by Sarah O’Leary
UNIVERSITY of Limerick-based Irish software engineering research centre Lero is among five such centres worldwide to benefit from Government and industry funding to the tune of €245million.
The announcement was made this week by Richard Bruton TD, Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, and Damien English TD, Minister for Skills, Research and Innovation.
Professor Mike Hinchey, director of Lero and Professor of Software Engineering at UL, expressed his delight at the announcement, saying: “Software has now become an essential component of virtually all businesses and across all industries and sectors. Lero brings together internationally recognised research capabilities in software research along with 29 industry partners.
“This funding awarded to Lero will allow us to conduct research on the latest industry software challenges, enabling multinationals and SMEs in Ireland to thrive and maintain a competitive advantage, and establish Lero as a world class centre of software research excellence.”
Lero brings together leading software teams from universities and institutes of technology in a coordinated centre of research excellence with a strong industry focus. It has raised the level and profile of Irish software research to such a degree that it is now one of the most highly regarded software research centres in the world.
UL president Professor Don Barry said: “This investment in world-class research at Lero will support Ireland’s ability to retain and attract top researchers and is another important step in building our smart economy.
The University of Limerick is home to two SFI research centres covering the fields of software [Lero] and pharmaceuticals [SSPC], and together with our investment in The Bernal Project, we are furthering our commitment to excellence in science and engineering research and assisting Ireland’s economic recovery.”
The funding of €155 million from the Department of Jobs will be delivered through Science Foundation Ireland’s Research Centres Programme, coupled with €90 million in cash and in-kind contributions from industry partners. The funding will support cutting-edge research in critical and emerging sectors of the economy and will be provided across the next six years to 2020.