Regions in Focus 2023 sheds light on regional development
The Association of Irish Regions (AIR), the representative body for the Regional Assemblies, hosted its first Regional seminar and training event to explore the role of regions in navigating present and future challenges on the 7th – 9th February 2023 at the Four Seasons Hotel, Monaghan. The seminar and training event proved to be a great success and was an opportunity to create a platform to hear and discuss regional perspectives for policy making, economic and spatial development and how the Regional Assemblies are a key delivery mechanism for strong regional development.
Over the three days, over 260 participants, including councillors and some local authority executive staff, engaged with and enjoyed discussions on enhanced regional planning, strong regional economic development, connected regions and EU affairs. There was representation from every local authority in Ireland at the event.
Fascinating and thought-provoking keynote addresses from entrepreneur Eddie O’Connor and journalist and environmentalist John Gibbons offered much food for thought for those in attendance. OECD Policy Analyst Michael Flood also addressed the event. Mr Flood is one of a larger contingent from the OECD and was on hand to launch a report on rethinking Ireland’s regional attractiveness
Other speakers included Anne Graham, Chief Executive Officer with the National Transport Authority, Professor Niamh Moore-Cherry, Professor of Urban Governance and Development at University College Dublin, Niall Cussen, Chief Executive and Planning Regulator at the Office of the Planning Regulator, and Helen Healy, Head of Regional Policy at Ibec, along with many more.
There was also a seminar on emerging EU policy and funding opportunities, sessions and a panel discussion with presentations from representatives on a range of EU Funding programmes.
Newstalk radio presenter Jonathan Healy served as MC for the event, which was sponsored by IPB Insurance and supported by the Southern Regional Assembly, Northern and Western Regional Assembly and Eastern and Midland Regional Assembly.