Minister Creed announces Marine Institute funding grants totalling €3.3 million

 The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Michael Creed TD, today announced the awarding of a total of €3.3 million grant funding though the Marine Institute to research projects in two areas - specialist marine equipment and Ocean Law and Marine Governance.

Some 19 funding grants in total have been made in the area of specialist marine equipment and small infrastructure, totalling more than €2.5 million investment from the Marine Institute. The HEI (Higher Education Institutes) sector will receive 14 of these grants with five being granted to industry led proposals (SMEs).

The funding grants range from €20,000 to €200,000 with industry being funded at 75 per cent, meaning that these will also leverage private investment in specialist marine equipment for research and innovation development.

The Ocean Law and Marine Governance grant is being made to a partnership project between the MaREI Centre and University College of Cork School of Law. The funding amounts to €800,000 and will run over four years, employing three researchers with contributions from 12 MaREI and 5 UCC School of Law staff.

More than 20 researchers attended the announcement of the grants today (22 November) in Dublin city centre.

Minister Michael Creed said, "I'm delighted to announce these funding grants which herald the next step forward for many new projects in our marine sector. The funding for marine research equipment helps to target a gap in funding that exists between supports available to Higher Education Institutes via HEA and support from Ireland's development agencies such as SFI and Enterprise Ireland. These grants will allow the marine research and innovation community to purchase specialist equipment needed to support their current and future research activities."

Peter Heffernan, CEO of the Marine Institute, said the funding grants would enable pioneering marine research projects to develop in decades to come.

"The Ocean Law and Marine Governance Grant marks a very important step in investing further in the area of marine law and governance," he said. "During the development of the National Marine Research and Innovation Strategy, it was indicated that this important research area should be supported and the Marine Institute, Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine and the Department of Foreign Affairs were consulted and a call was launched for a project-based funding grant.

"We are delighted that the MaREI Centre and UCC School of Law will be collaborating on this project which is called Navigate and will be led and coordinated by Dr Anne Marie O'Hagan, a Senior Post-Doctoral Research Fellow in the Marine and Coastal Governance Group in the MaREI Centre."

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