Declan Kirrane

Director, ISC

Speaker Bio

Declan Kirrane, with over 25 years of experience, is a distinguished figure in global science policy and regulation. He is the Founder and Managing Director of ISC Intelligence in Science and holds prominent roles as the Chairman and Managing Director of both the Science Summit at the United Nations General Assembly and the Africa Europe Science Collaboration Platform (AERAP). He is also a co-founder of Medicines for Future (MAF). His advisory expertise extends to governments and industry worldwide.


In addition to these roles, Kirrane contributes significantly to the United Nations' efforts in science and technology. He is a member of the UN Technology Facilitation Mechanism STI4SDGs Roadmap Technical Group Working Party and leads the UN-EU working group focused on science investment in Africa. He also oversees the Committee on Africa's Voice in Artificial Intelligence Regulation and has chaired the Africa-USA Science Forum since 2020.


Kirrane's early career highlights include his tenure with the Financial Times as the launch editor of CORDIS, the European Commission’s research information service. He also edited the Commission’s Innovation and Technology Transfer Newsletter and CORDIS focus. His areas of expertise are diverse, encompassing ICT, health, defence, space, and EU R&D, among others. His work often centres on science policy evaluation methodologies and leveraging science investment for economic development and competitiveness.

Notably, he played a vital role in the South African government’s bid to host the Square Kilometre Array Radio Telescope (SKA), leading to a successful bid. He currently manages the Africa-Europe Science and Innovation Platform, AERAP, and is deeply involved in EU-Africa science and innovation relations.

Kirrane has been a driving force in integrating science more prominently within the United Nations General Assembly since 2010, culminating in the annual Science Summit. The latest edition, SSUNGA79, is scheduled for September 10-27, 2024