Significant funding for DIT research under PRTLI5

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DIT has been awarded a total of €15.267 million under the Programme for Research in Third Level Institutions (Cycle 5) to fund its participation in six significant research projects.  PRTLI5 will run between 2011 and 2016 and is an investment in physical infrastructure and research projects in Irish higher education institutions.  At the launch of PRTLI5, the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Innovation said the investment ? which is the largest in the history of the state ? would help to create smart jobs and make Ireland Europe?s innovation hub.  ??By investing in research, buildings and people, we can continue o make our higher education institutions among the best in the world and drive a new culture of innovation that will create smart jobs for smart people?, Minister O?Keeffe said.

One major project for which DIT received €12.4 million funding is the development of the Environmental Health Sciences Institute (EHSI) at Grangegorman.  This innovative project will see a dedicated research facility established on the site of the new DIT campus, enabling inter-disciplinary collaboration between scientists and environmental health professionals.  DIT will be the lead institution, working in partnership with the HSE, Dublin City Council, the University of Ulster, Dublin City University and the Institute of Public Health in Ireland.  The aim of EHSI is to develop national and regional capacity, as well as the scientific evidence base, to inform environmental health policy, planning and decision-making, as well as developing practical solutions to environmental health problems.

DIT is also a partner with a number of other institutions in five other successful bids under PRTLI.  These include:

  • National Audio Visual RIA Repository, led by the Royal Irish Academy with partners NUIM, TCD, DIT, NUIG and a wide range of cultural organisations
  • Telecommunications Graduate Initiative, led by Trinity College Dublin with partners UCD, UCC, NUIM, DCU, DIT and WIT
  • Inspire: Graduate programme in Nanoscience and Nanotechnology, led by UCC Tyndall Institute with partners CIT, DIT, DCU, NUIG and UL
  • GREP-Eng: Graduate programme in Engineering, led by Trinity College Dublin with partners UCD, UCC and DIT
  • Grad-CHEM: Graduate programme in Chemistry, led by Trinity College Dublin with partners UCD and DIT

President of DIT, Professor Brian Norton said he was delighted with the outcome for DIT.  ?This has been an excellent process for DIT, in which almost all projects in our submission were successful.  PRTLI has been transformative in terms of strengthening research capacity in higher education, and the process of working in collaboration with other institutions and partners is extremely valuable.  In the case of the new Environmental Health Sciences Institute, as well as our academic partners in DCU and UU, we are particularly pleased to be working with colleagues in Dublin City Council, HSE and the Institute of Public Health.  We see very obvious potential for bringing the benefit of this area of research to people in a very tangible way.?

Professor Norton congratulated the team who prepared the successful submission, under the leadership of Professor Ellen Hazelkorn, Director of Research and Enterprise in DIT, and said he looked forward to work commencing in each of the funded projects.

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