Professor Noel O’Connor appointed CEO of the Insight SFI Research Centre for Data Analytics

Submitted on Wednesday, 18/11/2020

Professor Noel O’Connor of the School of Electronic Engineering at Dublin City University has been appointed CEO of Ireland’s largest data research centre, the Insight SFI Research Centre for Data Analytics. Professor O’Connor has been acting as interim CEO since Science Foundation Ireland’s announcement of a second phase, underpinned by €49m in support, for the Insight SFI Centre.

Established in 2013 with an initial state investment of €80m, Insight SFI Centre’s 450 researchers work across a range of foundational and applied research programmes in artificial intelligence and data science, including projects in health and human performance, smart cities, e-government and smart industry. The Centre has over 40 industrial partners and is involved in multiple EU and global research collaborations.

Professor O’Connor will lead an ambitious research programme for Insight phase 2. He was previously Academic Director of DCU’s Research and Enterprise Hub on Information Technology and the Digital Society, with the responsibility of coordinating multi-disciplinary ICT-related research across the university.  The focus of Professor O’Connor’s research is in multimedia content analysis, computer vision, machine learning, information fusion and multi-modal analysis for applications insecurity/safety, autonomous vehicles, medical imaging, IoT and smart cities, multimedia content-based retrieval, and environmental monitoring. Speaking on this week’s Insight Podcast, Professor O’Connor notes his pride in Insight’s performance during a very challenging year, and looks forward to his mission to lead Insight 2.

‘Ultimately, it is science that is going to beat this pandemic and I am very proud of Insight’s contribution to the national and global research effort this year.  Our researchers have stepped up to contribute to a range of research programmes involving IMAG (the epidemiological modelling group), the HSE and the Department of Health. ‘The pandemic has been a catalysing factor that has allowed us to focus on a grand challenge of our time. The pandemic will shape Insight as it will the world: the response I have seen from Insight researchers, their eagerness to collaborate across sites and disciplines, gives me great confidence for Insight 2 and the ambitious research programme we have devised.”


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