€3.2m for science and tech research

5 Mar 2003

The Embark Initiative has today issued €3.2m in funding over the next two years to 40 talented researchers who are working to complete post-doctoral research in the sciences, engineering or technology.

The Embark Initiative is a major national research funding initiative operated by the Irish Research Council for Science, Engineering and Technology. The Embark Postdoctoral Fellowship Scheme is aimed at ensuring that Ireland retains and attracts the highest level R&D capabilities for the future as well as promoting Ireland as a location for world-class research.

Applications for the scheme were submitted in November 2002 and some 216 responses were received from people with PhDs wishing to further their research work. The 40 successful applicants will each receive funding for two years of €33,000 for the first and second year, plus expenses of €5,000 each year.

Professor Thomas Mitchell, chairman of the Embark Initiative, indicated that Ireland needs an increase in the number of experienced researchers in science, technology and engineering. “The training of adequate numbers of researchers is an ongoing problem, yet experience from our programmes to date has yielded substantial demand from highly qualified personnel,” he said.

“Applicants for the Postdoctoral Fellowship Programme were of a high standard, which demonstrates the highly promising research skills base that we have in Ireland. This groundswell of knowledge must continue to be encouraged and financially underpinned by the State in the national interest,” Mitchell added.

As well as the postdoctoral research awards, Embark invests in people and ideas, addressing individual research funding needs at masters, doctoral and postdoctoral level.

By John Kennedy