Funding boost for innovation projects
THE Government is to make €21m in funding available for commercialising research.
The money, which will come in part from Enterprise Ireland's Commercialisation Fund, is aimed at accelerating the process whereby research and innovation projects are brought to market and start making money as quickly as possible.
In a statement, the Department of Enterprise said the funding would be "available to researchers in the third-level sector to commercialise ideas and inventions at all stages of development that will help to create and sustain jobs in Ireland and improve the competitiveness of the Irish economy".
"Commercialisation Fund projects address a gap or need in the market by developing innovations that will ideally be ready for licensing to Irish industry or may form the basis of a new start-up company in two to five years," the department added.
Jobs minister Richard Bruton said the fund would support ideas that could sustain businesses for years to come.
"This is a very positive initiative which focuses on bringing research projects to life. It provides the resources that allow research teams to move from concept to market," he claimed.
Enterprise Ireland is seeking applications to the Commercialisation Fund. The closing date is August 28.
Meanwhile, Ireland will be seeking as much as €1bn in extra funding for research and technology projects over the next six years after the EU concluded negotiations on the Horizon 2020 programme.
The €70bn Europe-wide fund takes over the Framework Programme 7 (FP7) which had provided around €484m to Irish funds.
EU research and innovation commissioner Maire Geoghegan-Quinn said the agreement was an "important step" in making sure Horizon 2020 launched next year.
"That is good news for researchers, for universities, for SMEs, and for all other future participants in the programme," she added.