FOUR Dublin colleges are coming together in a bid to become the country's first technological university.
The four are the Dublin Institute of Technology; Dun Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design and Technology; Institute of Technology, Blanchardstown; and Institute of Technology Tallaght.
A number of meetings have already been held between the heads of the four institutions and these will be stepped up following publication of the Hunt report on the future of higher education.
The report rules out any new traditional universities but says that, over time, a new type of technological university could be designated from merged institutes of technology.
The presidents of the four institutions told their staff that, having accepted the recommendation of the Hunt report, there was no need for another traditional university in Ireland.
"Thus, we welcome the report's support for enabling the creation of a new type of institution.
"We envisage that what will emerge will be a civic and technological university with a nationally unique profile that will constitute a significant addition to Irish higher education. Complementing and collaborating with the traditional university sector, it will be practice-led, strongly informed by research, and engaged on many levels with society and with industry," they said.
Meanwhile, Brendan Murphy, President of Cork Institute of Technology, has been appointed the Chair of Institutes of Technology Ireland (IOTI) for 2011.
A native of Tralee, Dr Murphy is a mathematics and statistics graduate and has lectured at CIT since 1974.
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