Tom Flynn
Q-Validus to Participate in Upcoming European Security Research Big Data Conference in Dublin

Q-Validus is delighted to announce that it will participate at the upcoming European Security Research conference, which takes place in Malahide, Co. Dublin, from 4 to 6 November 2015.

The conference, which has a ‘Big Data’ focus, will provide an opportunity for engagement with experts from different backgrounds and understandings in the area of security research, including standardization, policy making, crisis and emergency first responder perspective and the scientific and research community perspective.

Registrations are now being accepted for the European Security Research event – The Next Wave – at

The conference will focus on four challenging themes;

  • Strengthening Crisis and Emergency Management Response
  • Future Crisis Management Standardisation
  • Cyber Security
  • Big Data

The conference includes speakers from the European Commission, Alcatel-Lucent, Siemens, Grant Thornton, Telecommunications Software & Systems Group (TSSG), located in the Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT), TNO, Centre for Secure Information Technologies and the University of Stuttgart amongst others.

Tom Flynn, Project Manager, Q-Validus, (AquaSmart Big Data for Aquaculture Project), is the Chairperson for the European Security Research 2015 conference.

The conference will also feature high-level plenary debates for each of the above themes as well as breakout sessions for network interactions and follow up discussions.

During the conference Zoltán Székely, a senior Hungarian police officer and assistant lecturer at the Hungarian National University of Public Service, will deliver a keynote address on the ‘End-User role for Law Enforcement Agencies – on the Hungarian National Police.’

Speaking in advance of the event, Tom Flynn said, “This 3-day European Security Research conference in Dublin presents a tremendous opportunity for engagement with experts from different backgrounds and understandings in the area of European security, research and future needs.”



23 Sept 2015

DD and TF at Nexus

Dudley Dolan and Tom Flynn, Q-Validus

Q-Validus assist AquaSmart in CEN workshop agreement

Q-Validus is delighted to be leading the standardisation process within the AquaSmart project.   AquaSmart is about enhancing innovation capacity within the aquaculture sector, by helping companies to transform captured data into knowledge and use this knowledge to dramatically improve performance. The project also supports production benchmarking through access to global data and make predictive analysis a reality for the fish farmers. AquaSmart addresses actual problems that aquaculture producers face and is run by a skilled and experienced consortium. The project will deliver a cloud based tool aimed helping fish farmers to:

  • Lower production costs.
  • Improve profitability.
  • Improve operational efficiency.
  • Carry out business in a sustainable, environmentally friendly way.

One of the important aspects that will come from the project is a draft CEN workshop agreement standard on Big Data for the aquaculture industry. The key objective of the drafting of the standard is to create a Guidance document that aids in the uniform understanding and promotes reference implementations of Big Data based solutions.

Q-Validus as part of the AquaSmart Consortium will participate at the ESRDublin2015 event ( and will hold a world café session to meet with interested parties in this area and advance the work of the consortium and the project.

March 2015

Q-Validus Secures €370,000 Funding as Part of Horizon 2020 Aquaculture Project 

30 March 2015 – Q-Validus, today announced that it has secured €370,000 in funding, over 2-years, as part of a €3.1 million AquaSmart project being funded through the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 Programme.

The focus of the AquaSmart project is to enhance the innovation capacity within the aquaculture sector by helping companies to transform captured data into knowledge, and by sharing this knowledge to improve efficiency, increase profitability and carry out business in a sustainable, environmentally friendly way.

AquaSmart’s objective is to strengthen the competitiveness and growth potential of European aquaculture production companies by providing the necessary tools to turn the large volumes of heterogeneous aquaculture data into knowledge, by enabling companies to access and analyse global open data, and by extracting the knowledge from current data and experiences of the sector.

Q-Validus, which is headquartered at NexusUCD, the Industry Partnership Centre, at University College Dublin will deliver the quality assurance aspects of the AquaSmart project.  This includes data dissemination and engagement of participants across the sector as well as the establishment of a ‘Big Data’ fish farm analytics standard in line with the CEN (European Committee for Standardization) Workshop Agreement protocols.

Garry Cleere, Managing Director, Q-Validus said, “Q-Validus is delighted to part of this exciting project which aims to improve the efficiency and profitability of fish farm businesses across Europe, while reducing their environmental impact, increasing production and generating new and sustainable jobs. The development of a fish farm analytics standard led by Q-Validus will help companies to better estimate daily biomass, optimise feeding rates and management practices. This will improve the FCR (Feed Conversion Rate), which means less feed will be provided to the fish and therefore, less organic material and energy are consumed for the production of the feed, which will also have a further positive impact on the environment.”

Research institutes participating in the consortium will act as core technology suppliers and will transfer computing and data analytics solutions to the aquaculture stakeholders working within the project consortium.

Dudley Dolan, Chairman, Q-Validus said, “A multi-lingual eTraining support programme will be developed as part of the AquaSmart project, to assure that stakeholders receive the appropriate training and help ensure that technological innovations developed as part of the project will be transferable and sustainable.”

Tom Flynn Consultants, specialists in proposal research and implementation for Horizon 2020, provided support to Q-Validus in securing funding for the AquaSmart project.

The AquaSmart project is led by TSSG (Telecommunications Software and Systems Group), Waterford Institute of Technology.

February 2015

Go Digital – From Paper to Online

 The latest Q-Validus breakfast briefing took place on 24th Feb in the Royal College of Physicians Ireland with a focus on migrating academic assessments from a paper-based to an online format.

Garry Cleere, Managing Director of Q-Validus, kicked off the event by explaining how the Q-Validus methodology provides a holistic approach for education providers to guide them through each step of their move to digital delivery of existing or new programme content.

Guest speaker Romana Moss of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, UK, outlined how the college moved their examination delivery from paper to online using the Surpass computer-based assessment system.  Romana gave our audience an interesting insight into the rationale for the project, the internal planning process, getting support of all stakeholders and her experience in going to market to select an test engine to suit the RCPCH exam formats. The key messages to Academic Institutes considering a similar project were to allow sufficient time to resolve each issue completely and to communicate the projects progress to all parties as it goes along.  The RCPCH are now able to offer online examination to their 10,000+ candidates per annum with instant results while also having access to a wealth of delivery data which will inform future operational improvements.

October 2014

Go Digital, Go Global

The first in this series of business briefings took place in Dublin on October 17th, 2014 and was well attended by representatives from many prominent Professional Institutes and Third Level Colleges.

The aim of the event was to share how the Q-Validus process can be used to define an educational syllabus and develop a programme for online dissemination of learning to a wider audience. The session also showcased the successful experience of our client, The Digital Marketing Institute and concluded with a demonstration of how to build an online assessment system by the BTL Group.

Chairman of Q-Validus, Dudley Dolan, set the scene referring to the trends now emerging across Europe, at all levels of education, where the digital platform is increasingly used to enhance the learning experience and extend student engagement across borders.  Garry Cleere (Managing Director) then demonstrated how the Q-Validus methodology can be applied to develop a structured syllabus which is e-learning ready and suitable to meet the needs of external certification and online assessment.

Ian Dodson, Co-Founder and Director of The Digital Marketing Institute provided a case study describing how his business had engaged with Q-Validus to formalise a Diploma programme in Digital Marketing, which had been delivered successfully in Ireland and the UK, but following the development of a structured syllabus, suite of delivery materials and validated online assessment, the programme could then also be licenced to other education providers allowing for the business to scale internationally.

The final presentation was given by online examination provider, BTL Group, who demonstrated how their system allows the education provider to build and administer their exams online using a variety of item formats. A lively debate on the topic of blended learning and assessment concluded the morning.

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