A Policy Review of the Geoscience Ireland business cluster by Indecon International Economic Consultants (Indecon) for Department of Environment, Climate and Communications was launched today.
Indecon was commissioned by the Department of Environment, Climate and Communications (DECC) to carry out an independent review for DECC and Geological Survey Ireland (GSI) of the Geoscience Ireland (GI) programme.
Overview of Geoscience Ireland Programme
Geoscience Ireland comprises of 42 companies, connecting Irish exports to commercial projects and partners in over 80 countries. It is overseen by the Geological Survey of Ireland/DECC and supported by the Department of Foreign Affairs; Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment; and Enterprise Ireland. ‘Geoscience’ or ‘Earth sciences’ supports activities such as geotourism and geoheritage; groundwater resources; education and research; extractive industries; infrastructure, energy, construction; and the minimization of the economic and social costs of natural hazards. The development of the geoscience sector can provide Ireland with long-term sustainable economic and social opportunities, which are important in a world facing the impacts of climate change.
Employment & Job Creation
The current 42 companies in Geoscience Ireland on average employed 4,577 full-time equivalent employees over the past three years.
An estimated 1,031 additional jobs were created by these Geoscience Ireland companies in the past five years.
As well as the impact of the Geoscience Ireland Programme on quantified financial and employment outcomes, a number of wider non-financial benefits have been assessed. These are listed below, together with the rating by GI members as to the significance of these benefits. The rating is the sum of the “very significant” and “significant” categories.
- the areas of networking and collaborative bidding, (72%)
- the impact on the profile of members and on brand awareness, (83%)
- the educational, innovation and R&D impacts, (64%)
- The links with government departments and inputs to policy.(67%)
Summary of Key Conclusions
- Geoscience Ireland is a successful example of an innovative Business Cluster.
- Employment in participating companies has expanded significantly in recent years.
- The Cluster has resulted in significant non-financial benefits for member companies.
- Between 2012 and 2021 total expenditure of €2.55 million has been allocated to the Geoscience business Cluster.
- The economic contribution of the Geoscience Cluster is reflected in annual turnover of €1.24 billion of participating companies and this has had wider economic impacts.
- In the past 5 years, an estimated 1,031 additional jobs were created by these Geoscience Ireland member companies.
Possible Areas for Future Development
- It is important that the economic potential of the geoscience sector is recognised.
- Committed long-term support for the geoscience sector should be considered and there would be benefits in focusing on business development supports.
- Consideration should be given to how the geoscience sector can continue to contribute to the National Climate Change Objectives.
- Engagement of Geoscience Ireland within the educational sector should continue to be developed.
You can access the review document here.