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The Mapping Study of Research and Technology Development (RTD) Centres across Ireland and Northern Ireland, presents for the first time a picture of complementary research systems with highly developed RTD capacity in critical areas.
It also finds that, despite this strong degree of complementarity and a high degree of motivation for co-operating in areas that are economically critical and mutually rewarding, co-operative activity is lower than could be expected.
David Dobbin, Chairman of InterTradeIreland, which commissioned the report, said:
This Mapping Study of Research and Technology Development (RTD) Centres across Ireland and Northern Ireland, provides for the first time, details of research centres of excellence in key technology areas and the potential for collaborative research and development projects. The study also highlights barriers to progress including networks and funding structures which need to be addressed if the opportunities available are to be realised.
Aidan Gough, Director of Strategy & Policy at InterTradeIreland, said: Substantial amounts are being invested in research centres North and South. However, opportunities to optimise the outputs from this investment could be boosted through improved awareness of potential partners and the availability of a targeted funding scheme.
The report, which aims to inform a collaborative strategy for action by relevant policy makers and development agencies, identifies 36 centres 18 in the North and 18 in the South, spanning areas such as biotechnology, ICT and nanotechnology as having the highest potential for cross-border collaboration. A further 23 8 in the North and 15 in the South are identified as having potential for co-operation.
It recommends enhancing levels of awareness and communication, developing support programmes which facilitate co-operative activity, and examining ways to fund such collaboration. Measures suggested include improved graduate education linkages, additional support for networking, encouraging co-operative research clusters and a dedicated funding mechanism.
The full report can be accessed at: www.intertradeireland/mappingstudy
InterTradeIreland's mission is to enhance the global competitiveness of the all-island economy to the mutual benefit of Ireland and Northern Ireland through measures such as the creation of knowledge-intensive all-island trade and business development networks and the implementation of all-island trade and business development programmes.
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