Ireland has won a total of €336.7 million from the EU Programme for Research and Innovation, equivalent to an average of €2.4 million every week, the Minister for Training, Skills and Innovation, John Halligan T.D. announced today.
The latest results on Ireland participation in Horizon 2020, the EU’s €75 billion programme for Research and Innovation, reveal that Ireland has won €336.7 million in competitive funding from the programme up to the end of September. This figure is an increase of €85 million, from the previous result of €251 million up to November 2015.
Higher Education Institutes accounted for €198 million or 59% of the total. Companies won €104 million or 31%, with €74 million of this going to SMEs.
The just-published European Commission’s annual monitoring report for 2015 also reveals that Ireland recorded the second highest success rate in 2015 for applications to Horizon 2020 (13.1%), along with Belgium (also 13.1%). The best performer was Austria (13.9%).
Welcoming Ireland’s results, Minister Halligan commented, “Horizon 2020 is an important source of funding for research and innovation in Ireland. It provides a mechanism for researchers and companies in Ireland to network and collaborate with the best researchers and leading companies across Europe. These benefits are particularly important for a small, island nation. SMEs are a key target for Horizon 2020 and I am particularly pleased that Irish SMEs have secured €74 million in funding.”
Minister Halligan added that “The Government has set an ambitious target to secure €1.25 billion in funding from Horizon 2020 over the period 2014-2020 and these latest results show that Ireland is on track to achieve this target”.
Professor Mark WJ Ferguson, Director General of Science Foundation Ireland and Chief Scientific Adviser to the Government of Ireland said that “I congratulate all the researchers, in both academia and industry, who have won this important EU funding against stiff international competition. This demonstrates the strength and quality of our research base and leverages the national funding, as well as providing access to facilities and expertise that Ireland – a small country – needs. I encourage those in industry and academia who have not yet applied to consider doing so and to take advantage of the considerable national supports from agencies such as EI and SFI. I encourage everyone to be ambitious and develop research proposals of scale and excellence which will have a significant impact into Ireland’s economy and society.”
Dr Imelda Lambkin, the National Director for Horizon 2020 said that “We are delighted to see Ireland’s researchers and companies succeeding in Horizon 2020. It’s real evidence of their ability not just to establish international reputations in research and innovation but to lead in that context. We are actively working to influence the 2018-2020 programmes to suit Irish interests and continue to seek newcomers to apply. Researchers and companies that use the services of the National Support Network for Horizon 2020 tend to double their chances of success in the programme.”