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Wednesday | 22nd May 2024

Amber Desprets, Smart Dún Laoghaire – Innovation and Engagement Are Keys to Driving Progress in Any Community

04. 04. 2023

Amber Desprets

Amber Desprets, Innovation & Engagement Lead at Smart Dún Laoghaire

As part of April’s ‘Why Choose Dun Laoghaire’ SHOWCASE we were delighted to talk with Amber about her work in Dún Laoghaire.

Innovation and engagement are keys to driving progress in any community, and that’s exactly what Smart Dun Laoghaire, one of Dublin’s designated smart districts, is all about. In our recent interview with the Innovation and Engagement Lead at Smart Dun Laoghaire, Amber Desprets, we spoke about her role and the stakeholders involved in their work.

Amber is responsible for all things innovation and engagement and has set up a new engagement program called Trend Hunters, which focuses on futurism. The programme collaborates with local students in the town to teach them innovation, creativity, and trend-watching skills. The program also involves a future-focused project that identifies current trends and how they might affect the future. This project is created with citizens and for citizens and Amber hopes that it will be enough for an inclusive future and transforming Dun Laoghaire into an innovative community.

The key stakeholder involved in this project is the Dun Laoghaire Further Education Institute. It had 12 students from science, marketing, and architecture participating in the programme.

The motivation behind Amber’s work comes from the impact it has on citizens. As a student of innovation management, she understands the importance of innovation and trend-watching in shaping the future. Although trend watching is not something many people are familiar with, she hopes that with raising awareness many more people in the community will find it useful. Trend watching as a skill that one could compare to having an extra set of eyes and very useful to seeing and implementing projects that work for the future of our town.

In the coming year, she hopes to collaborate with industry partners, organize the Trend Hunters programme again, and deploy innovation related projects that keep emerging trends in mind but also resonate with our community.

Dun Laoghaire Town, a home to future focussed students

When asked about what she loves about Dún Laoghaire, Amber mentioned the mindset of the students of this generation which are learning key skills within the town, a generation which is curious, critical, and has a voice of its own. Their feedback and ideas will be integral to shaping the future of our community. As Amber outlined, the younger generation are very willing and they are more sophisticated in their thinking than we might expect. They know what’s going on around them and, for example, they would like to see more businesses coming to our town as they are aware of the long term impact that can have on the whole society.

As for Dún Laoghaire itself, Amber didn’t know much about it before she started her job at Smart Dun Laoghaire, as she just moved from London. However, she got to like our town very much and especially her walks on the pier during her lunch time. She finds them very relaxing and a great way to stay productive.

The Smart Dun Laoghaire team is always looking for new ways to engage the community and promote innovation in the town. Learn more about Smart Dun Laoghaire here.