DCMS blog

London Tech Week 2019: Encouraging more talent into the tech sector

Simon Bailie


Simon Bailie

CEO of Digital DNA

The tech scene in Northern Ireland is as diverse and far-reaching as ever and Digital DNA is the premier events bringing people from across the tech sector together.

With our world-renowned cybersecurity centre at CSIT, the UK’s Innovation and Knowledge Centre for secure information technologies, and U.S. firms such as Rapdi7 and Proofpoint already in place, coupled with the recent announcement that Queen’s University Belfast will be offering 40 full scholarships to its specialist cybersecurity MSc programme, as well as SaltDNA’s admittance onto Tech Nation’s cyber security scale-up programme, it’s abundantly clear that the strength of NI’s cyber security sector is on an increasingly upward trajectory.

 Cementing Norther Ireland’s tech reputation

Northern Ireland’s reputation as a global technology hub has been further cemented thanks to the commitment from the professional services sector. The largest of the firms here, PwC NI, is creating one of the city centre’s most innovative digital spaces in its new £70 million HQ – Merchant Square – which will be home to 3,000 people next year.

The global firm’s confidence in the local team is evident with PwC’s blockchain capabilities being led by the team in Belfast. With an approach based on innovating through collaboration and design-thinking, it’s inspiring to see what some perceive as a traditional industry diversify with great success.

Game-changing city deal 

The impact of the Belfast City Region Deal will be game-changing not only for the tech scene, but for the wider economy as a whole. With £350million being invested into the Belfast Region by the UK Government over the next 15 years, one of the core aspects within it surrounds innovation and the digital space. Initial plans include the creation of global centres of excellence in partnership with enhanced digital capability and connectivity. 

Fit for the future 

Technology is transforming all of our everyday work and social lives. It’s essential to encourage more talent to get into the industry, which in turn ultimately helps to foster inclusive and sectoral growth.


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