The Ireland Chapter of Project Management Institute (PMI) will hold its largest national conference to date on May 4th at the Aviva Stadium. With the theme, Challenge in Changing Times, the conference will see some of the country’s top experts in project leadership discuss the uncertainty of today’s economy, specifically regarding Britain’s exit from the European Union.


Announced today, the speakers include Cathriona Hallahan, the managing director of Microsoft Irelandwho will speak on Leadership in Changing Timesand Féilim Harvey, a partner in PwC heading up their Portfolio and Programme Management Practice in Ireland.


Keynote speaker at the national conference will be GAA legend Jim McGuinness, an All-Ireland winning Gaelic footballer who now coaches at Celtic FC. Also speaking will be head of Portfolio Management Office at Three Ireland, Jackie Glynn; and PMO leader with the IT Alliance Group, Dermot Hore.


Ireland Chapter of PMI President Niall Murphy said: “Knowing the huge implications ahead for Irish businesses – from Brexit to the protectionist trade policies in the US –  the 2017 conference will examine the need for businesses to draw on the strategic competence of project management.


“It’s clear that without effective leadership, the uncharted territory that is Brexit has the potential to cause serious damage for unprepared businesses. Currently, the PMI is forecasting a 12% year-on-year growth in the number of project managers. This equates to approximately 20,000 additional project managers in Ireland by the end of 2020. With the current geopolitical climate, we predict that even at this level of growth, this increase will fall short of requirements, as the need for experienced, strategic project management is now greater than ever.”


Speaking ahead of the conference Féilim Harvey stated: “With Brexit, the new political leadership in the US, and other geopolitical challenges, there is greater uncertainty in the world of business. In particular, we see Brexit creating uncertainty around exchange rates, supply chain, access to markets and, for certain financial services organisations, continuing access to the Single Market. We are heading into extremely turbulent times.

“However, PwC’s 2017 Global CEO Survey revealed that three-quarters of business leaders are struggling to recruit people with leadership skills. Managing Brexit, and all the geopolitical and economic uncertainties, will require excellent leadership involving real collaboration, excellent communication and teamwork across all business functions. Having the appropriate leadership skills, and gearing up to have the capability to deliver significant programmes of work, will be critical to a successful outcome.”


Niall Murphy added: “Our panel of conference speakers represent some of the best in the industry, with dynamic and inspiring insights into project management within their respective industries. This will be a forum for these high-level figures to openly discuss and debate the challenges and the opportunities in these changing times.”


Membership of the Ireland Chapter of PMI is almost 1,200 and currently there are over 50,000 employed in project management across Ireland, in sectors such as IT, public sector, construction, pharmaceuticals and manufacturing.


Early bird registration is now open at, at a special ticket price of €140 for members and €195 for non-members.


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