Posted: 8 October, 2014

Minister for Research, Innovation and Skills, Damien English, T.D. has announced the award of over €5.5 million in funding to support postdoctoral researchers under the Irish Research Council’s (IRC) 2014 Government of Ireland Postdoctoral Fellowship Scheme.

Minister English said “This postdoctoral programme is designed to support researchers’ on their career paths while enabling them to carry out their research in collaboration with internationally recognised research teams within Ireland’s research community.”

These postdoctoral awards support early career researchers to carry out topical and socially relevant research. The researchers, and research, being funded include:

Dr. Richard Waldron, who has been funded to study both financial and non-financial impacts on households, specifically in relation to mortgage stress and the property crash in the aftermath of the current financial crisis.

Dr. Sinead Ryan, who is investigating the benefits of exercise and its potential to improve cognitive function and to reduce inflammation of the brain in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease.

Dr. Marcin Penk, whose research will make important contributions to the understanding of climate change and invasion ecology on biological communities and ecosystem functioning.

Dr. Emily O’Brien, who is examining the early modern genres of true-crime murder literature, drawing original findings that will prove vital to the understanding of privacy and the ownership of information in the present world.

Dr. Charles Nwankire, who is developing an innovative biochip for the rapid and ultrasensitive detection of bacteria associated with bacterial meningitis which could result in quicker and more accurate diagnosis and treatment.

Minister English also said “These highly competitive awards emphasise the development of the skills of the individual researcher, cultivating creative and innovative people who can ransmit new ideas and knowledge and who will become key members of our research community.”

Announcing the funding, Dr Eucharia Meehan, Director of the IRC, commented that: “The Irish Research Council is delighted to launch the 2014 Government of Ireland Postdoctoral Fellowship awards under this extremely competitive scheme. These awardees have not only demonstrated excellence, but the selected projects also have the capacity to benefit society and improve our quality of life and our economy, both in Ireland and globally”.

A full list of awardees may be accessed on the Irish Research Council website here.