Wednesday, April 13, 2011


In February, I referred to a report on the European Commission’s Framework 7 funding programme and the under-performance of Wales in accessing the funds available i.e. that as of 2010, Wales had secured €39 million euros in research funding.

Contrast that with the news for Ireland yesterday that, during the same period, our Celtic cousins had attracted €269m and were on course to secure €600m in research funding to Irish researchers and enterprises by 2007 to 2013.

Given some of the lackluster commitments by Welsh politicians to improving the research competitiveness of our economy, it is worth reading what the Irish Minister for Research and Innovation Sean Sherlock had to say:

“Thanks to national investment in research, Ireland is participating in the Framework Programme from a far stronger position than ever before. A critical mass of research activity has developed in both the public and private sectors and the design of the current programme suits the needs of Irish researchers in many ways”.

WAG civil servants take note – there is not only a proactive strategy for obtaining European funding in Ireland but the government is helping to develop the capacity of the private sector through European funding.

After 12 years of devolution, we really should be doing better.