before April 15th. 

The winners in each category will receive a RegioStars trophy and a certificate presented by European Commissioner for Regional Policy, Corina Creţu, and the President of the RegioStars jury.

For each winner a short video is also produced which will be published online followed by a promotional campaign on social media.

To view vidoes of previous winners please click here

For more information on the awards and ceremony at the European Week of Regions and Cities click here or #EUWRC

On Twitter @EU_Regional  - #Regiostars


 

Register for the Interreg North-West Europe Project Ideas Lab

Posted into: The Assembly

Register for the Interreg North-West Europe Project Ideas Lab

Register for the Interreg NWE Project Ideas Lab

Making an application to the Interreg North-West Europe Programme?

The next call for project proposals will be open from 18th April until 27th May and a Project Ideas Lab will be held to support applicants in finding new partners, showcasing your project idea and to get advice from the Interreg NWE team.

Date:            Thursday 7th April, 9am – 4pm
Location:     Frankfurt

The Project Ideas Lab will focus on what makes an application successful and the pitfalls to avoid.

Registration is free, but compulsory due to limited places.  Register now on https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/project-ideas-lab-registration-21346421722

For further details on the the Lab or the Interreg North-West Europe Programme please contact the Irish Contact Point Ms Siobhan Rudden:

Email:       srudden@southernassembly.ie
Tel:           +353 51 318100
Twitter:     @srudden
 

LIFE Information Day, Tuesday (AM) 15th March 2016, Custom House Dublin

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LIFE Information Day, Tuesday (AM) 15th March 2016, Custom House Dublin

The LIFE Programme is the EU's financial instrument supporting environmental and climate action projects throughout the EU. It contributes to sustainable development and to the achievement of the objectives and targets of the Europe 2020 Strategy, the 7th Union Environmental Action Programme and other relevant EU environment and climate strategies and plans.

 

This year’s LIFE Information Day is aimed at informing potential applicants about the LIFE programme and will take place on the morning of Tuesday 15th March 2016 in the Custom House in Dublin.

 

The main focus on the day will include providing potential applicants with the opportunity to meet with successful Irish projects who will be on hand to talk individually to anyone wishing to  learn more about a particular project, including  planning and writing the application and managing the implementation programme. Presentations will also be made on practical issues such as tips on preparing and writing a LIFE application and also avoiding common pitfalls that arise with projects during implementation.

 

Anybody who is interested in registering should do so by mail at LIFE@environ.ie as soon as possible. Further details will issue following registration.

URBACT announce new call for Implementation Networks

Posted into: The Assembly

URBACT announce new call for Implementation Networks

URBACT will shortly be launching a new call for Implementation Networks which will be formally opened in mid to late March 2016.

A launch event will take place in Brussels on 23rd March 2016 from 3.00 pm to 6.30 pm, at the Conference Centre Albert Borschette, to register for this event please click here

Prior to this the Irish Contact Point for URBACT will be holding two events on March 11th at Maynooth University.

The first event - "URBACT INFO day III"  -will take place from 10.30am to 12.30pm and will provide all interested practitioners with the latest information from URBACT and from the Implementation Networks Call.

The second event  - a workshop on leading an Implementation Network -  will be held from 2pm to 4pm and will provide interested practitioners who wish to lead with all the background they need and will answer any questions that practitioners have about leading an Implementation Network.

All interested parties are welcome to attend either or both of these events. Attendance is free but registration is essential.  

Please register at; https://urbact-ireland-info-day-workshop.eventbrite.ie

For further info please click here.

Beyond this event your Irish contact point will be providing regular updates throughout 2016 on the URBACT programme more generally. We strongly advise you to consult our;
Twitter account, https://twitter.com/URBACT_IE
Facebook account, https://www.facebook.com/urbact.ireland/
and the dedicated Irish section on the main URBACT page (keep an eye on the main URBACT site as this page will be uploaded shortly)

If you any queries please do not hesitate to contact the Irish Contact Point on URBACTIreland@nuim.ie

ESPON 2020 calls for Tender

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ESPON 2020 calls for Tender

The National Institute for Regional and Spatial Analysis (NIRSA) based in Maynooth University is delighted to have once again been appointed the Irish Contact Point for the EU-funding programme, ESPON.

The new programme, ESPON 2020, was formally launched in June 2015 but it was just before Christmas that the first calls were issued.  Presently, there are calls open under two pillars or Specific Objectives:

Specific Objective 1: Continued Production of Territorial Evidence Through Applied Research and Analyses.  
Under this Objective, seven calls for tender have been issued.  These calls shall contribute to the further development and improvement of the ESPON knowledge base; with the outcome of the calls contributing to the enhancement of the European territorial evidence base.

The seven calls are under the following themes:

1)      The Geography of New Employment Dynamics in Europe
2)      The World in Europe, global FDI flows towards Europe
3)      Small and Medium-sized Enterprises in European Regions and Cities
4)      Territories and low-carbon economy
5)      Inner Peripheries: national territories facing challenges of access to basic services of general interest
6)      Possible European Territorial Futures
7)      Comparative Analysis of Territorial Governance and Spatial Planning Systems in Europe

Further information on these calls, together with details on how to receive the full dossier of terms of reference, are available to download here

Specific Objective 2: Upgraded Knowledge Transfer and Use of Analytical User Support
Better known as 'Targeted Analysis', policy-makers and practitioners are invited to submit proposals for Targeted Analyses, meeting their particular policy demands and evidence needs. These projects shall use ESPON territorial evidence in concrete practice with the objective of directly contributing to informing policy decisions and territorial development strategies. Proposals can be submitted by groups of stakeholders sharing a common analytical need as well as by individual stakeholders.
(Please note that the opportunity to submit stakeholder proposals remains continually open throughout the lifetime of the ESPON 2020 Cooperation Programme. Stakeholders are therefore welcome to submit their proposals at anytime throughout the year and these will be considered in the subsequent selection round. A further announcement on the next closing date for the evaluation of proposals shall be made during the first half of 2016).
Further information on this call is available here

Both these calls are open to Universities - with Specific Objective 1 Calls in particular having been designed with Universities and Research Agencies in mind.  As such, we would be grateful if you would circulate the details of these calls to those members of your research community who you feel would have an interest in the type and range of projects covered under this fund.

Also, as Irish Contact Point, we would be happy to answer any questions or meet with you/members of your research community to discuss the opportunities these calls present.  We encourage you to consider the potential of this EU funding programme - and we look forward to assisting you in any way we can.

ESPON Irish Contact Point Team

Ms. Caroline Creamer - caroline.creamer@nuim.ie / 086 8170436
Prof. Mark Boyle - mark.g.boyle@nuim.ie

Call for tender for applied research, Terms of Reference - “Territories and low-carbon economy”


 

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