The Irish Government today unveiled its plan for a 5 year science and technology strategy, with the intention that it will lead to a substantial increase in funding allocated to research and development in science and technology in Ireland.

Some of the main goals set by the innovation 2020 plan include:

  • Increase total combined State and private sector investment in science and technology R&D in Ireland to 2.5% of GNP.
  • An increase in annual spending in R&D from €2.9bn annually to €5bn annually for the next 5 years.
  • 30% increase in the number of new enrolments in research-based Masters courses and PhDs each year.
  • A 60% increase in the number of research personnel working in business amounting to 40,000 individuals.
  • To encourage 35% of PhD researchers to transfer from Science Foundation Ireland – funded research teams into industry roles.
  • Seek membership for Ireland in three international research bodies: ELIXIR, which enables biological laboratories across Europe to share and store data as part of a network, the European Southern Observatory, and Cern, Europe’s nuclear research centre.

Innovation 2020 was launched by An Taoiseach Enda Kenny today in the National Convention Centre.

The strategy is aimed at building on the significant successes delivered by the Government’s science strategy over the past decade, which has seen Ireland dramatically improve its performance globally in this area. The next phase of the strategy is aimed at building on existing infrastructures and achieving ambitious private-public collaborations.