CeADAR appoints first woman chair of any Irish technology centreBlathnaid O’Deaon March 7, 2022 at 12:08 Silicon RepublicSilicon Republic

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Primark’s head of data and analytics Bronagh Riordan will be the first woman chair of any technology centre in Ireland following her appointment to lead Ireland’s centre for applied AI, CeADAR.

Prior to her current role as head of data and analytics at Primark, Riordan was director of the Deutsche Bank’s Global Analytics Centre of Excellence and head of data science for Car Trawler.

Commenting on her appointment, she said she was very “proud to be first female chair of any technology centre in Ireland,” adding that she hoped her appointment would increase “the visibility and representation of women in critical technical data and analytics roles” and push forward the “diversity and inclusion agenda in this space.”

CeADAR is one of eight technology centres across the country, as part of the technology centre programme supported by Enterprise Ireland and IDA Ireland.

Riordan’s appointment will see her lead CeADAR’s network of more than 90 member companies. As one of 30 digital innovation hubs in the EU focused on delivering AI services to industry, CeADAR aims to bring innovation in AI, machine learning and data analytics into companies to allow them to use the technology to build new products and services and give them competitive advantage.

“I am honoured to be taking up the mantle as Chair of the Cedar board and my role is to support the team at Cedar with regards to its overall vision and strategic direction and to provide strong leadership to the board. I want to supercharge the board and leverage the experience of each individual member to help drive the centre’s innovation agenda,” she said.

Riordan has been on CeADAR’s Industry Steering Board for the last three years prior to her appointment as chairperson. The Industry Steering Board supports the centre director in determining the overall vision and strategic direction for the organisation.

She has around two decades of experience as a data professional, including a strong results-driven consulting background.

“I have seen enormous change across industry over the 20 years I have been working in this space, and the speed of this change is only accelerating.

“With the utilisation of data as a response to the pandemic and the related boom in digital, there is an increasing realisation that data, analytics and artificial intelligence is at the heart of these changes,” she said adding that CeADAR was “perfectly placed to play a pivotal role in this changing world, in terms of supporting enterprises to achieve sustainable competitive advantage through applied AI, machine learning and data analytics.”

Bronagh Riordan.

CeADAR’s outgoing director Edward McDonnell said Riordan had brought “energy, enthusiasm and practical perspectives” to the Industry Steering Board since she joined three years ago.

“CeADAR actively pursues diversity in its workforce and we are delighted that such a high-calibre individual as Bronagh will chair the Board and be such a positive role model for everyone,” he concluded.

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