Fine Gael Cork South West Deputy, Noel Harrington, has said the landmark investment being made by Government and private industry into seven world-class research centres, represents the largest investment of its kind in the State which will lead to high-end jobs being created in Cork and across the country.
“The investment of €300 million into seven world-class Research Centres is the largest ever State/industry co-funding research ever made in Ireland. Two hundred million euro is to be provided by the State, with a one hundred million euro co-investment by more than 150 industry partners, including Cisco, Hewlett Packard, GSK, Pfizer and Eli Lilly.
“This investment will directly support 800 top-class researcher positions which will further cement Ireland’s reputation as a research hub and help to encourage further overseas investment.
“The funding is to be delivered through Science Foundation Ireland’s (SFI) Research Centres Programme and will be provided over the next six years with a mid-term review. The seven centres will adopt a collaborative approach across a number of Irish research institutions which will include University College Cork (UCC), the Cork Institute of Technology, and CSO Cork.
“UCC will take the lead role in the research which will look at issues such as disease prevention and healthy ageing, and the Institute of Fetal and Neonatal Translational Research (INFANT) which will work to develop screening and diagnostic tests for the most common complications of pregnancy and newborn babies. UCC will also play a prominent part in the development of Ireland’s Big Data and Analytics Research Centre, INSIGHT, as well as in establishing sustainable, secure, profitable energy supply both at home and for export through Marine Renewable Energy Ireland.
“Other partner institutions that will be involved in these projects include Mercy University Hospital, Cork University Hospital and the Tyndall National Institute at UCC. This investment recognises the strong growth potential of the research sector and will deliver quality jobs in areas such as information and communications technology, pharmaceuticals, medical technologies and energy.
“The Action Plan for Jobs has identified key sectors for development which have growth and job creation potential. This investment will bolster those sectors and build on the advances we have made to date in scientific research, ultimately turning good ideas into good jobs. The number one priority of this Government is to get our people back to work and to build on our strengths as a nation. This investment will help to deliver on that objective.”