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  How effective is digitalisation as a tool for balanced regional development in Ireland?


   Research

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  Dr Roger Sweetman, Dr Amaya Vega  No more applications being accepted  Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project

The Postgraduate Research Programme in Innovation, Digitalisation, Enterprise and Society (IDEAS) offers 12 PhD research scholarships to commence in 2024. Each project will include an enterprise placement of minimum 12 weeks duration.

Project (IDEAS 3): How effective is digitalisation as a tool for balanced regional development in Ireland?

Digitalisation is key to EU, national and regional policy, as evidenced by the national digitalisation strategy, regional smart specialisation strategies and regional enterprise plans. However, despite the success of digitalisation at a national level, regional inequalities in digitalisation are well established. While there are many exciting policy initiatives to address this in Ireland, including the National Broadband Programme, Connected Hubs, and the European Digital Innovation Hubs, the regional imbalance is persistent and outward migration is driving slower population in the West and Northwest. Furthermore, the Northwest is considered a region of moderate innovation or a lagging region. While policy argues that digitalisation is essential to tackle regional imbalance, the evidence of its efficacy is scant. In fact, there are concerns that urban areas may benefit disproportionately from the production and delivery of digitalised services. Furthermore, while digitalisation can help some industries, a digital divide may exist between foundational industries, such as food and construction, that rural regions rely on and non-foundational businesses, leading to an even greater imbalance. The potential impact of digital technologies on less developed regions is an open question. Therefore, this study examines how effective digitalisation is as a tool for balanced regional development in Ireland by comparing its impact on the specific industries targeted in Ireland’s regional development plans for the North West.

Because the impact of digital technologies on less developed regions is an open question, this study aims to study the specific impact of digitalisation as a tool for balanced regional development in Ireland by examining its impact on the specific industries targeted in Ireland's regional development plans for the North West.

The objectives of this study are :

1.To gather evidence to demonstrate the efficacy of digitalisation as a tool for balanced regional development.

2.To examine the different economic impacts of digitalisation in rural and urban areas in the North West.

3. To compare and contrast how foundational and non-foundational industries are impacted by digitalisation.

Requirements/Qualifications

A minimum of 2.1 honours degree (Level 8) in a relevant discipline.

Project Duration:

48 months (PhD)

Preferred Location:

ATU Galway, Galway City Campus

Applications:

Application Form / Terms of Conditions can be obtained on the website: https://www.atu.ie/TU-RISE

The closing date for receipt of applications is 5pm, (GMT) Monday 29th April, 2024.

Only selected applicants will be called for an online interview (shortlisting may apply).

Business & Management (5) Economics (10)

Funding Notes

TU RISE is co-financed by the Government of Ireland and the European Union through the ERDF Southern, Eastern & Midland Regional Programme 2021- 27 and the Northern & Western Regional Programme 2021-27.
Funding for this Project includes:
• A student stipend (usually tax-exempt) valued at €22,000 per annum
• Annual waivers of postgraduate tuition fee
• Extensive research training programme
• Support for travel, consumables and dissemination expenses
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