Lero launches €2.9m fellowship scheme to attract software experts

30 Jan 2023

From left: Lero international funding manager Dr Martina Prendergast, Lero director Prof Brian Fitzgerald, University of Limerick research VP Prof Norelee Kennedy and Lero EU project manager Mariana Clohessy. Image: Arthur Ellis

The programme aims to attract international researchers from various software fields, to boost the career development of the fellowship participants.

Lero, the Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) research centre for software, is creating 16 postdoctoral fellowships to attract international expertise in software.

The new programme will be coordinated by the University of Limerick (UL), with fellowships available at all 12 of the research centre’s partner universities and institutes of technology.

The programme aims to attract international researchers from the fields of computer science, software engineering, information systems and human-computer interaction.

During the two-year fellowship, participants will receive skills training to assist their career development. Lero said the participants will also be provided with a comprehensive set of courses to improve their transferrable skills and diversify employment options.

The programme, called Symeco, is coordinated by Lero director Prof Brian Fitzgerald. He said the fellowships will bring together leading researchers and “contribute significantly” to Lero’s and Ireland’s research agenda.

“All 16 fellows will be highly-skilled future research leaders and we have no doubt that they will be much sought after by industry, the public sector and academia,” Fitzgerald said. “The key research strands underpinning Symeco reinforce Lero’s own key research strands, systems (what we build), methods (how we build these systems), and context (for the world we want).”

UL’s VP of research Prof Norelee Kennedy said these type of fellowship programmes are “vital” to the Irish research landscape by attracting top researchers.

“It is testament to Lero’s research reputation, and its record in developing and delivering fellowship programmes that the centre has been awarded this funding,” Kennedy said.

The fellowship programme has been funded by SFI and the European Commission’s Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions CoFund programme.

Last October, Lero launched an Open Science Charter to increase visibility for researchers, create more opportunities for collaboration and enable greater transparency in the research process.

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Leigh Mc Gowran is a journalist with Silicon Republic