A BALBRIGGAN-based reporter has claimed top prize in the second annual Science and Technology Journalism Awards and will now be winging his way to New York for his troubles.
Gerry Byrne whose award-winning article was published in the New Scientist magazine in Spring of this year and centred on two features on major aircraft incidents and their causes.
Minister for Science, Technology and Commerce Noel Treacy was on hand to present the awards.
They were co-sponsored by IBM Ireland Ltd and run as an integral part of the Science Technology and Innovation (STI) Awareness Programme, managed by Forfás on behalf of the Office and Science and Technology.
The winners were selected by a panel of judges chaired by Pat Kenny of RTÉ, who also acted as MC at the ceremony.
Each of three winners in different categories received valuable hi-fi equipment.
Mr Byrne was presented with a trip for two to New York.
The articles were described by the judges as follows: ‘From opening paragraphs that grab our attention to final questions that hang in the air, these are quite simply enthralling accounts of how technology can be both killer and saviours in our world.
‘Weaving drama and sound scientific understanding together with flair and integrity, these articles inform and educate in the best tradition of storytelling.
‘Scientific journalism at its sharpest,’ it concluded.
IBM MD William Burgess said: ‘The number of outlets for technology and science coverage is increasing and the journalist’s unique ability to communicate the important issues involved, and to cut through the jargon, is vitally important to keep Irish businesses alert to discoveries, inventions and products that are shaping our world today.’
Forfás chief executive John travers said the work of journalists in bridging the gap between advances in science and technology and the understanding by citizens of the implications of these developers was of crucial importance.