Six minutes to talk for Ireland and create a new world
INNOVATION PROFILE: Innovation Dublin: AMONG THE MOST interesting and inspiring events at this year’s Innovation Dublin festival is likely to be the series of DublinTalks being run in conjunction with the Royal Irish Academy (RIA) and Dublin City of Science.
The highly unusual format features six well know speakers addressing the audience for six minutes on their big innovative idea without the aid of slides, notes or even a podium.
Speakers include Prof John Crown, behavioural economist Pete Lunn of the Economic and Social Research Institute, John Dunne of telecommunications networking company Intune Networks, Equinome’s Emmiline Hill, who discovered the “speed gene” in horses, and award-winning TCD immunologist Professor Luke O’Neill. The talks take place this evening and on October 15th in the Sugar Club.
“We want to showcase inspiring ideas,” says Pauric Dempsey of the RIA. “People keep talking about the Irish knowledge society but who and what is it? We came up with the idea of DublinTalks to showcase the people who are the knowledge society. We wanted to answer the questions that people are asking: Who are these great thinkers? What are they doing? We want to showcase the best thinking and best ideas out there at the moment.”
The events will resemble the TED (technology, entertainment and design) talks, which have been taking place internationally for some years, in that they are devoted to “ideas worth spreading” and will be made available free on the web.
“TED talks can be quite long, around 18 minutes,” Dempsey says. “Speakers at DublinTalks will have just six minutes without the aid of slides or anything to get their ideas across. They will be telling the audience what they are working on in Ireland and why it is important. It is a very immediate format and will be much more compelling than a longer presentation.”
The idea for DublinTalks arose out of an event the RIA put on at last year’s Innovation Dublin festival.
“We hosted a panel discussion on what’s smart about Ireland’s smart economy and that went very well. We decided to look at how we could evolve that. There is so much going on in terms of innovation in Ireland, there are so many great stories out there but nobody is really talking about them.
“DublinTalks is about getting the people behind these stories to tell them and then putting that up on the web to allow people to hear about them at home and internationally.”
One of the big ideas being presented at tonight’s event is how behavioural economics can be used to help companies to sell products and governments to sell policies. “I study economic and consumer decision making,” says Lunn. “What I want to get across is how the science of consumer behaviour is evolving and advancing, and how behavioural psychology techniques can be used to influence consumer decision making.”