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Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Dermot Desmond at the Change Nation event at Dublin Castle yesterday

Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Dermot Desmond at the Change Nation event at Dublin Castle yesterday

Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Dermot Desmond at the Change Nation event at Dublin Castle yesterday

While one Taoiseach's experiences in Dublin Castle dominated the news, the current Taoiseach was in the same venue yesterday, but for a much happier occasion -- the launch of Change Nation.

This international think-tank of the world's top social entrepreneurs brought more than 50 innovators into Dublin for three days of debate and discussion, and included a panel session with former President Mary Robinson and businessman Dermot Desmond.

The theme of the think-tank was to examine what the organisation calls '50 Proven Solutions' in the areas of education, healthcare, the environment, economic development, inclusion and civic participation.

And given Ireland's severe difficulties in some of these areas -- particularly with more than 460,000 people on the live register -- Enda Kenny spent time talking to some of the overseas entrepreneurs, including Bill Drayton, founder of Get America Working, which aims to create 40 million new jobs in the US by changing the tax structure.

Mr Kenny also met with Irish entrepreneur James Whelton (19), who created Coder Dojo, a not-for-profit network for computer clubs which, after six months, is expanding rapidly around the globe.

Change Nation, which concludes today, is hosted by social entrepreneurs' association Ashoka, which has 3,000 members worldwide.

Over the three days, 500 one-to-one meetings are taking place between innovators, philanthropists, and business and political leaders.

Irish Independent