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About the Awards

We are delighted to announce the .IE Digital Town Awards 2021 which are open to towns of various sizes across Ireland. This is the first pillar of activity under .IE Digital Town which has been developed to address digital enhancement and adoption in Ireland.

The .IE Digital Town Awards promote awareness, knowledge, use and understanding of digital in Ireland by its citizens, businesses and communities. It also highlights the benefits and possibilities of digital and celebrates the digital achievements of local towns, big and small.

There will be 14 awards in a number of categories with a total prize fund of €100,000 in 2021.

11 of the awards will be for digital projects and in addition there will be two special Award categories – Digital Changemaker and Digital Rising Star, which will chosen by an independent judging panel. We are also delighted to announce the totally unique Digital Hero Award. This will be a person in your community who is an unsung hero, who works tirelessly on initiatives to promote the digital enhancement of the town. There will be a special prize of €3,000 for this award.

Applicants will be asked to provide information on their Digital Vision and Digital Projects underway. The Award Categories are listed below. Entry to the awards is free.

The Covid-19 pandemic has had an enormous impact on our country.  Digital offers the opportunity to create new ways of doing things, promote innovation and breathe new life into local communities, making them more attractive places to live and work as well as contributing to a more sustainable future.

Why should you enter?

This is an ideal opportunity to raise the profile of your town, to help retain existing and attract new workers and residents to your town.  A digitally advanced town can help attract investment from new employers from other areas nationally or internationally. It can also encourage additional investment from existing employers and support a start-up community. The .IE Digital Town Awards also create a great sense of pride in a town for residents and act as a catalyst for creating positive change for all.

Entry to the Awards is free.

Towns can enter digital projects demonstrating how digital approaches and projects have contributed to the betterment of the town and the wider town community. Projects can relate to enhancements in areas such as health, education, tourism, business, community, social entrepreneurship & innovation, culture & the arts, population growth, employment opportunities, sport, local government, citizen involvement & inclusion, transport. Please see some examples of digital projects for reference.

Judging criteria: Our independent judging panel will award points in two main areas applicants provide information on – Digital Vision and Digital Projects. Read full details on the judging criteria.

Applications close at 5pm on Friday 30th April 2021. Terms and conditions apply.

LISTEN: The .IE Digital Town Awards explained – Irish Tech News Podcast

Need help with your application?

Request a chat to discuss your application. Email omccutcheon@weare.ie with your contact details and we will call you back within 24 hours.

Timeline for the Awards

 

  • Application phase: Monday 22nd March – Friday 30th April 2021.
  • Judging: Monday 3rd May – Friday 21st May 2021. You can read more about our judges and the judging criteria.
  • Shortlist announced: w/c 24th May 2021.
  • Awards ceremony: w/c 10th June 2021.

Award Categories

CATEGORY WINNERS PRIZES
Small town – (up to 2,500) 1 Winner
1 Runner up
€9,000
€5,000
Medium town –  (2,500 – 5,000) 1 Winner
1 Runner up
€9,000
€5,000
Large town –   (5,000 – 10,000) 1 Winner
1 Runner up
€9,000
€5,000
Large town – (10,000+) 1 Winner
1 Runner up
€9,000
€5,000
Urban town1 – (up to 30,000) 1 Winner
1 Runner up
€9,000
€5,000
Digital Changemaker 1 Winner €8,500
Digital Rising Star 1 Winner €8,500
Digital Hero 1 Winner €3,000
Overall Winner 1 Winner €10,000
  • Overall winner will be selected from the 5 town winners and will win both the town prize (€9k) and the overall winner prize (€10k) – total for Overall Winner will be €19k
  • The Digital Rising Star will be a town that is an emerging talent in the area of digital and will demonstrate the potential to be a future digital leader.
  • The Digital Changemaker will be a town that demonstrates that they have taken creative digital action to create change and new ways of doing things to effect positive impacts for the whole community.
  • Digital Hero Award. This will be someone in your community who is an unsung hero, who works tirelessly on initiatives to promote the digital enhancement of the town or a group in the town.
  • Entries will be evaluated by an independent panel of digital experts.  The decision of the adjudication panel will be final.
  • 1An urban town is a distinct town within larger cities.

FAQs

The .IE Digital Town Awards promote awareness, knowledge, use and understanding of digital technologies in Ireland by its citizens, businesses and communities. It also highlights the benefits and possibilities of digital and celebrates the digital achievements of towns across Ireland.

As the national registry for .ie the ccTLD (country code top level domain) for Ireland we are also advocates for all things digital and encourage the uptake and use of internet and digital technologies for businesses, citizens and communities.

Small towns up to 2,500 inhabitants, medium towns between 2,500 – 5,000, large towns of 5,000-10,000 inhabitants and larger towns of 10,000+ inhabitants. Cities are excluded but distinct urban towns within cities are allowed up to 30,000 in population.

Yes, if a town has several qualifying digital projects they can be entered as separate projects.

An urban town is one that has a distinct identity within a larger urban area, for example, Malahide in Dublin or Salthill in Galway.

An active digital committee or group which encompasses the interests of the whole town and community is welcome to apply.

See the full list of judges here and the judging criteria is outlined here

There is a total of €100,000 in the prize fund. 5 towns will win a best in category prize of €9,000 with 5 runners-up getting €5,000 each. The overall winner for 2021 will be taken from one of the 5 category winners and will receive an additional €10,000. We will also have two special awards for Digital Rising Star and Digital Changemaker, each being awarded €8,500. There will be an award of €3,000 for the Digital Hero winner.

  • Application phase: Monday 22nd March – Friday 30th April 2021.
  • Judging: Monday 3rd May – Friday 21st May 2021. You can read more about our judges and the judging criteria.
  • Shortlist announced: w/c 24th May 2021.
  • Awards ceremony: w/c 10th June 2021.

The prize money is intended to help towns develop digitally.  This could include building a new town website, launching an App, developing a digital hub/coworking space, investing in digital signage, providing digital training and workshops etc.

A bank account is important for transparency and it must be a company, group or local council account and not a personal account.

All terms and conditions can be viewed here.