Republic of Ireland | TopMBA

With some high quality MBA programs and business schools, Ireland is beginning to attract attention from international as well as local MBA-aspirants. With a recent but impressive business school heritage, and a famously well-managed economy, Ireland also boasts a friendly and welcoming culture to study in. Vincent Dooley, Director of the MBA Program at Trinity College Dublin believes that Ireland has graduated into a country with a lot to offer the business leaders of the future.

Unique Investment Environment

Having developed from being a predominantly agricultural economy in the 1950s Ireland is now a thoroughly modern nation with well developed manufacturing and international services sectors and has the highest economic growth rate in the EU - hence the title 'The Celtic Tiger'. Ireland offers investors a stable, profitable, English-speaking base to service world markets. This is why almost 1,000 overseas companies have made Ireland their location of choice in sectors as diverse as engineering, information communications technologies, pharmaceuticals, medical technologies, financial and international services. Today, Ireland is home to companies such as Intel, Yahoo, Adobe, Microsoft, HP, Apple, Google, Amazon and Palm, to name just a few. In addition nine out of the ten biggest global pharmaceutical companies have located manufacturing plants in Ireland.

Ireland Productive Workforce

Ireland's competitiveness is based not on Irish tax benefits and costs alone, but on knowledge, innovation, flexibility, and connectedness - how everything works together.  Ireland has demonstrated the ability to adopt and adapt to change in a unique way that connects innovation, knowledge, people and enterprise to meet the fast-evolving demands of world markets. Ireland continues to win international investments from global corporations because it is seen as a business location where the workforce, as well as being highly qualified, has a unique capacity to improve, to innovate and to initiate new ideas, new processes and new ways of working that can make business more dynamic, more efficient and ultimately more profitable. Ireland has one of the youngest populations in Europe with over 36% under the age of 25 years. 

Ireland's unique population and age structure that has fuelled much of its recent prosperity will continue for the next 15 years with a key focus on education and research in the country. In a study of demographic trends, economists at NCB Stockbrokers forecast that projected population declines across much of Europe meant Ireland's already strong economy would look even more attractive in a European context over the next decade.  The population of the Republic will grow by 30% to over 5.3 million by 2020 and to 6 million by 2050.

The population between the ages of 15 and 64 will rise by 700,000 in the next 15 years. Sustained strong growth in the labour supply will maintain a capacity for growth in Ireland that will far outstrip that in other EU countries where the demographic outlook is much less favourable the report states. Skilled Workforce (Source Eurostat 2003) Science and Technology graduates per thousand in the 20-29 age group.

Bernard Collins, former Vice President of International Operations and Director of International Board with Boston Scientific, says: "Irish workers are not just good at accumulating knowledge. They are also very good at applying it. There is an eagerness to get things done right the first time, and to do it better, faster. The interest in continuous knowledge building and learning by the Irish workforce is a keen competitive advantage that enables them to be multifunctional across business processes."

Higher Education - Universities

Ireland has one of the best education systems in Europe (2004 IMD World Competitiveness Report) with a history rich in tradition and learning. The quality of the Irish education system is a major contributing factor to the rapid rate of economic growth Ireland has experienced over the last few decades. Irish higher education institutions are widely recognized for excellence in many disciplines. There are nine universities in Ireland - two in Northern Ireland and seven in the Republic. The University of Dublin, Trinity College (TCD), founded in 1592, is the oldest university in Ireland. The National University of Ireland (NUI) is a federal institute consisting of four constituent universities; University College Dublin, National University of Ireland Dublin; University College Cork, National University of Ireland Cork; National University of Ireland Galway and National University of Ireland Maynooth. NUI also has three recognised colleges: National College of Art and Design (NCAD), The Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI) and St. Angela's College of Education. The University of Limerick (UL) and Dublin City University (DCU) are our newest universities and were founded in 1989. The two universities in Northern Ireland are: the University of Ulster (UU) and the Queen's University of Belfast (QUB). In addition to offering degrees at Bachelors, Masters and Doctorate levels, over a full range of disciplines, the universities and colleges also undertake research in many areas.

Higher Education - International Dimension

Ireland is an increasingly popular destination for students from all over the world. The friendliness and hospitality for which Irish people are renowned contribute to the ease with which overseas students adapt to the way of life and student life in particular. The educated workforce produced in Ireland by the education system has been a key factor in attracting international investment to the country and in the growth of the modern technological industries which have helped make Ireland one of the fastest-growing economies in the world.

The international dimension of education is important in Ireland, which has one of the most trade dependant economies in the world. The Irish government has invested in the internationalization of the education system, both to promote the international activities and linkages of its colleges and to encourage students from overseas countries to study in Ireland. The number of international students visiting Ireland is increasing each year and students from all over the world are taking advantage of the higher education standard in Ireland coupled with the unique cultural experience. Overseas students receive a quality education in a friendly environment. They in turn enrich the educational experience of our own students and bring an international dimension to our campuses. Lifelong friendships and networks are formed between Irish and overseas students which later enhance the cultural and trade relationships between nations. Higher education in Ireland is benchmarked against the highest international standards and the employment market for graduates is a global one.