TCD’s Prof Michael Coey named SFI ‘researcher of the year’

13 Nov 2012

Prof Mark Ferguson, director-general, SFI, pictured with the winner of the SFI Researcher of the Year award Prof Michael Coey, and the Minister for Research and Innovation Sean Sherlock, TD

The physicist Prof Michael Coey, who is based at Trinity College Dublin (TCD), has been named Science Foundation Ireland’s (SFI) researcher of the year.

Coey, who specialises in the areas of spin electronics and magnetism, received the researcher of the year accolade last night from the Minister for Research and Innovation Sean Sherlock, TD, at SFI’s science summit in Athlone, Co Westmeath.

The two-day event is being attended by Ireland’s science and research community. Yesterday at the summit, SFI revealed the publication of its eight-year strategic plan called Agenda 2020.

While presenting the researcher of the year award to Coey, Sherlock spoke about how he has contributed to making Ireland a centre of excellence for research.

“As the most cited physical scientist in Ireland, he has made important discoveries, such as new iron-based rare earth magnets, while also educating future generations through his textbooks on magnetism and magnetic materials,” said Sherlock.

SFI also announced the winner of its research image competition – Rohit Mishra from CRANN at TCD for his image ‘Asteroid Belt’.

Sherlock gave the keynote at the science summit last night, where he spoke about how the Government remains committed to ensuring research and innovation will remain central to Ireland’s economic and jobs strategy.

He said 2013 would be an important year for the further development of Ireland’s research system.

“We will begin the implementation of research prioritisation in earnest, we will also enact legislation in early 2013 to further extend SFI’s remit into the applied research arena, and we shall engage closely with various stakeholders towards developing a new national science strategy,” said Sherlock.

Carmel Doyle was a long-time reporter with Silicon Republic