TCD and UK university sign Brexit-proof deal for joint research

28 Jan 2019

From left: TCD provost Dr Patrick Prendergast and University of Birmingham vice-chancellor Prof David Eastwood. Image: Chris Bellew/Fennell Photography

As the weeks count down to Brexit, Trinity College Dublin and the University of Birmingham have signed a research and education partnership.

While there are so many unknowns when it comes to what will happen once Brexit becomes official, researchers based in the UK are already fearing the worst, with access to millions of pounds in funding likely to disappear.

In a bid to Brexit-proof its future, the University of Birmingham has signed a research and education partnership with Trinity College Dublin (TCD) to strengthen European academic links and further collaborative research outputs.

Under the deal, leading researchers from each university will work together across three different research areas. The first will be in clinical trials and training with research workshops, clinical placements for medical students, and longer-term joint PhDs as well as split appointments.

The second will be joint research split between TCD’s materials science and bioengineering centre AMBER and Birmingham’s Institute for Translational Medicine.

The third is a digital engagement and editing partnership, where Birmingham’s work in digital editing and TCD’s in digital humanities will investigate the ways in which the digital world impacts upon argument, perceptions of authorship and authority structures.

Both the University of Birmingham and TCD will also collaborate across professional services to develop best practice exchange, initially around online timetabling and academic year structure, as well as the operational management of university facilities.

“Europe continues to be a region of key importance for the University of Birmingham – in both research and education,” said Prof David Eastwood, vice-chancellor of the English university.

“As a major strand in our global engagement strategy, we are building and strengthening partnerships with priority institutions across the EU and are delighted to agree this key partnership with TCD.”

Meanwhile, TCD’s provost Dr Patrick Prendergast added: “Advances are made through partnership with others. It is partnerships that have enabled Trinity to enhance its global standing as a place of learning giving equality of opportunity to all with the talent and ambition to succeed.”

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic