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SFI Researchers Commercialise with DCU Ryan Academy

DCU Ryan Academy for Entrepreneurship develops entrepreneurship programme for Science Foundation Ireland-funded researchers

 Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) has partnered with the Dublin City University (DCU) Ryan Academy to provide entrepreneurship training for postdoctoral researchers at research centres in Universities across Ireland. This is part of SFI’s TIDA (Technology Innovation Development Award) 2010 programme.

SFI is working in partnership with Enterprise Ireland on TIDA to realise a greater economic impact from the state investment in oriented basic research.

The programme aims to teach business skills to university researchers and scientists.  The key objective is that successful TIDA awardees will start to develop a base of commercially-relevant, applied research skills that can then be built on with Enterprise Ireland support in order to produce tangible commercial outputs.

Director of Enterprise and International Affairs at SFI, Dr Ruth Freeman said: “Manifesting and nurturing a twinned culture of innovation and commercialization within the scientific community is a cornerstone of SFI’s TIDA programme. Identifying and bringing to fruition the commercial potential of any research concept are critical steps in the journey from idea to industry, and these are encouraged and facilitated by TIDA’s mechanisms.”

The programme, which is delivered in the iconic Ryan Academy building in Citywest Business Campus, culminates in a Demo Day for the participants.  During Demo Day, they will get to pitch their idea to a selected panel that includes a representative from the Irish Technology Leadership Group in Silicon Valley. SFI is facilitating a week-long visit to Silicon Valley for the winning presentation, which will be hosted by the Irish Technology Leadership Group (ITLG). The visit will be an opportunity for the winning researchers to meet members of the venture community and leading technology companies.

“These modules in the SFI programme are delivered by practitioners in the various fields that are vital to an entrepreneurial endeavour,” said Gordon McConnell, Deputy-CEO of the Ryan Academy and director of the SFI programme. “The objective is to give the researchers a real idea of what they need to do to start a technology company tomorrow,” he added.

The SFI programme is modeled on best practice programmes in the US and a variation of a similar programme that the Ryan Academy is delivering in collaboration with DCU Invent for researchers in Dublin City University.

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