To coincide with our countdown of the top science and innovation stories of 2012, we talk to Science Foundation Ireland’s (SFI) director-general Prof Mark Ferguson, who gives an overview of science funding in Ireland in 2012, as well as the agency’s eight-year plan.
Ferguson took over at the helm at SFI in January and he came to the role at an interesting time for Ireland when the country was catapulted into the spotlight in terms of its science prowess, as Dublin took on the mantle of European City of Science 2012.
He starts off by giving an overview of the year in science, particularly in relation to the Euroscience Open Forum (ESOF) event that took place in July and which brought leading scientists, researchers and policy-makers from all over the world to Dublin.
Ferguson then goes on to cover the science areas where Ireland is excelling, such as in immunology and materials science, as well as other areas SFI is aiming to make more impactful.
Having also been recently appointed as the Government’s chief scientific adviser, he talks about what this role will involve.
Finally, Ferguson covers the finer details of SFI’s eight-year research funding plan, Agenda 2020.