Did you know that this year marks 15 years of national activity for CEAI – born as NACEC from six regional networks which emerged across the regions in the early noughties.
As the newly appointed CEO, I look forward to driving the future growth of the Association, building on the legacy of the early years and continuing to strengthen the CEAI community of enterprise centres and enterprise hubs around the country.
As the Association which represents these centres and hubs, we have an important role to play within the National Hub Network. This year will see the first National Hub Strategy launched and we welcome the opportunity to work side-by-side with key stakeholders to develop this Strategy.
On a final note, CEAI is delighted to share news from the community so don’t hesitate to get in touch if you would like to feature any updates here.
In partnership with various experts and market leaders, CEAI is delighted to announce a new series of Webinars beginning this April with:
THE INSIDE TRACK TO MAKING CONNECTIONS
APRIL 21st 11.30am – 1.00pm
Booking Link: https://forms.office.com/e/TZabRTyuxe
The focus of this Webinar will be to support you identify opportunities for your enterprise centre or hub and to understand what this could mean for the following areas –
• Enterprise and industry engagement – Key insights into attraction of companies
• International connections to opportunities for hubs
• Enterprise development and job creation linked to networking and international connections
EXPERT PRESENTERS INCLUDE:
Katherine Fitzpatrick – International Relations Specialist
Specialist in building strategic global networks as well as developing and managing projects to support the local and regional enterprise ecosystems.
As the former Director of International Relations at Cork Chamber, she engaged extensively with stakeholders across the public, private and not-for-profit sectors, both in Ireland and abroad, with a strong focus on place-based innovation, SME supports and economic development projects. Katherine led the evolution and delivery of the Chamber’s ‘Connecting Cork’ initiative, which focused on international promotion of Cork as an investment location through diaspora engagement, talent attraction, trade missions and international networking. She has extensive experience of EU project management and regional cluster management.
Sean Donovan – Industry Engagement Facilitator Extended Campus MTU
Specialist in Industry Engagement and connections to companies- Ireland and internationally.
Sean has an extensive history of experience in senior management roles in industry prior to his current role. Since his appointment as Industry Engagement Facilitator, he has applied strong commercial focus to business and rigorous consistency to business development, to reach out, connect to Industry. His model has delivered significant return on investment in terms of industry engagement and reach out to FDI companies through linkages with IDA, Enterprise Ireland companies as well as indigenous SME’s.
The model will also highlight the avenues/ access to human resources potentially available through linkages to Universities and colleges, as sourcing of talent and talent attraction is a critical factor in companies deciding to locate in a particular region.
Recently, we travelled to Szczecin University in Poland to meet with our FAIRPRENEURS Project Partners. FAIRPRENEURS – Ethical, Fair and Green Youth Entrepreneurship Education in line with the Sustainable Development Goals – is an Erasmus + Project funded under the 2022 KA220-YOU – Cooperation Partnerships in Youth Funding Call.
The focus of FAIRPRENEURS is to enable youth educators to provide inclusive, innovative and specific entrepreneurship education for young entrepreneurs who are interested in establishing a fair and sustainable business, reflecting the ethos of the Sustainable Development Goals. The Project aims to help young entrepreneurs anchor sustainability in their business strategy – addressing global challenges, increasing business resilience and remaining competitive in the market place.
Partners include organisations from Germany, Denmark, Cyprus and Poland as well as Irish participation from CEAI and Momentum Consulting.
It’s been a particularly busy time for the QHubs team of advisors and consultants as the Programme moves closer to its national launch in Summer 2023.
The QHubs National Steering Group met on March 3rd in the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment where an overview of progress since the last meeting (October 26th 2022) was shared. A number of hubs and centres across the Midlands are now part of the first cohort onboarded onto the Programme, beginning with the completion of the QHubs Diagnostic. The data outputs from this diagnostic exercise were presented – demonstrating clearly the potential of the Programme as a knowledge tool for future decision-making.
A special thanks to members of the Advisory Group members who attended, including representation from Enterprise Ireland, IDA, Údarás, NSAI, Skillnet Ireland, CCMA/LGMA, Regional Enterprise Plan Managers Network, Connected Hubs, Department or Rural and Community Development and the Irish Knowledge Transfer Leadership Group – with particular thanks to Sarah Morgan, Midlands Enterprise Plan Manager and her team for supporting the rollout of Step one across the Midlands.
Earlier this month, a number of centres and hubs were invited to join the CEAI Planning Workshop for the 2023 Champion Changemakers Programme. We had the good fortune to be hosted by Dunhill Ecopark who rolled out the red carpet for us.
A particular thank you to Senan Cooke for taking the time to join us over lunch and share the story of Dunhill Enterprise Centre and the emergence of the Dunhill Ecopark Project. The team at Dunhill are long-standing members of CEAI and we were delighted to have the opportunity to spend time with them – thank you to Helen, Shirley, Alison and Senan for your warm welcome and excellent hospitality.
Pictured above with Senan Cooke (second from left) are Fiona Descoteaux, Innovate Communities; Gary O’Meara, Meath Enterprise and Sarah Prosser, Facilitator. Senan published ‘The Enterprising Community: A Bottom-up Perspective on the Capacity of Communities to Regenerate’ in 2018.
FUTURE ACTIVATORS: Human centred system design in a Dublin town @ Innovate Communities
Details: In 2020 Innovate Communities with partners in Italy, Spain and Lithuania embarked on an ERASMUS+ project, FUTURE. The ambition of FUTURE was to look at moving architects, urban planners, engineers, and sustainability students focus from the city problem to the people experiencing the problem. People are at the heart of every complex system and they are the ones that can, and will provide the solutions.
From 2020 to 2023, Innovate Communities along with their partners, collectively designed a capacity building programme for testing human centred system design within third level (universities) and the Dublin community of Ballymun.
When: Tuesday, April 4th, 2023 9:00 am – 10:00 am
For Project Details: https://www.innovatecommunities.ie/our-work/place/the-liberties-testbed
Visual Storytelling with Little Cloud Productions @ Meath Enterprise
Details: Join the RISELab #SpeakSessions hosted by Meath Enterprise where we will discuss the art of Visual Storytelling with two leading experts Nicola Lane and Karl Somers from Little Cloud Productions. Find out how to:
– Create a solid foundation before the professionals
– Speak the language of a videographer
– Tell your story and camera presence
– Complete social media edits
– Implement video strategy into your business
… AND MUCH MORE.
When: Tuesday, April 18th 2023 from 11:00 am – 12:00 pm
Nicola Lane and Karl Somers are the founders of Meath-based video strategy company Little Cloud Productions. They are passionate about helping local businesses to thrive using the power of video strategy. They focus on creating only the types of strategic video assets they know work best to communicate your brand message at scale.
CONGRATULATIONS TO THE RDI HUB on partnering with Skillnet Ireland to launch The Innovation Exchange across Kerry in partnership with Skillnet Ireland.
As the newest regional channel partner of The Innovation Exchange, the RDI Hub is a world-class centre for design-led, digital innovation located in Ireland’s South West. It focuses on digitisation, ideation and commercialisation of innovation and research in the Digital, AI, Data and related technologies sectors.
The RDI Hub are the second CEAI member – following the Galway Technology Centre – to partner with Skillnet Ireland on The Innovation Exchange Programme – Ireland’s innovation marketplace connecting large companies facing digital transformation challenges with technology companies that can fast-track the solution.
Pictured (L-R) at the launch of The Innovation Exchange at the RDI Hub in Killorglin, County Kerry on Monday are, Paul Healy, Skillnet Ireland, Sinead O’ Riordan, The Innovation Exchange, Liam Cronin, RDI Hub, Minister for Education Norma Foley and Bertie Murphy, FEXCO.
BIG NEWS FROM THE GUINNESS ENTERPRISE CENTRE as their team recently announced the creation of a new Sustainability Cluster – Sustainability@GEC.
As part of this cluster development, the Guinness Enterprise Centre GEC will become the new home of Techies Go Green, a movement of more than 300 IT and tech-oriented companies which are committed to decarbonising their businesses. Techies Go Green will use the facility as its base of operations, as well as for educational events for signatories.
Furthermore, the GEC is building on its own green strategy, investing €500,000 in making its premises more sustainable. The majority of the funding – made available through an Enterprise Ireland Regional Enterprise Transition Scheme (RETS) grant – has already gone towards numerous upgrades across the building including more heat-efficient windows, a new heat pump system and sensor-controlled LED light fittings.
(Left to right) Eamonn Sayers, manager, Guinness Enterprise Centre; Eamon Ryan, TD, Minister for the Environment and Climate; Michael O Hara, co-founder, Techies Go Green and Dr. Mary O Riordan, CEO, HaPPE Earth, at the launch of the partnership between the Guinness Enterprise Centre and Techies Go Green to build out the Centres sustainability cluster, Sustainability@GEC. The centre, whose rooftop is home to 18,000 bees, also recently announced a 500K investment in making the facility more sustainable.
Ciarán Kenny is the newly appointed CEO of Nutgrove Enterprise Park in Rathfarnham, Dublin 14.
I hail originally from Donegal and am a UCD graduate. I am a member of Chartered Accountants Ireland and has an extensive accounting and finance background having worked in Deloitte and the Kerry Group. Before joining Nutgrove Enterprise Park, I held Managing Director and Chief Financial Officer roles across a number of Irish SMEs. I’m looking forward to working closely with the Board at Nutgrove Enterprise Park to build on the business support services at the centre, so that we can better support local entrepreneurs at each stage of their journey.
Amanda Trimbell is newly appointed as Business Development Manager to the High Performance Building Alliance HPBA – a Green Business Innovation Hub – based in Enniscorthy, Co Wexford.
Following a 20 year career in the UK Public Sector, leading on the employment and skills agenda for local government, I have recently returned home to Co. Wexford. I am excited to be heading up the High Performance Building Alliance, which has been acknowledged as a Model of Best Practice and aims to establish Ireland as a world class leader in high performance buildings including Nearly Zero Energy Buildings (NZEB). I am at the early stages of developing a Green Business innovation hub which will foster collaboration and innovation within the sustainability sector and hope to combine my passions for nature and the environment with social mobility through this work.
Eoin Naughton has recently been appointed as Manager of Clermont Screen Hub – a new Incubation Hub servicing the film, game and creative technology sectors – located in Rathnew, Co. Wicklow.
With a background in the film industry, I have worked as both a Location Manager and Producer on some of the biggest productions to be made in Ireland, More recently, I ran a successful event management company which was sold in 2021. As Hub Manager, my goal is to foster a collaborative and innovative community that supports the growth and success of all our members. In addition to cultivating a culture of collaboration and innovation, I will also focus on strengthening the Hub’s partnerships with external organisations and individuals. By building strong relationships with stakeholders in our community and beyond, we can create new opportunities for our members and expand the reach and impact of our work.
CEAI is the National Representative Association for Community Enterprise Centres and Enterprise Hubs across the National Hub Network.
The Association represents the interest of the 250+ Enterprise Ireland funded community enterprise centres, enterprise hubs and enterprise projects – to government, to funding agencies, to the National Hub Network and to the wider stakeholders community.
In Addition, CEAI provides representation, supports, training and mentoring, learning, independent advice and guidance, thought leadership and best in class insights on an individual basis to centre and hub boards, management and key personnel.
CEAI is supported through a variety of funds including
- The 2019 Regional Enterprise Development Fund
- The 2021 Regional Enterprise Transition Scheme Fund
- The 2022 Regional Enterprise Innovation Scoping Scheme Fund
- The 2022 Wheel Training Links Fund
- The 2021 ARISE Programme Fund
- The Erasmus Plus Programme Fund 2021 – 2027.
CEAI IS A NON-PROFIT ASSOCIATION and we are grateful to our Funders who continue to support our growth and ambition, including the organisations below.
We would also like to thank the members of our community whose annual contributions allow NACEC CLG to meet the match funding requirements of many grant providers which the Association benefits from.
The National Association of Community Enterprise Centres NACEC CLG
Registered Company No: 644493
The Community Enterprise Association Ireland CEAI
Unit 18, Meath Enterprise Centre
Co Meath C15TKX6