Gary O’Meara works for a local government organization called Meath Enterprise which is a very large community hub embedded in their community. They also have Kells tech hub which is smaller with more of a focus on technology, and Gary is part of an association called the National Association of Community Enterprise Centers in Ireland.
Short term, the challenges presented by COVID have been reconfiguring spaces and bringing in new technology to support hubs and their clients; then the medium to longer term opportunities in terms of future work, blended working, remote working and how they can facilitate that.
With multinationals, the public sector and even colleges working remotely, COVID has accelerated the need for quality standards, technology and the adoption and digitization of these hubs and how they operate. COVID presents an opportunity for these hubs to be at the center of a national regional development program where we can work with these remote workers, breathing life and bringing money and bringing energy back into local communities.
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This Community Journalism project and publication is part of the NGI Forward initiative. Launched by the European Commission in the autumn of 2016, NGI stands for Next Generation Internet. It has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 825652 from 2019-2021. You can learn more about the initiative and our involvement in it at https://ngi.edgeryders.eu
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