Waterford Institute of Technology is to lead one of five new Science Foundation Ireland Strategic Research Clusters.

It represents a €5.86m investment led by WIT and spearheaded by Dr William Donnelly, Head of Research at the Institute.

The industry partners involved with the Institute in the Federated Autonomic Management of End-to-end Communication Services strategic research cluster are Cisco Systems, Galway; LM Ericsson Limited, Dublin; IBM Ireland Product Limited, Dublin; Telefónica I+D, Madrid, Spain; and Hewlett Packard, New Jersey, USA.

The announcement was made by Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade & Employment Mary Coughlan today.

The Tánaiste said: ‘Science, while engaging and exciting, is also a fiercely competitive arena, and it is increasingly clear that a country’s economic fortunes are significantly dependent on its ability to conduct research that translates into economically-beneficial outcomes.’

Welcoming the announcement, Prof Kieran Byrne, WIT Director said: ‘This is a very significant development for the high-achieving telecommunications research group at this Institute. The FAME strategic research cluster has successfully come through a very comprehensive review underpinned by SFI’s strategy of only supporting the very best.

From 40 proposals, it was one of five to emerge successfully and the first ever in the Institute of Technology sector, he added.

Prof Byrne said that the large funding allocation shows that the work involved is regarded as being of value regionally, nationally and internationally.