Daragh O Brien, FICS

Managing Director, Head of Strategy & Research

Daragh O'Brien

About Daragh

Daragh is the Founder and Managing Director of Castlebridge and a Twitter addict. He also has an amusing story as to why his surname has no apostrophe.

He has been a pioneer in the field of information management for over two decades, and has worked with a number of professional bodies in the sector, including DAMA International. In 2005 Daragh was recognised as a Fellow of the Irish Computer Society for his contributions in the fields of Data Quality and Data Governance. In 2019 he was recognised by the All-Ireland Business Foundation as a Thought Leader in Governance, Strategy, and Ethics for Information.

He is also a contributing member to the Leaders’ Data Group, an independent think-tank of industry professionals working to develop better practices in data management and data literacy from a practical, pragmatic, and technology independent perspective.

Prior to founding Castlebridge, Daragh worked for over a decade for a leading Irish telecommunications company in roles as diverse as Call Centre operations, Single View of Customer Programme management, and Regulatory Compliance and Governance. He a regular presenter and trainer at conferences worldwide and is much sought-after by Irish media for his expertise in data law, regulatory affairs and information ethics.

Apart from his consulting and education work, Daragh is a faculty member at the Law Society of Ireland and the Sutherland School of Law in UCD, an advisor the Digital Rights Ireland and a contributing research partner to the Adapt Centre in Trinity College Dublin. Daragh was an active contributor to the Innovation Value Institute’s IT-CMF framework and various IEE/ISO standards in data management. Daragh was the Data Protection Officer for the Presidential campaign of the sitting President, Michael D. Higgins in 2018, the first election in the EU carried out under GDPR.

He is also a featured columnist with The Data Administration Newsletter (TDAN.com) and is in constant demand from national and international media for his thoughts and commentary on data-related issues. In 2016, he was ranked by Onalytica as the 24th most influential person on Twitter in Information Security (including Data Governance and Data Privacy).


  • Bachelor of Business & Legal Studies, UCD
  • Six Sigma Green Belt
  • QQI Level 6 Accredited Trainer
  • CDMP-Associate, DAMA International
  • Various project and programme management certifications

Awards & Recognition

Blog Posts by Daragh

This morning the Data Protection Commission published a decision in respect of infringements of GDPR by Bank of Ireland that highlights the importance of effective Data Quality controls and culture in organisations of all sizes. In this decision, the DPC levied an administrative fine on Bank of Ireland for infringements of Articles 32 and 34 of GDPR. The total fine levied was €463,000. However, the decision (in my opinion) took a scenic route to the

As we wind down for the year, lots of you will be getting festive emails from suppliers or receiving links to LinkedIn posts about Santa's Data Problems.

Ho Ho Ho. Oh no, no, no!!!

I'm going to be blunt: we stopped doing those kind of things about six years ago. We stopped because:

It's really hard to make that kind of thing funny without stretching the "joke" to breaking point.
It's difficult to make accurate analyses of

In this 12th episode of #12Authors12Years best-selling novelist Graeme Simsion shares insights on his data management career, Data Modeling Essentials, and Design Thinking.
Graeme proves that there really is life after data, but even in that life, the data world brings transferable skills!

In this 11th episode of our #12Authors12Years series of interviews with data management authors and thought leaders, Daragh O Brien chats with Alec Sharp of Clariteq Consulting about his 2008 book WorkFlow Modeling (2nd Edition) and the books he has read that have influenced his thinking about data and management. And then he has to pick JUST ONE as his favourite!

In this edition of our #12Years12Authors video series, Daragh O Brien chatted with Michelle Finneran Dennedy about The Privacy Engineer's Manifesto, the evolution of Privacy Engineering, and the cyclical nature of technology evolutions and revolutions

In this special edition episode of our #12Years12Authors video podcast series, Daragh O Brien chatted with himself about one of his books (available for free on the Castlebridge website) and a book that influenced him. This episode is actually an example of the topic discussed in the book Daragh has chosen as an influence...

This is the fourth of our Author Interviews in our 12 Weeks of Books to celebrate Castlebridge's 12th birthday.

In this video, Katherine O'Keefe talks with Danette McGilvray about her ground breaking Data Quality book "Executing Data Quality Projects", which has recently been updated with a second edition. Danette also shares her insight on a book that has helped shape her thinking on data management and data quality.

In this short video (edited down from a fantastic conversation), Tom shares his insights into the critical importance of data quality to organisations of all sizes. He also talks about the importance of the fundamentals of data to society. He shares some thoughts on his book Data Driven - Profiting From your Most Important Business Asset. This book sets out some essential things organisations need to do to effectively manage data as an asset.

Tom also echoes

In this short video, Katherine talks about the motivations behind writing the EDIM book and how, back in 2015 when we started the research and scoping out the models we developed in the book, there wasn't a lot of substantive content available about the practice of implementing ethics in data management and data management practices.

Katherine also discusses a book that influenced her way of thinking about data and information. And (in true Dr O'Keefe style)

Tackling the root cause of issues can often be difficult when technology presents an appealing alternative. For example, Cork City Council recently unveiled a cluster of "robo-trees" as part of their Clean Air Strategy for Cork City. These artifical structures contain a type of moss that traps and consumes particulate matter and nitrogen oxides from vehicle exhausts and other sources. This is a fascinating piece of technology combining bio-engineering and Internet of Things. As a

In this short video, John talks about one of his books, Data Governance (2nd Edition) and how the book evolved. He also talks about topics he would, in hindsight, have wanted to include in the book.

John also talks about the importance of strategy execution in data management and how that is a key gap in many organisations. Finally, he highlights how important it is for data management professionals to read outside of data management

Peter Drucker's data legacy is often overlooked. But as one of the most profound visionaries in the modern disciplines of management, Drucker foresaw many of the practical and pragmatic challenges of managing data that organisations struggle with today. Going back to the 1950s he famously praised IBM for delivering fantastic service to its customers in systems analysis and data gathering. The vinegar with the sugar came almost as an aside:  "I wish you knew more

Data-driven Change, (aka Data Transformation or Digital Transformation) is on the agenda for organisations of all sizes as we begin to build back after over a year of disruption caused by the Covid 19 pandemic. Organisations that could 'go remote' have seen value in Connected Working. However, they have also seen the gaps and weaknesses in their data capabilities laid bare in many cases. From information security gaps to data quality headaches to data governance

There is a resurgence in focus on data transformation as we adapt to a post-Covid world. This renaissance is fuelled in part by a year's worth of mothballed projects. But it is also driven by a realisation among organisations of all sizes and across all sectors that they are, first and foremost, in the business of data. Triggers include the transformation of traditionally office-bound jobs to connected working and the shift of historically 'bricks and

Infonomics is defined by my colleague Doug Laney as "the discipline of managing and accounting for information with the same or similar rigor and formality as other traditional assets". In his book "Infonomics", Doug discusses the various ways in which data can add value to an organisation. Indeed, last year Doug wrote about how data can be worth more than the organisation that is processing it. Of course, that valuation isn't always financial. In public

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