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Minister Harris launches Impact 2030

18 May 2022 

Minister Harris launches Impact 2030: Ireland’s Research and Innovation Strategy

Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science Simon Harris has launched 'Impact 2030: Ireland’s Research and Innovation Strategy'.

The core purpose of the new national strategy is to ensure that Ireland’s investment in research and innovation makes as big a difference as possible to as many people as possible.

Impact 2030 will achieve this by building a more inclusive and engaged research and innovation system that is recognised as integral to addressing major societal issues ranging from climate change to health and wellbeing.


In order to realise this vision, the strategy will foster greater engagement among a wide range of stakeholders including research organisations, the tertiary education system, enterprise, public policymakers, civic society organisations and European partners.

Greater engagement will be achieved through a range of initiatives, including:

  • deeper involvement by the public in the research process, leveraging the recent success of the 'Creating Our Future' campaign, in which people throughout the country submitted over 18,000 ideas about how research and innovation can enhance people’s lives
  • the creation of a new competitive research and innovation funding agency that, as well as investing in excellent research within disciplines, will integrate human and sciences perspectives
  • amalgamating the functions and activities of the Irish Research Council and Science Foundation Ireland, which will be given effect through a landmark research bill
  • linkages between the public research system and policymakers will be enhanced, led by the Department of Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science’s new Evidence for Policy Unit, and supported by new science advice structures
  • the technological universities’ research and innovation offices will be strengthened in order to increase regional impact
  • a focus placed on increasing the number of female entrepreneurs and researchers and increasing the number of research students from underrepresented groups. This will include a report on inclusion and diversity in the Irish research system to identify issues that host institutions need to address
  • enterprise performance throughout the regions will be supported by a new national smart specialisation strategy, led by the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment
  • a research and innovation advisory forum will be set up that will provide a platform for strategic engagement with the research and innovation community and international experts, chaired by the Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science

Minister Harris said:

"The Irish research and innovation system is a strategic national asset that – through the whole-of-government approach taken by Impact 2030 – will deliver solutions and will create opportunities to address these grand challenges, building on and continuing its very successful role in Ireland’s economic performance and resilience to date.

"We know we have much more to do to strengthen and support research and innovation in our higher education institutions, in our enterprises, in our public service and for our people.

"As the attraction and retention of world-class talent becomes increasingly competitive on a global level, Ireland needs to be a location of choice for the best and the brightest in order to realise our ambitions.

"The fundamental driver of Impact 2030 will be making a real difference for all people across Ireland and beyond.

"We will create an inclusive research and innovation system delivering the solutions for Irish society and our economy, solving our common challenges through teamwork, and enhancing our reputation.

"Achieving our goals will require intense collaboration. The prize could not be more consequential for us and our future generations."