Dr Deirdre Lillis is a proven academic leader with over twenty in higher education. She has a track record of sustained innovation in professionally-oriented and internationalised curriculum development, in pioneering flexible delivery methods, in leading European projects and in proactive stakeholder engagement. She is currently Head of Computer Science at Technological University, Dublin (City Campus) in Ireland. She has extensive experience of developing internationalised, innovation and industry-oriented programmes to address enterprise needs. With multi-disciplinary educational qualifications including a PhD in Higher Education Management and an MSc in Computer Science, she undertakes research in strategic management, global entrepreneurial talent management, higher education policy and university-industry interactions. As principal investigator, she has secured European funding in highly competitive schemes including four funded projects as lead co-ordinator since 2015. She leads the HubLinked Knowledge Alliance of Global IT hubs and the HCI Convene programme, a €17.5m national investment in transforming university-enterprise engagement in the Dublin skills and innovation eco-system.
Prof. Suzi Jarvis graduated from the University of Oxford with a BA in Physics and a Kodak sponsored DPhil in Materials. This was followed by postdoctoral fellowships in Japan at the Joint Research Center for Atom Technology, Tsukuba, before moving on to a staff position at the Nanotechnology Research Institute, also in Tsukuba. During her time in Japan, Suzi co-founded the International Nanotribology Forum, whose mission is to promote the dissemination of nanotribology research with the inclusions of colleagues from developing nations. Suzi moved to Ireland in July 2002 with funding from Science Foundation Ireland to become a Research Professor in the School of Physics at Trinity College Dublin. During her time at Trinity she was one of the founding Principal Investigators at the Centre for Research and Adaptive Nanostructures and Nanodevices. Suzi is currently Professor of Biophysics in the School of Physics, University College Dublin and is based in the Conway Institute for Biomolecular and Biomedical Research. Suzi runs a multidisciplinary team ranging from electrical engineers to botanists. The underlying theme to all her projects is to understand, manipulate and ultimately utilize the function of biomolecules. The group has particular strengths in the development and application of novel atomic force microscopy techniques, especially in the liquid environment
Enterprise Partnership Lead
Prof. Anne Greene heads the Pharmaceutical Regulatory Science Team (PRST) in TU Dublin, where she is a senior lecturer and has spearheaded the development of several MSc and BSc Pharmaceutical Programmes since 1996. She has overseen the transition of 2 of them from face-2-face delivery to fully on-line, namely the MSc in Pharmaceutical Validation Technology and the BSc in the Manufacture of Medicinal products. She has supervised several industry based, remote students to PhD awards in areas of Quality Risk Management, Knowledge Management, Operational Excellence and PAT, and PQS.
Prior to embarking on an academic career, Anne worked at a senior level for several years in the pharmaceutical sector in Validation and Technical Management roles. In 2006, Anne took a 1-year sabbatical from DIT to take up the role of Training Director, for the newly established IDA funded National Institute of Bioprocessing Research and Training (NIBRT), based in the UCD campus. Anne has a BSc and PhD in Chemistry from UCD.
Enterprise Partnership Lead
Dr Brian Murphy B.A., Ph.D. [NUI], PGDip (University Teaching and Learning) is a Convene Enterprise Partnership Lead. He earned his doctorate in Modern Irish History from the School of History and Archives, University College Dublin. Prior to taking up his current position in Convene, Brian lectured in the School of Hospitality Management and Tourism in City Campus, Technological University Dublin, predominantly on the Access Foundation Programme and the International Foundation Programme, as well as serving as the School’s Erasmus Coordinator. Brian also previously worked as a Tutor in the Combined Departments of History in UCD.
Brian’s monograph Forgotten Patriot: Douglas Hyde and the Foundation of the Irish Presidency was published in 2016 by the Collins Press. He previously co-edited Brian Lenihan: In Calm and Crisis, the 2014 best-selling book on the public career of the former Minister for Finance. Brian’s latest book, From Whence I Came: The Kennedy Legacy, Ireland and America, co-edited with Professor Donnacha Ó Beacháin, was published in 2021 by the Irish Academic Press.
Brian has extensive public policy and enterprise experience. He worked previously as a speechwriter and policy advisor in the Houses of the Oireachtas and in the Department of the Taoiseach. He also ran his own consultancy company, providing strategic and communications advice to a range of high profile companies. Brian is currently a director of the Kennedy Summer School, New Ross, and a director of the John F. Kennedy Trust. Brian is passionate about sport, especially football, and he was a mentor on the Dublin Institute of Technology Elite Athlete Support Programme.
Enterprise Partnership Lead
Hugh McAtamney has taken over the role of Enterprise Partner on the convene project with specific responsibility for the Creative and Cultural sector and the Accredited Talent Development work package. Hugh has spent 8 years as Head of School of Media where he has cultivated links with the Screen Industry through developing post graduate programmes in Advanced Production, Creative Leaders, Game Design and an Apprenticeship in CG Technical Art. His role will see him work with Screen Skills Ireland to support their goal in providing new accredited pathways into the screen industry.
Previous to this role as Head of School he held the position of Head of Digital Media Development in the school of Media and lecturer in computer science and game design. He started his career as a Virtual Reality researcher in the Digital Media Centre in the Dublin Institute of Technology.
Enterprise Partnership Lead
Norah has designed innovative approaches to fostering entrepreneurial and innovative mindsets in Higher Education. Norah is an advocate of entrepreneurial and innovative practices across disciplines. She has designed programmes that foster transversal skills to future-proof high education and graduates. Most recently, TU Dublin and UCD Joint Professional Diploma in Transversal Skills and Global Innovation Teams – an immersive internship.
Norah has worked on many research projects, published papers and presented her work at international conferences. Highlights of Norah’s research include her Marie Curie-Sklodowska Research and Innovation Fellowship with European Commission for Horizon 2020 researching Entrepreneurial Diaspora in India and Brazil. Her Doctoral Study developed a model for cultivating entrepreneurial behaviour in underdeveloped communities. Norah is committed to finding new ways to bring business and underserved communities closer together.
Curate & Assess Work Package Coordinator
Kevin currently works with the Learning, Teaching & Technology Centre at TU Dublin (City Campus) as Strategic Projects Coordinator, having completed a three-year secondment as Digital Campus Architect (2017–20). Previously he was Head of eLearning Support & Development, and was seconded to the National Forum where he worked on the national digital roadmap for higher education and an associated sectoral infrastructure review. He holds a PhD in intellectual history from University College London (2000) and BA/MA from UCD. Before joining DIT in May 2002, his professional career spanned advertising and publishing in Dublin, New York and London.
Since joining TU Dublin in 2016 as an International and Research Project Officer for the School of Computer Science, William has managed the complete project of a range of international mobility projects and programmes within. During this time, William has effectively maintained and established a range of highly effective working relationships with key global partner universities and other stakeholders. Prior to joining TU Dublin, William held Higher Education positions in Melbourne, Australia and London, England.
William has a BA Hons Degree in Business Management Studies & Sport Science from St Mary’s University, London, and recently completed a MSc in Project Management from TU Dublin.
Strategic Partnerships Lead
Eleanor Kelly is Convene Strategic Partnerships Lead, based with UCD Innovation Academy. Eleanor has worked at the intersection of advocacy, policy and public affairs for over a decade, across the public, private, and non-profit sectors.
Prior to joining UCD Innovation Academy, she was Director of Regional Communications at the Open Society Foundations, a philanthropy founded by George Soros, active in over 120 countries with an annual budget of $1billion. As Director, Eleanor oversaw public advocacy strategies for programs including education and journalism, and geographic regions, including Europe, Asia, Africa and Latin America. In her role, Eleanor created and delivered a range of projects and campaigns on issues such as climate, access to education and inclusion, working with heads of state, international institutions, universities, civil society organisations and community groups.
Before joining the Open Society Foundations, Eleanor was a campaign manager at Chime Communications, a leading London public relations firm. She began her career as a research executive at the Members Library in the House of Commons, Westminster.
Eleanor is a graduate of Trinity College Dublin and the University of Cambridge, and recently completed a Women’s Leadership Programme at Said Business School at the University of Oxford. She speaks French.
Dr Nikita Chiu is Head of Research at the Innovation Academy, University College Dublin. She is named Ad Astra Distinguished Fellow in Robotic and Outer Space Governance in 2019 by the Space Engineering Research Center, and was selected as one of SSPI “20 under 35” future leaders to watch in the space and satellite industry.
Dr Chiu was the former Research Fellow in Robotics and Space Technologies at the Department of Politics and International Relations at the University of Oxford. She was also a former Research Affiliate at the Centre for the Study of Existential Risk at the University of Cambridge. Prior to a career in Technology Governance, Dr Chiu lectured on Foreign Policy and International Relations in Hong Kong and Tallinn, and was an Associate Lecturer in the UK. She currently contributes as a Mentor for the Space4Women Network—an initiative organized by the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) to support the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
Dr Chiu's ongoing research investigates the dynamics between technological advances and governance, with a focus on understanding the socio-economic, policy, and security impact brought by the increasing commercialization of robotics, quantum, and space technologies. An International Relations scholar by training, she read Technology Policy at St Edmund's College at the University of Cambridge, and holds a PhD from The Graduate Institute of International Studies in Geneva.
Technology Integration Manager
Jake Prest is the Technology Integration Manager for CONVENE. Jake’s mission is to ensure our students and partner programmes are ready to flourish in an age of disruption and transition. He plays a key role in the development of technical solutions for the complex problems that enterprise partners and higher education face today, while preparing for the challenges of tomorrow.
Prior to joining CONVENE, Jake was an Operations Manager at Amazon Web Services where he was responsible for a large team of engineers assisting customers build business critical web applications in the Cloud. He has built web and mobile applications for NASA and the U.S. Air Force, as well as surface applications for the National Football League. Jake earned a BSc in Computer Science from The College of William and Mary, and is pursuing a Master of Education in Educational Technology Leadership from University of Louisiana Monroe.
Creative Makers Facilitator/Maker Space Operations
William combines enterprise experience (sales, marketing, business development) with entrepreneurship, having co-founded and built up one of the first MakerSpaces in the USA (FabLab LLC), running it on a commercial basis. His specialities include digital design, 3D printing, laser-cutting, and rapid prototyping.
William was one of the founding members of the Nation of Makers, a collaboration of over 300 FabLabs and Maker/Hackerspaces that was established under the Obama Administration to bring manufacturing and STEM focus to the US.
He also has nearly two decades of retail channel buying, operations and product development experience at Costco Wholesale, the 3rd largest retailer in the world.
He holds a Bachelors of Business Administration with a Marketing focus and has recently completed MBA from NUI Galway.
Dr. Julie Dunne completed her PhD in Medicinal Chemistry in University College Dublin in 2002. She subsequently worked as a research and development chemist in the pharmaceutical company Ipsen, Dublin. She joined the School of Food Science and Environmental Health in 2003 as a lecturer in Chemistry with a focus on food and medicinal chemistry. She has held roles as work placement coordinator for students in food and pharmacy programmes and has expertise in work-related curriculum design. She was appointed Assistant Head of School in 2017. Julie holds a Postgraduate Certificate in Third Level Teaching and Learning, an MA in Higher Education, and was awarded University Teaching Fellowships (2010 and 2012), a President’s Teaching Excellence Award (2011), and is a member of two National Forum for Enhancement of Teaching and Learning DELTA award winning teams. Julie is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry, and a member of the Institute of Food Science and Technology of Ireland.
Prof. Declan is Head of the School of Chemical & Pharmaceutical Sciences. He was appointed Head of School in 2005 and is responsible for all aspects of the operation and strategic direction of the School. His is a Principal Investigator and also serves as Scientific Director of the Centre for Research in Engineering Surface Technology (CREST), an ISO 9001 accredited Research and Development Facility, incorporating the Enterprise Ireland funded Technology Gateway, based in TU Dublin. CREST works with over 60 Industry partners annually, including many indigenous SMEs.
He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry and a Fellow of the Institute of Chemistry in Ireland and previously was Vice-Chair of the Physical, Chemical & Mathematical Sciences Committee of the Royal Irish Academy. He was the recipient of the Institute of Chemistry of Ireland Annual Award for Chemistry (Eva Philbin Public Lecture Series) in 2019
Declan is leading on the development of an Academic Workload Model as part of the current TU Dublin Strategic Plan 2030 and represents TU Dublin on the All-Island Green Forum which is an initiative of Universities Ireland.
Dr. Ziene Mottiar is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Hospitality Management and Tourism in TU Dublin. Her research areas of interest are entrepreneurs and regional development and she has published extensively in top tourism journals in these areas. She has a particular interest in the growing emergence of social enterprises and in her involvement in Convene is working to encourage stronger relationships between this sector and the university.
Ziene has won a number of different teaching awards (DELTA, two teaching fellowships and teaching hero) and has particular interest in assisting students to develop their full potential, think critically, see issues from a broad range of perspectives, engage in authentic assessment and prepare themselves for the ‘real world’. This expertise will be harnessed by the Global Innovation Teams element of Convene.
Prof. John Behan Graduated from NUIG with an Honours Degree in Microbiology. He completed a Masters by Research in Industrial Microbiology at UCD. After Graduation, he was recruited to work in the Dublin facility of the Dutch Multinational Healthcare Company Organon Teknika Ltd., initially as Project Scientist, and subsequently as Head of their Diagnostic Manufacturing Division. His roles included Technology Transfer and responsibility for the overall running of the Department. During this time, he completed the Masters in Business Studies - Manufacturing Management on a part time basis in the world renowned Smurfit Business School in UCD Graduating with Honours.
After his time in industry, he joined Institute of Technology Tallaght Science Department Lecturing staff where responsibilities included industrial liaison, delivery and co-ordination of fulltime and part time programs. Currently and for the past 12 years he has been working as Head of the Science Department in the Institute of Technology Tallaght, now the Technological University Dublin, Tallaght Campus. Key roles include overall responsibility for the delivery of full and part time programs, industry training, International Program delivery and Research. In 2019, he was appointed as an Honorary Associated Professor by Nanjing Tech University, Nanjing China as recognition of his leadership role in the delivery of a joint pharmaceutical education programme between the two universities. He was recently in March 2021 appointed to the Senior Management role of Head of School of Science and Computing in TU Dublin, Tallaght Campus
Dr Rena (Catherine) Barry-Ryan is a Senior lecturer in Food product development in the Technological University Dublin (TU Dublin) since Feb 2002.
Rena is the Coursechair for BSc Food Innovation and BSc Brewing & Distilling.
She holds a BSc (Hons) in Industrial Microbiology from the National University of Ireland Dublin and was awarded her PhD in Food Technology by the University of Limerick for work on processing and packaging of ready-to-eat products.
Founder of the Food Innovation Lab (www.dit.ie/fil/) that supports Food & Drink Industry Research & Development.