Written answers

Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources

Knowledge Society Strategy

5:00 am

Photo of Jan O'SullivanJan O'Sullivan (Limerick East, Labour)
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Question 31: To ask the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources if his attention has been drawn to the Icelandic modern media initiative; his plans to introduce legislation similar to this initiative; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [45003/10]

Photo of Eamon RyanEamon Ryan (Minister, Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources; Dublin South, Green Party)
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I am aware of the Icelandic Modern Media Initiative. The initiative proposes to "task the government with finding ways to strengthen freedoms of expression and information freedom in Iceland, as well as providing strong protection for sources and whistleblowers". Iceland sees this, together with interconnection and server costs, as a key to attracting inward investment in the area of international press, media start-ups, human rights group and international data centres.

The increasing use of Internet technologies for social networking, publishing, content distribution and other commercial and social purposes presents challenges and opportunities for growth and is reflected in Iceland's initiative. In Ireland, these opportunities are being harnessed through the Government's "Technology Actions to Support the SMART Economy". This Knowledge Society Strategy paper published in July 2009, sets out a number of initiatives similar to those envisaged by Iceland including the International Content Services Centre (ICSC), Advanced Energy Efficient Data and Cloud Computing Centres; Smart Bay; Smart Electricity Grids and Networks; Work Flow; and the Exemplar Network.

Building on these initiatives, we will continue to explore innovative ways to build Ireland's SMART economy, by monitoring closely how developments in technology are impacting across the economy and society generally and engaging with the relevant stakeholders to ensure that public policy responds appropriately.

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