Recognising the achievements of Ireland’s Champions of EU Research

Researchers winning equivalent of €2.7 million in Horizon 2020 funding per week

28th June 2017
Dublin, Ireland

John Halligan T.D., Minister of State for Training, Skills, Innovation, Research and Development with Julie Sinnamon, CEO of Enterprise Ireland will present outstanding achievement awards to academic researchers, companies and research organisations that have reached the pinnacle of European research at ‘Ireland’s Champions of EU Research’ event taking place in the Royal Hospital Kilmainham, Dublin today (Wednesday 28th June).

Sixteen individuals will receive Horizon 2020 achievement awards for their projects which exhibited outstanding leadership in their respective programme areas.

The aim of the event is to recognise the immense contribution of the award winners and all project leaders from Ireland to our national success in the €75 billion Horizon 2020 EU Framework Programme for research and innovation. Enterprise Ireland is hosting the event on behalf of Ireland’s National Support Network for Horizon 2020.

Speaking ahead of the presentation of awards the Minister said “I am delighted to be here today among this impressive and diverse representation of the Irish research community. The breadth of projects nominated for awards today inspires confidence in the continued excellence and dedication to research and innovation in Irish society. I was particularly impressed to note the variety of Universities, Higher Education Institutes, agencies and companies that are competing at the highest levels of European research.”

Julie Sinnamon, CEO of Enterprise Ireland added “Today’s event celebrates the achievements of collaboration between academic research and industry. Horizon 2020 is an important source of funding for research and innovation and provides a mechanism for researchers and Irish enterprise to network and collaborate with the best researchers and leading companies across Europe. These benefits are particularly important for a small, open economy like ours. The award winners here today are a source of inspiration for others and I’d like to wish them every success with their current projects and in their future endeavours.”

A panel discussion at the event will focus on Ireland’s success in Horizon 2020 to date, how to maximise participation in the final period 2018-2020 (launching later this year with a budget of €30 billion), and how to capitalise on the opportunities presented by the successor programme which will commence in 2021.

Dr Imelda Lambkin, National Director for Horizon 2020 reiterated that “today is about recognising what has worked well for Ireland’s researchers to date and applying that knowledge to position Ireland to make best use of the available funding from Horizon 2020 and FP9. We call on our EU Champions to lead this initiative as role models and mentors”.



Horizon 2020 is the EU Framework Programme for research and innovation.  It runs over the period 2014-2020 and has a total budget of €75 billion. Ireland’s national target of securing €1.25 billion in EU funding is equivalent to 1.67% of the overall Horizon 2020 budget. To date, Ireland has secured funding of €424 million, representing 1.66% of the total EU budget committed.

Enterprise Ireland leads the national support network for Horizon 2020, working to increase participation by Irish companies and academic institutions in the EU’s main instrument for funding research in Europe. Led by Enterprise Ireland, the national support network for Horizon 2020 has 9 member organisations; the Department of Agriculture, Food & the Marine, Enterprise Ireland, the Environmental Protection Agency, the Health Research Board, the Irish Research Council, the Irish Universities Association, the Marine Institute, the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland and Science Foundation Ireland.

For more information visit

List of winners

1. European Research Council (ERC) awardees

Professor Suzanne Kingston, UNIVERSITY COLLEGE DUBLIN for her ERC Starting Grant. Suzanne’s project focuses on Legal Architectures: The Influence of New Environmental Governance Rules on Environmental Compliance – it achieved the highest ranking for an Irish applicant for this grant type.

Professor Anna Davies, TRINITY COLLEGE DUBLIN for her ERC Consolidator Grant. Anna’s project is SHARECITY: Assessing the practice and sustainability potential of city-based food sharing economies – also ranked highest.

Professor Poul Holm, TRINITY COLLEGE DUBLIN for his ERC Advanced Grant. Poul’s project is NorFish North Atlantic Fisheries: An Environmental History, 1400-1700 – also ranked highest.

2. Recognising the career development of our next generation researchers

Dr Conor O’Byrne, NATIONAL UNIVERSITY OF IRELAND, GALWAY and Dr Fiona Doohan, UNIVERSITY COLLEGE DUBLIN for leadership of their Marie Skłodowska-Curie Innovative Training Networks in the areas of Understanding and Exploiting Mechanisms of Sensory Perception in Bacteria and training in innovative and integrated control of cereal diseases – both ranked first in their respective calls.

Dr Brian Cahill, INSTITUTE OF BIOPROCESSING AND ANALYTICAL MEASUREMENT TECHNIQUES, HEILBAD HEILIGENSTADT and MARIE CURIE ALUMNI ASSOCIATION on behalf of all of Ireland’s Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellows. Individual Fellowships support the mobility of researchers within and beyond Europe – as well as helping to attract the best foreign researchers to work in the EU.

Professor Jane Ohlmeyer, Chair of the IRISH RESEARCH COUNCIL for leadership of the CAROLINE programme for Collaborative Research Fellowships for a Responsive and Innovative Europe. The CAROLINE Fellowship Programme provides a unique opportunity for 50 researchers to develop their skills, competencies and experience through collaboration with NGOs and International Organisations under the overarching theme of global sustainable development as set out under the United Nations 2030 Agenda.

Professor Linda Doyle, Director of CONNECT, TRINITY COLLEGE DUBLIN for leadership of the EDGE training and development programme for postdoctoral researchers that offers a unique combination of disciplines and industry engagement to the 71 fellows it will recruit. Leveraging the strengths and assets of three Irish National Research Centres, AMBER, CONNECT and ADAPT, headquartered in TCD, EDGE will form the next generation of thought leaders in ICT.

3. Northern Ireland and North-South successes

Ms Julie-Ann Walkden, BUSINESS SERVICES ORGANISATION, HEALTH AND SOCIAL CARE NORTHERN IRELAND for leadership of the Northern Ireland-led project, ‘Mobile Assistance for Groups and Individuals in the Community’ (MAGIC). The MAGIC project is designed to discover innovative approaches to post-stroke care with a view to improving the independence of stroke survivors. This Pre-commercial Procurement project is the only one of its kind on the Island of Ireland, focusing on engaging with industry providers that will compete through several phases of solution development, testing and deployment in live healthcare environments in both Northern Ireland and Italy.

Dr Michaela Black, ULSTER UNIVERSITY for leadership of the MIDAS project on Meaningful Integration of Data, Analytics and Services. The MIDAS consortium is a partnership involving health authorities in five EU countries and the U.S. and technical big data experts from research institutions, MNCs and SMEs. Managing big data for ‘health in all’ is a monumental challenge for policy makers. MIDAS is developing an integrated solution which will liberate knowledge from data silos and unify heterogeneous big data sources to provide evidence-based actionable information and transform the way care is provided. DCU and IBM Ireland are partners in the project.

Professor Chris Elliot, QUEEN’S UNIVERSITY BELFAST for leadership of the EU-China-Safe project Delivering an Effective, Resilient and Sustainable EU-China Food Safety Partnership. EU-China-Safe will mobilise resources in Europe and China to deliver a shared vision for food safety and authenticity and work towards “mutual recognition”. Comprising 15 participants from the EU and 18 from China, EU-China-Safe will develop and jointly implement major advances in improving food safety and combating food fraud in the two trading blocks. Teagasc and UCD are partners in the project.

4. SME Instruments

Mr Des O’Leary, ONCOMARK LTD for leadership of the OncoMasTR project developing a Novel Prognostic Assay for Early Stage Breast Cancer: the highest scoring Irish project in the Horizon 2020 SME Instrument. OncoMark, a spin-out from UCD, is developing a novel, game-changing breast cancer prognostic assay which has the potential to transform patient care. OncoMasTR will help clinicians to decide which patients should receive chemotherapy for early stage breast cancer, which is a pressing clinical and economic issue worldwide. OncoMark’s plans to release its innovative breast cancer diagnostic test in 2018 have been bolstered by the company’s latest investment round. The company ranked first for its Health Pitch at the European Commission’s Innovation Summit.

Mr Paul Collins, DP DESIGNPRO LTD for leadership of the DP Renewables project developing a range of HydroKinetic turbines that will enable users to exploit the huge potential of clean, predictable energy in the world’s rivers, canals and estuaries: the second highest scoring Irish project in the Horizon 2020 SME Instrument. Europe, as well as many countries around the world, is rich in small and medium-sized rivers and straits between islands. Existing technologies require very fast flow speeds and large deployment spaces in order to make turbine outputs viable. DP DesignPro aims to commercialise a range of innovative, hydrokinetic turbines that will offer a reliable solution for generating zero-carbon energy from rivers, estuaries and canals.

5. Collaborative Research

Mr Gal Weiss, IBM IRELAND LTD for achievement of a Horizon 2020 collaborative project portfolio of scale; IBM Ireland is one of the European Commission’s Top 50 Companies in Horizon 2020. IBM Ireland has had 18 projects approved with funding of approximately €11 million. Projects span the areas of Information and Communication Technologies with applications in Internet of Things, Health, Energy and Security.

Dr Michael Madden, NATIONAL UNIVERSITY OF IRELAND, GALWAY for leadership of the ROCSAFE Remotely Operated CBRNe Scene Assessment Forensic Examination project under the SECURITY programme – a €4.7 million 13 partner project with Irish partners REAMDA LIMITED, SCORPION NETWORKS LTD, UNIVERSITY COLLEGE CORK, DEPARTMENT OF DEFENCE and the HEALTH SERVICE EXECUTIVE. The overall goal of ROCSAFE is to fundamentally change how CBRNe events are assessed, in order to ensure the safety of crime scene investigators by reducing the need for them to enter high-risk scenes. For this, ROCSAFE will make use of cost-effective remotely-controlled robotic air and ground vehicles that are designed for use in rain, wind, and challenging ground surfaces.

Dr Peter O’BRIEN, TYNDALL NATIONAL INSTITUTE, UNIVERSITY COLLEGE CORK for leadership of the PIXAPP Photonic Integrated Circuits Assembly and Packaging Pilot Line project in the ICT programme – a €15 million 18 partner key enabling technologies project. PIXAPP will establish the world’s first open access Photonic Integrated Circuit assembly and packaging Pilot Line. It combines a highly-interdisciplinary team of Europe’s leading industrial and research organisations and provides Europe’s SMEs with a unique one-stop-shop, enabling them to exploit the breakthrough advantages of PIC technologies. Irish company EBLANA PHOTONICS will work with UCC in the project.



For more information contact:
Grace Labanyi
Senior Executive, Corporate Communications
Enterprise Ireland
Direct line:  +353 (0)1 727 2820
Mobile: +353 (0)87 3286404

The Plaza, East Point Business Park, Dublin 3, Ireland.

Invitation to attend the Horizon 2020 Champions of Research Event

The Irish support network for Horizon 2020 Ireland invites you to attend a celebration of the achievements of Irish co-ordinators of Horizon 2020 projects.

We are honoured that Ms. Julie Sinnamon, CEO Enterprise Ireland, will present the Research Excellence Awards.

This national event provides an opportunity to network with other Irish academic and industrial researchers who are leading Horizon 2020 funded projects.

The forum will take the format of a panel discussion on topics including the impact of Horizon 2020 on Ireland’s research system and strategic approaches to maximising future Horizon 2020 and future Framework Programme participation.

Event details

The Royal Hospital Kilmainham
Military Road
Dublin 8

Registration commences at 11.30 am
Lunch served from 12 pm – 1 pm
Event commences at 1 pm and will conclude at 3.30 pm


To confirm your attendance please follow this link

Dr Imelda Lambkin
National Director for Horizon 2020
Enterprise Ireland

Tel: +353-87-646 2431

3 Irish companies secure over €5m from Horizon 2020 SME instrument

Ireland aims to win €1.25 bn – an average of €3M per week – over lifetime of 7 year programme.

Three Irish companies were successful in securing almost €5.33 million between them from a total budget of €99.96 million under phase 2 of the Horizon 2020 SME Instrument. Out of the 69 successful SMEs to achieve the Phase 2 funding, the 3 Irish companies were;Valitacell Ltd, Diania Ltd, and SwiftComply TopCo LtdIn this phase of the SME instrument, each project can receive up to €2.5 million, or €5 million for health projects, to finance innovation activities.

Dublin based Valitacell Ltd. develops biotechnology which allows companies to deliver faster and cheaper processing of bio-therapeutic drugs.

Galway based Diania Ltd is working on the commercialisation of advanced extrusion technologies through materials innovation to enhance the performance functionality of catheter based medical devices.

Dublin based SwiftComply TopCo has developed an innovative and exciting new approach to delivering and monitoring hospitality compliance, the Horizon 2020 funding will enable them to push this forward.

The funding allows the successful companies to invest in innovation activities such as demonstration, testing, piloting, scaling up and miniaturisation, in addition to developing a mature business plan for their product.

The companies will also benefit from 12 days of business coaching. Most projects are proposed by a single SME but some companies team-up to elaborate a project.

The next cut-off for applications from SMEs to Phase 2 of the Horizon 2020 SME Instrument is on 18/10/2017.

Contact for further information.

Irish Examiner: supplement on 60 years of European Unity

Researchers aided by the EU play a major role across the globe in developing valuable ideas, writes Máire Geoghegan-Quinn.

HORIZON 2020, the EU’s instrument supporting research, innovation, and science worth nearly €80bn over the next seven years, is one of the most open publicly funded programmes of its kind worldwide.

Representatives from the research, education, private, and public sectors from 185 different countries have already participated in the previous EU R&D framework programme.

From Accra to Adelaide, from Buenos Aires to Beijing, European researchers and industries have collaborated and continue to do so with partners around the world on a range of different topics.

Global societal challenges such as climate change, food security, an ageing population, energy security, and combating disease, require an increasingly concerted international research effort.

European scientists and researchers must work in a spirit of co-operation with the best international talent if Europe is to create the goods, processes, and services necessary to tackle these societal challenges.

Minister Halligan welcomes the appointment of Sharon Bailey as the Chairperson of the European Association of Research Managers Administrators (EARMA)

Minister Halligan welcomes the appointment of Sharon Bailey as the Chairperson of the European Association of Research Managers Administrators (EARMA) – DJEI, 28th April 2017

The Minister for Skills, Training and Innovation, John Halligan TD, today welcomes the appointment of Sharon Bailey as the Chairperson of the European Association of Research Managers Administrators (EARMA). Ms Bailey, currently Director of Research Finance & Operations in University College Dublin (UCD,) is the first woman elected to this role.EARMA represents the community of Research Managers and Administrators (RM&As) in Europe. It currently has more than 1,000 members, across 40 Countries, who work in industry, academia, the public and private sectors. EARMA works with the EU Commission, as well as national and international funding agencies. It provides a networking forum, a learning platform, and a place to share experiences and best practice in the wider RM&A community.Minister Halligan said “The appointment of Sharon Bailey is a fantastic achievement both for her personally and the Irish research community. I wish to extend my congratulations to Ms Bailey and wish her every success in her new role. Gender equality in research and development continues to be a priority area for my Department, both nationally and at EU level.”


For more information please contact: or 016312200

Minister Halligan welcomes Ireland’s continued success in winning EU funding for Research and Innovation

  • Ireland wins a total €386 million of EU funding
  • This includes 82 individual awards of more than €1 million to companies and Higher Education Institutions.

11th April 2017
The Minister of State for Training, Skills and Innovation, John Halligan T.D. today (11th April 2017) welcomed the latest results on Ireland’s success in securing competitive funding from the Horizon 2020 programme.

Researchers and companies in Ireland have won a total of €386 million in EU funding from the Horizon 2020 programme from 2014 to February 2017. Higher Education Institutions accounted for €221 million, or 57% of the total and companies won €126 million, or 33%. SMEs received €78 million of the funding to companies.

To date 82 individual participants (companies and researchers) have secured funding of more than €1 million.

Ireland’s best performance was in the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions sub-programme which supports the training and mobility of researchers. Ireland has secured €70 million from this programme, equivalent to 3.1% of the committed EU budget. Ireland’s next best programmes were the Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) and European Research Council programmes, which yielded €62 million and €49 million, respectively.

This performance means that Ireland is on track to achieve its national target of securing €1.25 billion in EU funding over the course of Horizon 2020.

Minister Halligan said that “I am delighted to see the continued success of companies and higher education institutions in Ireland in winning EU funding in open competitions with their peers across the EU. This clearly demonstrates the excellence of the research being undertaken in Ireland”.

Minister Halligan added “Research and Innovation are at the core of the Government’s enterprise strategy for creating new, sustainable jobs. Innovation is vital if companies are to succeed in international markets. The Government allocated €761million for Research and Innovation in 2016 and I am very pleased to see that this national investment is being leveraged to access EU funding”.

Professor Mark Ferguson, Director General of Science Foundation Ireland and Chief Scientific Adviser to the Government, commented “I congratulate all the successful winners of EU Horizon 2020 funding and strongly encourage others to try again, or apply for the first time, to these important, competitive, research funding programmes from the European Commission. I am particularly pleased to see: Irish researchers in Industry and Academia lead and win major projects; SFI Research Centres collaborate to secure major funding under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie programme; and the substantial improvement in Ireland’s success at the European Research Council. This competitively won European funding compliments and leverages the investments made nationally.”

Dr Imelda Lambkin, National Director for Horizon 2020, said “the latest results showcase Ireland’s growing leadership in collaborative research, development and innovation projects, with new projects in sectors such as Agri-Food, Energy, Electronics, Information and Communication Technologies. Successes range from companies such as OPENHYDRO GROUP, EIRECOMPOSITES TEORANTA and SCHWUNDGRAD ENERGIE in Fast Track to Innovation, to TEAGASC, UNIVERSITY OF LIMERICK and UNIVERSITY COLLEGE CORK in co-funding programmes to develop the next generation of research leaders’’.


For more information contact Press Office, D/Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Tel:016312200 or

Horizon 2020 is the EU Framework Programme for research and innovation. It runs over the period 2014-2020 and has a total budget of €75 billion. Enterprise Ireland leads the national support network for Horizon 2020, which assists companies and academics to apply for funding under the programme.

The funding to date, €386 million, represents 1.70% of the total EU budget committed, €22.7 billion. Ireland’s national target of securing €1.25 billion in EU funding is equivalent to 1.67% of overall H2020 budget.

EU market provides healthy returns for Galway based Chanelle

Building up a strong presence in European markets required vision and tenacity for Co Galway based Chanelle Group, one of the many successful Irish companies supported by Enterprise Ireland.

 “I made the strategic decision to concentrate on the EU in 1996 as I felt there were better opportunities there in the long term and it was a higher price market”

Chanelle Group in Loughrea, Co Galway epitomises what can be achieved in eurozone markets by an Irish company when its leader takes a long-term view and recognises the importance of investment in research and development (R&D).

Currently employing 395 people and exporting to 80 countries worldwide, Chanelle specialises in the development, production, marketing and distribution of generic animal and human pharmaceutical products.

Chanelle’s turnover has doubled over the past five years to reach over €100m in 2016. The EU accounts for about 83% of overall sales.

Click here to read the full article

Four Irish SMEs to receive EU grants of €50,000 each

Four Irish SMEs are to receive EU grants of €50 000 each under the latest round of Horizon 2020 funding announced today.

Three Dublin-based firms and one company from Galway will receive the award which is provided under phase 1 of Horizon.

Caraglass was successful in its funding for “iSafe”, an Internet Safety Awareness for European primary school children and Accucolour for “PET-Yield”, a new manufacturing method to carry out a more efficient, waste-reducing production of plastic bottles.

Meanwhile, InvizBox is to get a grant for “InvizBox GO 4G” –  an innovative approach to securing data on the internet and mbryonics for “Raven” or Real Time Access To Virtual Earth Observation Network.

Each project will receive €50,000 to finance feasibility studies for new products that can disrupt the market – and they can also ask for up to three days of free business coaching.

The SME can also apply for Phase 2 support – which is usually between €500,000 and €2.5m – if the project’s feasibility study shows that it could be developed into a successful product on the open market.

Overall, 184 European SMEs were selected for funding for this round, with most of the projects in the area of IT and communications.

In total, 47 Irish SMEs have been awarded Horizon 2020 SME Instrument Phase 1 funding since its launch in 2014, putting Ireland in 12th place overall.

Louise Kelly
Irish Independent



Ireland’s Horizon 2020 support network in Brussels to discuss and influence next phase of Horizon 2020 and future EU Research and Innovation programme

Press Release

14 March 2017

Ireland’s Horizon 2020 support network in Brussels to discuss and influence next phase of Horizon 2020 and future EU Research and Innovation programme

Ireland’s support network of national delegates and contact points are meeting EC policy officials today at Enterprise Ireland’s Brussels office, to hear first-hand how they can influence the remaining Horizon 2020 work programmes.

When the Irish Government launched its strategy for Horizon 2020 in December 2013, it also announced an ambitious target of €1.25bn to Ireland by the end of the seven year programme (2014-2020).

Official European Commission data shows Ireland successfully winning competitive proposals to-date to the value of €386.5 million. This is slightly ahead of the government’s target and is reflective of the strong Irish participation by both academic and industry researchers.

However, this is no time for complacency on the part of the support network which is led by Dr Imelda Lambkin, National Director Horizon 2020. 2017 is an important year in the European calendar as the mid-term review of Horizon 2020, along with the early discussions on the next framework programme (FP9) and the new multi-annual financial framework (EC budget) are all being negotiated in Brussels over the coming months.

Whilst the government is pleased with Ireland’s performance in Horizon 2020 to-date, they remain focused on increasing key performance areas and are mindful of a number of initiatives and political developments which could impact on their ambitious target. In particular, they are keeping a watchful eye on the Interim Evaluation of Horizon 2020 and its impact on the development of the plans for its successor, as well as monitoring developments in areas such as the new European Innovation Council, Open Science and the potential effects of “Brexit”.

Ireland’s top programme area in Horizon 2020 is the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (MCSA) which supports mobility and training of researchers and has secured €59.7m in funding, just ahead of the ICT Leadership in Industrial Technologies programme at €59.6m.

Dr Imelda Lambkin, Enterprise Ireland and National Director of Ireland’s Horizon 2020 support network said she is “delighted” by the success of Irish participants to-date, claiming it shows “real evidence” of the talent and abilities throughout Ireland.

Dr. Lambkin said she and her team are “working to influence the 2018-2020 programmes” so that researchers, in Irish research institutes and company-based, can access greater funding. It has already been seen in the early part of the programme that those using the services of the national support “tend to double their chances of success in the programme”.


For more information contact: Evelyn Smith, Manager, EU R&I Liaison, Enterprise Ireland, Sablon Tower (14th floor), Rue Joseph Stevens 7, 1000 Bruxelles

Tel: +32 2 673 98 66


Head Office

Enterprise Ireland
East Point Business Park, Dublin 3
Tel: +353 1 727 2000 | Fax: +353 1 727 2020

  • The Department for Agriculture Food and the Marine
  • The Environmental Protection Agency Ireland
  • Health Research Board
  • Higher Education Authority
  • Irish Research Council
  •  Irish Universities Association
  • The Marine Institute
  • Science Foundation Ireland (SFI
  • The Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland

Horizon 2020 national support network led by Enterprise Ireland