Luke O_Neill

Luke O’Neill

Professor of Biochemistry, Entrepreneur, Author

The world-leading immunologist proving the power of science and data as tools that serve humanity 

Biography

One of the world’s most influential scientists, with an increasingly global profile, multi award-winning Professor Luke O’Neill is passionate about engaging people on scientific topics. And with every audience—corporate, scientific or general—he succeeds. The recipient of the Science Communicator of the Year Award in 2020, Luke has made contributions regarding Covid-19 to Sky News, The Washington Post, Channel 4, Euronews and the Wall Street Journal.

In school, O’Neill’s strongest subject was English, but he soon turned to science for its potential for discovery, and today he very much sees himself (and other scientists) as an explorer. As a biochemist and leading immunologist (in the top 1% in the world), O’Neill is obsessed with the basics of how things work, down to the molecular level. That passion is palpable wherever he speaks, as he visibly bubbles over with energy in his quest to explain how science works in the service of humanity.

O’Neill is an accessible, warm and funny speaker who often brings his audience on tangents that are by turns illuminating and compelling. Seduced by his infectious enthusiasm and belief in the power of science to help us live better lives, people come away having learnt something new, or with a different perspective on something they thought they knew.

As well as regular slots with leading Irish broadcaster Newstalk, Luke is in demand globally as a contributor on scientific developments. Wherever he speaks, his humanity, expertise and positivity shine through. He has also written three books: Never Mind the B#ll*cks, Here’s the Science (October 2020, Gill Books); Humanology: A Scientist’s Guide to our Amazing Existence; and The Great Irish Science Book.

In November 2020 Luke was named Science Communicator of the Year. In 2018, Clarivates named him one of the world’s most influential scientists. He is co-founder of three spin-out companies (Opsona Therapeutics, Inflazome and Sitryx), which are developing treatments for inflammatory diseases. He has won numerous awards for research including the European Federation of Immunology Societies medal, the International Cytokine and Interferon Society Milstein Award, The Royal Dublin Society Boyle Medal for Scientific Excellence, and The Royal Irish Academy Gold Medal for Life sciences. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 2016.

Luke is a natural communicator and is in demand as a motivational science speaker at large company events as well as delivering at boards, C-Suite roundtable and think tanks to help them plan for the future. Some of the companies that have engaged Luke recently include Bank of Ireland, Cartrawler, Google (across Europe), Microsoft-Irish staff and the Fianna Fail Parliamentary Party.

Topics

COVID 19
Professor Luke O’Neill has been one of the leading scientific voices internationally throughout the pandemic. In this talk, Luke discusses the pandemic that has affected every part of our life, tailoring the content to meet the requirements of the audience. Whoever the audience is, they will walk away with hope and the belief that there is an end in sight. The best part of this talk is getting the opportunity to pick Luke’s brain as he loves to take questions from the audience.  

Leadership:

  • The Science of Decision-Making. 
    Science is about predicting the future—about how things might work. In this talk, Luke elaborates on how adapting scientific research principles can support leaders to make better decisions, and get better results. 
  • Science for business leaders. Things to watch out for in the coming year that will help leaders better understand, predict and navigate their markets.

Innovation:  Understanding the process of innovation. 
Scientists live and die by innovation, but to succeed you have to be willing and brave enough to be wrong. In this keynote, Luke explores how the principles of scientific training can be adapted to business in order to give teams the confidence to take the risks we need to take to innovate successfully.  

Well-being:  The Science of…..  Happiness/Mental Health/Ageing/Stress/Creativity. 
As a discipline, immunology informs our understanding of every illness and condition known to humanity. Luke can talk knowledgeably and entertainingly on how we can use scientific knowledge to help us better understand any and all aspects of our well-being, from creativity to stress.

Videos

Resources

Books
Podcasts

Testimonials

“Luke spoke at both our conferences, for international customers and for suppliers. On both occasions, he was outstanding – and the feedback (and marking) from our international attendees reflected that.  He combined deep subject matter expertise, with a very engaging style, and an ability to communicate in a manner that all could understand” Patrick Kennedy, Chairman, Car Trawler

“Thank you so much for appearing at our virtual conferences. I really appreciate you giving us some of your valuable time.The feedback on your segment has been amazingly strong with attendees really appreciating access to your enormous knowledge and your accessible, down to earth communication style. ” Cormac Barry, CEO, Car Trawler

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