Description:A resilient research community is a key element of a dynamic, innovative economy. Innovation is fundamental to future competitiveness - publicly funded research can generate real economic growth, foster knowledge creation, knowledge transfer and industry investment.
Therefore, Ireland must remain an attractive place to conduct research and development. Ireland is a research leader in several crucial clean technologies. Furthermore, the unique electricity system with a high penetration of variable renewable energies provides research opportunities for rigorous smart grid research and deployment. Ireland has signed up to meet the ambitious European target of total R&D expenditure to be 3% of GDP by 2020 to be achieved through both public and industry contributions.
Implication(s):There are significant funding opportunities under Horizon 2020, whereby the European Commission proposes to allocate €80 billion for the 2014-2020 for the Common Strategic Framework for Research and Innovation. It will be closely aligned with key sectoral policy priorities including the bio-economy, energy and climate change.
Energy research advanced manufacturing and environmental technologies serve as areas of opportunity areas for increased cross-border collaboration. Not only would this result in improved coordination of work, but it would also effectively address areas where the island of Ireland would have a distinct advantage (wind energy and marine renewables).
Current Position:In 2013, the Commission published a Communication setting out a strategy to enable the EU to have a world-class technology and innovation sector to meet the challenges of 2020 and beyond. In order to increase levels of investment and support the emergence of innovative, technologically-based local firms, Ireland must align it research prioritisation strategy with the need for new, low-carbon sustainable technologies and Horizon 2020 priority areas.
Coordinated energy research between industry and third level institutions should focus on areas where Ireland has a comparable advantage in order to maximise returns from national funding.
Phone: +353 1 6051697
Last Updated: 09/18/2013