29/05/2003

Minister opens £2.5m UUJ Innovation Centre

Economy Minister, Ian Pearson has opened a £2.5m Innovation Centre at the University of Ulster’s Jordanstown campus.

The Technology and Engineering Innovation Centre offers office and laboratory-based space to new start-up companies in the advanced engineering and informatics sectors.

Speaking at the opening, where he was deputising for Employment Minister, Jane Kennedy, Mr Pearson emphasised the importance of translating research findings into commercial realities for the Northern Ireland economy: "The challenge is to ensure that research activity is used to its fullest potential to lay the foundations of future success of wealth.

"The Technology and Engineering Innovation Centre will provide an environment where predominantly new, high technology companies can set up and apply the fruits of the research carried out here at Jordanstown to commercial ends."

The Minister also stressed the great strides had been made over the past year in bringing university research funding in Northern Ireland to a level comparable with the other UK jurisdictions: "Northern Ireland now compares broadly with England, in terms of recurrent funding – the lifeblood of research activity.

"But we need to move further and faster if we are to compete successfully on an international stage. Government has to give its backing to knowledge transfer activities and facilities, such as this Innovation Centre I am opening today. We need as well to develop more research-focussed centres of excellence, such as those brought into operation under the Support Programme for University Research, as they are important for our future," he added.

The Department of Learning has provided £1.6 million in capital funds and £500,000 through the RTD (Research and Technology Development) Centres of Excellence programme towards the total project.

The Government has also increased recurrent research and postgraduate research funding by £10 million for 2003/04, to a total of some £36 million.

(MB)

Related Northern Ireland News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

28 September 2001
University of Ulster opens £2m Coleraine science park
The University of Ulster has opened the doors of a new £2 million Science Innovation Centre at its Coleraine campus. The investment, which will create up to 100 jobs, will offer facilities for new biotechnology companies formed through the University’s biomedical research work.
13 January 2004
NI Economic Research Institute swings into operation
The new Economic Research Institute will play an important role in contributing to economic debate and understanding in Northern Ireland and in the development of the local economy", according to Ian Pearson Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State.
28 October 2004
UU launches world-class researchers search
The University of Ulster has launched a campaign to attract world-class researchers to Northern Ireland as part of new research institute structures. The University is establishing 13 new research institutes as part of a strategic initiative to develop its position as a centre for outstanding research.
22 May 2019
PM Outlines New Brexit Deal
Prime Minister Theresa May has set out a new Brexit deal which would seek to conclude alternative arrangements for the Irish backstop by December 2020.
20 August 2014
QUB Joins NASA In Solar Flares Research
Queen's University Belfast has joined forces with NASA and the Astrophysics Research Centre (ARC) to investigate solar flares and their potential to cause disruption on Earth. Solar flares for the sun result in significant increases in ultra-violet radiation, which can cause solar storms and disrupt radio communication and GPS.