Removing Obstacles for Researchers to drive National Recovery through R&D

IUA Press Release

Clearing Obstacles for Researchers to drive National Recovery through R&D

At a showcase of its services, Seán Sherlock, T.D., Minister for Research & Innovation, today commended the work of EURAXESS Ireland in helping to deliver on Government’s programme for National Recovery by promoting opportunities for researchers and facilitating them in either finding opportunities in Ireland or elsewhere in Europe.

Speaking at the Showcase co-hosted by its joint funders, the Department of Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation (DJEI) and the Irish Universities Association (IUA), Minister Sherlock said, “The availability of top quality people to deliver new knowledge and to turn it into goods, services and benefits for our citizens is essential”.

The programme for National Recovery includes an important role for innovation and commercialisation. As a result of sustained national R&D investment, Ireland has built a strong science base, and has joined Finland, Germany and the US in the world’s top twenty countries for scientific output. In addition, two thirds of Ireland’s R&D is in the private sector, creating new product and service innovations that will drive exports, growth, and jobs”, the Minister added.

The attraction of highly skilled people to Irish Industry & academia is a key component of developing Ireland as an innovation leader.  A key initiative in helping to deliver on this objective is the Hosting Agreement scheme, also known as the Scientific Visa. The Hosting Agreement Scheme fast-tracks non-EU researchers’ immigration and also allows the researcher’s immediate family to live in Ireland for the agreement’s duration. The agreement also entitles the researcher’s spouse and dependents to apply for a work permit.

Ireland voluntarily signed up to this EU Commission directive in October 2007 and was one of the first Member States to implement it.  The scheme has been very successful and to date the EURAXESS Ireland office has processed over 1,000 Hosting Agreements for thirty accredited organisations, and 460 researchers (15 % of the total Irish researcher population).

As companies engage more in research and innovation they should consider the services of the EURAXESS office, and the benefits of the Hosting Agreement Scheme, crucial in the recruitment of researchers”, said Minister Sherlock.

Giving the keynote speech at the Showcase, Stefaan Hermans, Head of Unit at the European Commission’s Directorate General Research and Innovation said, “For the past decade the Commission has made significant efforts to emphasise the importance of researcher mobility as part of career development. Our aim has been to create a single market for research and ease of researcher mobility is crucial to this”.   

To overcome obstacles facing researchers the European Commission established the EURAXESS Ireland office and portal in 2004. Part of a European Network the office is located at the IUA and is co-funded by the DEJI and the IUA. EURAXESS Ireland’s services and supports are available to companies, research organisations and higher education institutions.

The EURAXESS Ireland office, one of over 200 services centres across Europe, provides free advice and guidance to researchers and their families on administrative, working and cultural matters including immigration, residency and work permits, schooling, and other practical information to guide them before and upon their arrival in Ireland.

The Portal is a one-stop shop for researchers seeking to advance their careers and personal development by moving to other countries, and for organisations in search of the best European talent. Part of a European network of thirty-seven national EURAXESS portals, it provides access to a complete range of information and support services for European and non-European. also hosts a job portal, which provides a free search facility that allows employers to identify potential research vacancy candidates and advertise their research vacancies. Uniquely, the Irish portal allows both the researcher and research organisations to create profiles that link when vacancies of mutual interest arise. There are now over 5,000 registered portal users who receive regular job and funding opportunities updates. Registered researchers can conduct a tailored search for available research positions and funding opportunities according to their disciplinary and professional experience.


For further information please contact: 
Lia O’Sullivan, Communications Manager, Irish Universities Association, 6764948,


Additional Information:

  • EURAXESS Ireland was designated in 2004 by the Department of Enterprise to act as a hub for the Irish Researchers Mobility Network.
  • The office was initially co-funded by the European Commission, the IUA, and the Dept. of Enterprise for a 3 year period. EU Commission funding ceased in 2007 but the EURAXESS office continues to function with financial commitment from the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation and the IUA, thus ensuring the sustainability of the network in Ireland.
  • Organistations accredited as part of the Hosting Agreement Scheme inlcude: all seven Irish universities, ten Institutes of Technology, eight other research institutions, and six private sector companies.
  • The EURAXESS Ireland portal
  • The central EURAXESS portal