Monday, January 17, 2022

A host of researchers at University of Limerick are to receive funding to collaborate on projects with a societal impact.

Ten researchers and academics at UL are to receive Irish Research Council funding for New Foundations projects, it has been announced.

Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science, Simon Harris TD, announced the Irish Research Council funding this Monday for 77 New Foundations projects that will bring researchers and community organisations together to collaborate on projects that will have a “tangible impact on societal issues”.

The projects will reach communities across the country and beyond, focusing on diverse societal challenges, with the IRC providing funding to enhance research partnerships with civic society organisations. The announcement represents a total investment of almost €990,000, with over €115,000 allocated to UL.

The UL recipients are Andrew Lacey, Ann-Marie Creaven, Dervla Kelly, Marta Giralt, Muireann McMahon, Rose Gavin, Susan Huschke, Amanda Haynes, Jenny Roth and Daragh Bradshaw.

Professor Norelee Kennedy, Vice President Research at UL, said of the awards: “Congratulations to all of the awardees - including the 10 at University of Limerick - of this very valuable scheme which will address a range of important research areas.”

Minister Harris said: “I welcome the announcement of the 77 New Foundations research awards today – another record number of projects being supported by the Irish Research Council under this programme. The 55 research partnerships with community and voluntary groups will have an invaluable impact – bringing new insights and evidence and allowing these organisations to have an even bigger impact on those they are trying to reach, especially the most vulnerable and marginalised in our society.

“The community and voluntary sector plays a critical role in Irish life and will continue to do so. As these projects get underway, they support enhancement of the services this sector provides, while also providing excellent partnership opportunities for our researchers.”

The IRC said 55 projects would be funded to enhance research partnerships with civic society organisations. In addition, a further 22 projects are to be funded by government departments and agencies addressing global development, north-south reconciliation, our shared island, and police-community relations.

Since 2015, over 200 community, voluntary and charity organisations have engaged across the Irish Research Council’s suite of funding programmes. A total of 362 partnerships between civic society organisations and researchers have been supported, with an associated investment in excess of €9.9 million.

Director of the Irish Research Council, Peter Brown said: “In addition to the 55 projects announced today that will collaborate with civic society partners, we are also delighted to renew our ongoing partnerships with government departments and agencies. This form of collaboration provides excellent opportunities for researchers to contribute to evidence-based policymaking, resulting in better outcomes for society and citizens in the face of many national and global challenges.

“In addition to the awards first announced in late 2021 funded by An Taoiseach’s Shared Island Unit, we are delighted to be announcing today the New Foundations awards made under strands funded by the Department of Foreign Affairs and the Policing Authority, respectively.”

For more, see here.