UCD and Teagasc have signed a Memorandum of Agreement to establish ‘The National Agricultural Research, Education and Innovation Partnership’. The agreement was formally signed by the President of UCD, Dr Hugh Brady and the Director of Teagasc, Professor Gerry Boyle in UCD recently.
A joint Teagasc/UCD Working Party, chaired by Michael Berkery, former Chief Executive Officer of the IFA, has been meeting over the last six months to agree steps on how best to formalise and strengthen the long-standing collaboration that has existed between the two organisations. There is a long history of collaboration between Teagasc and UCD and this partnership will deepen and broaden the relationship. Both parties will work jointly to achieve greater efficiencies and effectiveness in the use of State resources and ensure that the State investment in agricultural Research and Development results in real economic impact for our growing agricultural sector.
The Partnership will enhance the scientific and technical leadership of UCD and Teagasc in order to underpin the international competitiveness, growth and sustainable development of the agricultural sector. It will provide world-class education for agricultural students and deliver excellent basic and applied research programmes in key areas of relevance to the development of Irish agriculture.
The partnership’s core strategy will focus on the establishment, in close collaboration with industry, of a National Agricultural Research, Education and Innovation Programme linked to the strategies of both organisations. At the core of the National programme will be an agreed programme of agricultural research; a shared strategy for post-graduate training, including a provision for greater involvement by Teagasc personnel in undergraduate and post-graduate teaching, while also enabling more substantial engagement by UCD personnel in Teagasc research programmes and technology transfer activities.
In welcoming the Partnership, Dr Hugh Brady, President of UCD, said: “The enhanced capabilities with the partnership will enable both organisations to accomplish goals together that they could not achieve separately. It is anticipated that this Partnership will bring new and additional resources to both organisations that will enhance the flow of new information and technologies to the Irish agriculture and food sector.”
Professor Gerry Boyle, Director of Teagasc said: “increasing the co-operative and collaborative links between UCD and Teagasc will enhance the scientific and technical competence and breadth of the two institutions, while making better use of respective facilities and enabling faculty and staff to work together to develop stronger programmes of mutual interest and benefit.”
Michael Berkery, who has been appointed as Chairman of the Board of Management of the Partnership, welcomed the commitment of researchers and academics in UCD and Teagasc to “engage directly with farming and the food industry in developing joint programmes and to prioritising the development and transfer of new technologies and knowledge that will enable the sector deliver on ambitious growth targets. The state will also benefit from greater integration, efficiency, cost effectiveness and commercial benefits for public funds invested in agricultural research and education.”