Dáil debates

Wednesday, 13 October 2021

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions

Research and Development

11:10 am

Photo of Denis NaughtenDenis Naughten (Roscommon-Galway, Independent) | Oireachtas source

We all accept that the field of science and technology is playing an increasing role in our lives, homes, work and even leisure activities. Yet, there remains a poor public awareness of science and opportunities in that regard in Ireland for our people and our economy. I accept that the Creating Our Future initiative is a positive development in addressing that aspect. We also need a forum, however, to enable the facts concerning scientific development to be brought into the public domain and to improve public understanding of complex issues such as Covid-19, vaccinations, methane and climate science and wireless communications technology. One of the major issues with which we as a Parliament must now grapple is the ownership of publicly-sourced data, especially medical data. There is significant potential within our health service in that regard. While these matters are being dealt with in a piecemeal manner by sectoral committees, there is no central forum imbued with the skill set to tease out issues such as these with the researchers, the specialists and expert technical advice in these areas.


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