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Northern Ireland Governor appointed to the British Film Institute Board

Declan Keeney

Appointed from 27 June 2023 until 26 June 2027.

Declan Keeney PhD, FRSA is a Professor (Chair) of Screen Technologies & Innovation at Ulster University and Director of the Ulster Screen Academy. He is an expert advisor on the screen industry’s future workforce needs and in emerging screen technologies such as real-time VFX workflows. Declan recently co-founded Studio Ulster, in Northern Ireland, a £72-million large-scale commercial virtual production and real-time visual effects studio in partnership with Belfast Harbour Studios, Northern Ireland Screen and Ulster University.

Declan is a Fellow of The Royal Society of Arts and a member of the British Council’s Arts and the Creative Economy Advisory Group. His current research portfolio in support of the screen industries represents over £95-million worth of live grant-based research and development investments. Declan is an AHRC/DCMS Policy Fellow in the Future Observatory at the Design Museum in London exploring net zero and carbon reduction using emerging technologies for film production. He leads the CoSTAR Network Lab in NI, a £17-million investment in a world class research lab and part of the largest research network for Virtual Production in Europe. Declan is a Co-investigator at Future Screens Northern Ireland and a Co-investigator on an EPSRC Network+ project entitled ‘Virtual Production in a Digital Economy’.

He has over 25 years of film and television production experience, including 13 years as staff at the BBC.

BFI Governors are not remunerated for these roles. This appointment has been made in accordance with the Cabinet Office’s Governance Code on Public Appointments. The appointments process is regulated by the Commissioner for Public Appointments. Under the Code, any significant political activity undertaken by an appointee in the last five years must be declared. This is defined as including holding office, public speaking, making a recordable donation, or candidature for election. Declan has not declared any significant political activity.

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