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Minister Halligan launches Ireland’s response to Horizon 2020 work programme 2018-2020

€30 Billion in research and innovation funding available from Europe

Significant changes to include ‘new ways of addressing innovation’

John Halligan TD, Minister of State for Training, Skills, Innovation, Research and Development has called on Ireland’s researchers and companies to seize the opportunities presented in the €30 Billion final work programme of Horizon 2020 at the national launch in Dublin today (Wednesday 18th October 2017).

Over 700 people from Irish companies and research performing organisations packed the O’Reilly Hall, UCD in Dublin for the national launch of the Horizon 2020 work programme 2018-2020, hosted by Enterprise Ireland and co-sponsored by InterTrade Ireland.

Speaking before the event Minister Halligan said, “To date, Ireland has won €475 million in competitive funding and is now poised to capitalise on the opportunity of the Horizon 2020 work programme for 2018-2020 with its budget of €30 billion. Ireland is already a winner in Horizon 2020 but we cannot be complacent. As we enter the final work programme of Horizon 2020, I encourage all researchers - in companies, Higher Education Institutes and public bodies - to be ambitious in the next stage of Horizon 2020. These are the entities which are already competing at the highest levels of European research, I urge them to engage with the National Support Network for Horizon 2020 to seize this opportunity.”

Guest speaker Dr. Brendan Hawdon, Advisor at the Directorate General for Research & Innovation in the European Commission outlined details of the changes to the final programme including the introduction of mission-oriented activities, new ways of addressing innovation and new areas of focus which will include; Building a low-carbon, climate resilient future; Connecting economic and environmental gains – the Circular Economy; Digitising and transforming European industry and services and, Boosting the effectiveness of the Security Union.

Panellists at the event included; Professor Orla Feely, Vice-President for Research, Innovation and Impact, University College Dublin; Prof. Mark Ferguson, Chief Scientific Advisor to the Irish Government and Director General, Science Foundation Ireland; Sean O’Reagain, Deputy Head of Unit, Advanced Manufacturing Systems and Biotechnologies, Directorate-General for Research and Innovation, European Commission; Prof. Valeria Nicolosi, European Research Council Research Professor, Trinity College Dublin and Dr. Michaela Black, coordinator of the MIDAS project, University of Ulster.

The focus of the panel discussion and the afternoon workshops was Ireland’s success in Horizon 2020 to date, how to maximise participation in the final period 2018-2020 and how to capitalise on the opportunities presented by the successor programme which will commence in 2021.

To engage with the National Support Network for Horizon 2020 in Ireland visit


For more information contact

Grace Labanyi, Communications Officer, Enterprise Ireland

Mobile +(0)87 3286404 Direct line +(0)1 7272820



Conor O’Donovan, Corporate Communications Manager, Enterprise Ireland

Mobile +(0)879671342



Horizon 2020 is the EU framework programme for research and innovation. With a budget of €74.5 billion, Horizon 2020 runs over seven years from 2014 to 2020. The Government has set a national target of winning €1.25 billon from the programme. To date, Ireland has secured funding of €475 million.

Enterprise Ireland leads the national support network for Horizon 2020, working to increase participation by Irish companies and academic institutions in the EU’s main instrument for funding research in Europe. Led by Enterprise Ireland, the national support network for Horizon 2020 has 9 member organisations; the Department of Agriculture, Food & the Marine, Enterprise Ireland, the Environmental Protection Agency, the Health Research Board, the Irish Research Council, the Irish Universities Association, the Marine Institute, the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland and Science Foundation Ireland.

For more information visit