Policy Forum for Ireland

The future for research and innovation in third-level institutions after 2020 - partnerships, investment and realising the benefits across Ireland

Morning, Tuesday, 30th April 2019

Central Dublin


This conference will be a timely opportunity to discuss the future for research and innovation in third-level institutions - focusing on:

  • Partnership opportunities and developing collaboration;
  • Attracting investment and funding - as well as talent and expertise; and
  • Maximising the impact of research on the economy and society.

It will be an opportunity to discuss lessons learnt from Innovation 2020 and Horizon 2020 - particularly following the Third Progress report - as the Government begins considering the shape of future frameworks.

Discussion will focus on looking to the future for research and development and maximising its impact on the economy and society - particularly potential economic, social and health research impacts.

It takes place in the context of the renewed Research Priority Areas such as health and wellbeing; innovation in services and business processes; smart and sustainable food production and processing and manufacturing and novel materials.

Attendees will also look at how ties between business and third-level institutions can be strengthened, in line with the goals of Innovation 2020 and the Action Plan for Education 2018

We expect discussion on how opportunities for collaboration can be recognised and facilitated, particularly in identifying and addressing national challenges, as well as the future for developing and enhancing the networks of research centres.

Further areas for delegates to consider include both domestic and international partnerships, especially post-Brexit, looking at aligning principles and goals, and identifying market opportunities.

The agenda also looks at the development of research staff, including issues around diversity, career guidance, training and developing strong career pathways.

Further sessions assess options for tackling funding and resource challenges for Irish universities, including how they can attract both Irish and foreign investment, and develop and support their own spin-out business ventures, and wider cutting-edge research projects.

Keynote Speaker

Gearoid Mooney

Divisional Manager, Research and Innovation, Enterprise Ireland

Guest of Honour

John Halligan TD

Minister of State for Training, Skills, Innovation and Research and Development

Keynote Speaker

Gearoid Mooney

Divisional Manager, Research and Innovation, Enterprise Ireland


Noel Rock TD

Member, Committee on Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Houses of the Oireachtas


Gillian Barry

Head, Innovation and Enterprise, Limerick Institute of Technology

Professor Amanda McCann,

UCD School of Medicine; UCD Conway Institute and Chair, Patient Voice in Cancer Research (PVCR), UCD and President, Irish Association for Cancer Research (IACR)

Professor Jane Ohlmeyer

Member, Royal Irish Academy; Chair, Irish Research Council and Director, Trinity Long Room Hub Arts & Humanities Research Institute, Trinity College Dublin

Paul Farrell

Country General Manager, IBM Ireland

Brendan Bonner

Chief Technologist, IDA Ireland

Elizabeth Nolan

Head, ConsultUCD, University College Dublin

Dr Lisa Keating

Director, Research and Innovation, Irish Universities Association

Claire McGee

Senior Innovation and Education Policy Executive, Ibec

Professor Linda Doyle

Dean and Vice President for Research, Trinity College Dublin

Olivia Mullooly

Partner, Arthur Cox

Professor Frances Ruane

Research Affiliate, Economic & Social Research Institute