Nat O'Connor: In the spirit of Kennedy, asking us to think of what we can do for our country, President McAleese has launched a national competition: Your Country Your Call.
"Your Country, Your Call gives you the chance to share your creativity to give life to new industry, revitalise or revolutionise an existing market, or even change the way we do business entirely. It's not about creating new products. It's about creating something that will make a long term positive impact on the future of Ireland, its people, and its economy"
Rather aptly, the competition website has a 'ticking clock' with 72 days allowed for entries. The top 20 ideas will be listed and two final winners will receive €500,000 and other support to implement their ideas.
You can read more about it in the Examiner or Irish Times (which also summarised the competition rules).
This competition is an open door to give some progressive ideas a wider hearing...
Nat O’Connor is a member of the Institute for Research in Social Sciences (IRiSS) and a Lecturer of Public Policy and Public Management in the School of Criminology, Politics and Social Policy at Ulster University.
Previously Director of TASC, Nat also led the research team in Dublin’s Homeless Agency.
Nat holds a PhD in Political Science from Trinity College Dublin (2008) and an MA in Political Science and Social Policy form the University of Dundee (1998). Nat’s primary research interest is in how research-informed public policy can achieve social justice and human wellbeing. Nat’s work has focused on economic inequality, housing and homelessness, democratic accountability and public policy analysis. His PhD focused on public access to information as part of democratic policy making.