Three winners of 2018 US-Ireland Research Innovation Awards revealed

21 May 2018

Image: Oleg Krugliak/Shutterstock

For their efforts to bolster leading research, three Irish research groups and companies were named winners of the 2018 US-Ireland Research Innovation Awards.

Now in its fourth year, the US-Ireland Research Innovation Awards is a joint initiative of the American Chamber of Commerce and the Royal Irish Academy.

Its purpose is to highlight some of the major breakthroughs achieved by Irish companies and research groups thanks to investment from US businesses across three categories: SME, higher-education institute and multinational company (MNC).

Future Human

At the awards ceremony held in Dublin on 18 May, the overall winners were named as chipmaker Xilinx, the Connect Centre headquartered at Trinity College Dublin and waste management start-up OxyMem.

Also, a special recognition award was presented to the organisers of the BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition for “outstanding contribution to enabling students across Ireland to participate in science education”.

Speaking of the award winners, president of the American Chamber of Commerce, Barry O’Sullivan, said: “Ireland must continue to focus at speed on delivering innovation and competitiveness. The issues are within our collective control – education, the availability of affordable housing for all of our increasing population, world-class physical and digital connectivity, to name but some.

“Innovation at speed is our only real future. Faster decision-making processes within our Government system is essential if further opportunities are to be captured and not lost.”

Other shortlisted candidates

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation Heather Humphreys, TD, added: “I know that innovation is something that the American Chamber cares passionately about. This is a passion that I share because research and innovation is fundamental to growing the Irish economy and the wider Irish-American business relationship.

“I think it only fitting to also commend the work of the Royal Irish Academy and the American Chamber for ensuring that both the winners and the nominees get the recognition they have very much earned.”

A total of eight companies were originally shortlisted for the awards, with some of those missing out on an award including Abbott Vascular, the Alltech European Bioscience Centre and DePuy Synthes Ireland for the MNC category.

Additionally, the Dublin City University Insight Centre for Data Analytics was named among the shortlist for higher-education centres, with Orreco missing out in the SME category.

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic