Seán Sherlock TD, Minister for Research and Innovation has welcomed the approval by Seanad Éireann of the Industrial Development (Science Foundation Ireland) (Amendment) Bill 2012 which passed the Committee and Final Stages. The Bill now moves to Dáil Eireann.
Minister Sherlock said “As I’ve articulated frequently since I came into in my role as Minister for Research and Innovation, we are now striving to enhance the research strengths that we have carefully developed, through successive Governments, since the latter part of the 1990s”.
Minister Sherlock added “Following this development phase over the past decade or so, the Bill now supports our aim to reposition our science and technology system towards ensuring that we gain maximum value from the State’s investment. The changes proposed in the Bill will enable Science Foundation Ireland to deliver on the Government’s aim to invest in areas linked to Ireland’s future economic and societal needs and to accelerate the delivery of outcomes from this investment.”
The main provisions of the Industrial Development (Science Foundation Ireland) (Amendment) 2012 Bill are:
• To extend the remit of SFI to enable it to fund applied research, which builds upon its current remit of funding oriented basic research, and take the outcome of research funded since the establishment of SFI closer to market;
• To re-align the priority areas of funding by the Foundation in accordance with the National Research Prioritisation Exercise, 2012;
• To provide SFI with the legal power to fund research projects in Northern Ireland and, subject to the consent of the Minister, participate in collaborative funding schemes with other countries.
Minister Sherlock concluded “Our ambition now is that Science Foundation Ireland will continue to fund scientific research of excellence – both basic oriented and applied research, which fosters innovation and enterprise, leading to high-value jobs and bring further improvements to Irish society.”
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