Research and innovation are cornerstones of Ireland’s economic development policy. Significant State investment has been made over the past decade in science and technology resulting in a strong base of research expertise. Ireland’s Universities, Institutes of Technology (IoT) and research organisations have a professional technology transfer infrastructure in place to work with existing companies and to support new enterprises to leverage the value in this investment.
The Technology Transfer Offices (TTOs) and industrial liaison offices in Ireland’s HEIs and research organisations help companies and investors to:
- Access new knowledge and expertise to drive innovation through research collaboration, contracted services and consultancy.
- Identify and license new technologies and intellectual property (IP) relevant to their business.
- Make use of state-of-the-art facilities and equipment.
The majority of people working in technology transfer in Ireland have a background working in companies, from multi-nationals to start-ups, and understand the issues that businesses face when seeking to innovate. Technology transfer teams have scientifically trained business managers and act as sector experts, able to translate the needs of business and to identify exciting new commercial propositions.
Technology Transfer Staff are skilled in:
- Finding academic partners for companies
- Commercial assessment
- Contract drafting and negotiation
- Protecting and managing intellectual property (IP)
- Company formation
- Company incubation
Ireland's Technology Transfer Strengthening Initiative (TTSI)
KTI manages the Technology Transfer Strengthening Initiative (TTSI) programme on behalf of Enterprise Ireland. This funding programme, established in 2007, has been instrumental in driving the development of a professional Technology Transfer system at Ireland’s public research institutions. The current TTSI3 programme is a €34.5 million programme, supporting the continued development of technology transfer offices (TTOs) within Ireland’s research performing organisations (RPOs), by off-setting the costs of staffing and operations for a period of 5 years (2017 – 2021). The objective of the programme is to sustain and develop appropriate skills within the TTOs, for the management and commercialisation of intellectual property (IP), and to facilitate meaningful knowledge transfer interactions between Irish RPOs and Irish industry. TTSI3 builds on the successful EI TTSI2 (2013 – 2016) and TTSI1 (2007 – 2012) funding programmes that kick-started technology transfer across the Irish Universities and Institutes of Technology (IoTs).
The objectives of TTSI3 include the development of a fast, flexible response to industry’s requests for access to intellectual property and research expertise. TTSI3 maintains regional clusters (consortia) of research performing organisations, which share resources and expertise, with the expected delivery of an enhanced service for industry in Ireland. The consortia are as follows.
- Dublin City University (DCU) working with Dundalk Institute of Technology (DKIT) .
- TU Dublin (formerly DIT, ITB, ITTD) working with, Dun Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design and Technology (IADT), National College of Ireland (NCI) and The Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies (DIAS).
- National University of Ireland Galway (NUIG) working with Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology (GMIT), Institute of Technology Sligo (ITS), Letterkenny Institute of Technology (LYIT).
- Maynooth University (MU) working with Athlone Institute of Technology (AIT), Institute of Technology Carlow (ITC), Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT).
- University College Cork (UCC) working with Cork Institute of Technology (CIT), Teagasc, Institute of Technology Tralee (ITT)
- University of Limerick (UL) working with Limerick Institute of Technology (LIT).
- University College Dublin (UCD) working with National College of Art and Design (NCAD) (now a college of UCD).
- Trinity College Dublin (TCD) working with the Royal College of Surgeons of Ireland (RCSI).