The head of Google Ireland, Fionnuala Meehan, made the announcement of a new city fund this week, as the company celebrates their 15th year in the capital.
Whilst it has been a tumultuous few weeks for the company (mass walkouts took place to highlight discrimination and harassment issues), Meehan also placed emphasis on how she was unaware of any such negative activity taking place within the Dublin offices.
“We have a wonderful culturally diverse place to work here. But I think the thing that binds us together is respect,” explained Meehan, “And we talk about those values and respect from the moment somebody is hired“.
“We set very high standards for ourselves as a company, and I think it is clear from the upset and disappointment that we all felt that we need to do more and we need to listen more, and part of that was supporting the walkouts last week and listening to the types of ideas that those groups have.” – Fionnuala Meehan, Google Ireland
In a recent report from RTE, the cultural diversity of the Google Dublin offices was highlighted:
Currently there are 70 different nationalities among the Google workforce in the capital and 75 different languages spoken, because the company serves 100 markets across Europe, the Middle East and Africa from Dublin.
The fund being developed is the €1m Dublin Impact Challenge. In a statement, the company said: To mark Google’s 15th year in Dublin, Google.org is contributing €1M to 15 organisations dedicated to tackling important social issues and creating opportunity for Dublin. Local nonprofits and social enterprises are invited to submit innovative proposals and 15 finalists will receive €50,000 grants, training and volunteer support from Google.
The public will then have a chance to vote for their favourite idea. The winner of this public vote will receive an additional €50,000 of grant funding. Additionally, our panel of judges will select 4 winners from the 15 finalists, who will also receive an additional €50,000 of grant funding.” – Google.Org
Google.org has never run an Impact Challenge outside of the United States and Ireland will be the first international fund of its kind. Applications for the grants are now open.