Tag Archive | "Waterford Institute of Technology"

€2.8m digital plan to provide economic boost to Ireland’s south-east


Waterford Institute of Technology is to lead a €2.8m digital research project to boost regional economic development in Ireland’s south-east through job creation, start-ups and commercialisation of research.

Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT), together with 14 partners, has been awarded €2.8m to lead the project known as eDIGIREGION which aims to develop smart specialisation Regional Innovation Systems (RIS).

eDIGIREGION, which is funded under the European Framework (FP7), consists of four high-potential research-driven clusters in diverse European regions including the south-east of Ireland; central Hungary; Castilla-La Mancha in Spain; and Bucharest-Ilfov in Romania.

The project will bring together regional stakeholders such as local/regional government, universities/institutes of technology, research centres, government enterprise support agencies, financial institutions, venture capital agents and industry into a coherent, collaborative and cooperative process of engagement.

“eDIGIREGION, through a series of cross-border transnational collaborations and internationalisation activities in the technology domains of the EU Digital Agenda, will support open innovation, boost regional competitiveness, and unlock new national and international business opportunities for SMEs,” explained Prof Bill O’Gorman, project director.

“A particularly unique aspect of the eDIGIREGION project is its intention to push ‘live’ research through the pipelines created by the Joint Action Plans in the four partner regions by facilitating regional actors (researchers, SMEs, government agencies and funding agencies) to bring technology through the innovation process, from research to innovation to commercialisation.”

Partners involved in eDIGIREGION – including Kernel Capital, IBEC, South East Regional Authority (SERA) and WIT – will work with regional stakeholders in the south-east to plan, design and implement an ecosystem of research, innovation, creativity and commercialisation to develop a Joint Action Plan.

This will result in the implementation of the region’s smart specialisation Regional Innovation System (RIS).

As a result the south-east will be able to enhance its sustainable competitiveness by exploiting the region’s strengths and edge in smart technologies.

“The region-specific Joint Action Plan, and an inter-regional Joint Action Plan with a consortium of partners across the EU, will enhance the south-east’s economic development, the level of new enterprise start-ups, the rate of job creation, the commercialisation of research, and the long term sustainability of the region,” O’Gorman said.

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WIT to recruit 17 PhD scholars to spearhead new research


Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) is recruiting 17 PhD scholars across a range of disciplines as part of its prioritisation of research growth at the institute.

The 36-month scholarships, in the areas of business, engineering, science, ICT, humanities and health sciences, are funded under WIT’s PhD Scholarship Programme and will provide successful applicants with an annual stipend, full fees and funding towards research costs.

“WIT is a research-informed institute,” said Prof Willie Donnelly, vice-president for research and innovation at WIT.

“Its vibrant research community is globally connected, supporting collaboration with research institutes and industries around the world. Post-graduate studies are an important part of our research culture producing future leaders for the national and regional economy.”

Over the last 10 years, WIT has substantially grown its research activity in communications networks and services and pharmaceutical science and molecular biotechnology.

The institute continues to nurture these important research areas while developing new and emerging areas of research, such as eco-innovation, materials science, vision research, business innovation and enterprise development.

“The quality of our graduate studies environment is recognised with WIT’s recent European Commission ‘HR Excellence in Research’ designation,” Donnelly said.

“This is a very exciting time for the institute as we continue to grow our research capacity. This programme is designed to attract additional excellent young researchers to conduct research across a broad range of areas.

“The successful candidates will join a strong academic community working in state-of-the-art research environments with opportunities to collaborate with our international academic and industry partners. This environment ensures that our graduates are capable of playing a leadership role in the Irish economy on graduation.”

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WIT researchers receive €1.2m in EI Commercialisation Fund


Three researchers from the Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) have jointly been awarded €1.2m by Enterprise Ireland (EI) as part of its Commercialisation Fund to help them make their ideas viable.

The fund has been created to support projects attempting to address a gap or need in the market. These projects involve the development of innovations that will ideally be ready for licensing to Irish industry or may form the basis of a new start-up within two to five years, with exceptions made for some industry applications that are, by their nature, longer than this time frame.

This year, the WIT recipients include:

  • Mr Philip Walsh, Convergent Technologies Research Group (CTRG): Developing an ICT-enabled diagnostic system for continuous real-time monitoring in advanced biomedical and life-science applications.
  • Dr Jason Barron, Telecommunications Software and Systems Group (TSSG) at WIT: PANDA: Policy authoring and analysis system in instant messaging and enterprise social network environments.
  • Dr Ramesh Raghavendra, South Eastern Applied Materials Research Centre (SEAM): Fibre optic remote cartilage assessment tool for arthroscopy applications (FORCAST).

Since 2008, WIT has received more than €63m in direct funding from both Irish bodies and at an EU level, through which it has formed partnerships with other industrial and academic partners across the continent.

Prof Willie Donnelly, head of research and innovation at the Institute, said WIT is a university-level education institution that supports a thriving research culture, particularly in the areas of ICT, biopharma, eco-innovation, materials science, regional development, and health sciences.

“We have developed a particular competency in turning research into strong commercial propositions,” Donnelly said. “Enterprise Ireland’s Commercialisation Fund is a natural fit for us as its main aim is to drive economic competitiveness through the creation of technology start-ups and the transfer of new innovations to industry.”

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