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 5,986 People working on SFI- Supported Projects; 573 SFI award holders;  868* Funded investigators and Co- Principal investigators;  2,301 Postgraduate (PhD and Masters) students supported by SFI; 149 PhD students recruited across six SFI Centres for Research Training, bringing the  number of students supported to  639,46% were women researchers; 32% of PhD and Masters students departing SFI teams went to industry as their first destination.
SFI funds excellent and impactful research and talent that is fostering a highly skilled, dynamic research and development ecosystem in Ireland. Working in partnership with the higher education institutes, government and industry, we support a diversity of collaborating researchers across a broad range of disciplines, to further the impact of the research we fund.

From training highly sought after PhD students to supporting early career frontiers researchers and senior research leaders, our work encompasses a breadth of voices on the research journey. This enables us to maximise our potential to address Ireland’s societal, economic and environmental challenges, delivering on citizens’ priorities and shaping a better future for all.

Future Skills Needs

SFI’s Centres for Research Training Programme (CRTs) supports six Centres that bring together 11 higher education institutes and 90 industry partners with a

€104 million investment. The CRTs train postgraduate students in Ireland in areas such as machine learning, digitally enhanced reality, data science, genomics, artificial intelligence, and advanced networks for sustainable societies. Working in a cohort-based learning model, PhD candidates work together, improving valuable communications skills and undertaking internships. In 2022, 149 PhD students were recruited to the Centres, of which 46% were women. This brings the total number of PhD students supported to-date by the programme to 625.

SFI also fosters the development of PhD training collaborations between researchers in the UK and the SFI Research Centres through the Centres for Doctoral Training (CDTs) to train and equip engineers and scientists with the skills and knowledge to address challenges in data and ICT. There are seven SFI CDTs with collaboration between 75 HEIs across the UK and seven across Ireland, with a €39 million investment from SFI and £442 million from the UK EPSRC.

Headshot of Prof Edward Gregg, SFI Research Professor at RCSI University of Medicine and Health Sciences.

Tackling Chronic Diseases

World-leading population health scientist, Prof Edward Gregg, Head of the School of Population Health, at RCSI University of Medicine and Health Sciences, was awarded €4.3 million in funding through the prestigious SFI Research Professorship Programme, as a joint appointment with Imperial
College London. His award will support a further 13 research positions.
One-tenth of the world’s adults have diabetes, while in Ireland the number of people living with type 2 diabetes has almost doubled in the past 15 years. Prof Gregg’s group will investigate how population-level data and research platforms are deployed in Ireland to make key decisions for the prevention and reduction of the burden of chronic diseases, specifically targeting diseases such as
diabetes and obesity. This work will pave the way for innovative population registries for chronic diseases, with the potential to improve health outcomes for patients and better inform policy.

Pictured left: Prof Edward Gregg, SFI Research Professor at RCSI University of Medicine and Health Sciences.

Prof Abhay Pandit, Director of the SFI Research Centre

Developing Future Leaders in Medical Device Research

In 2022, CÚRAM, the SFI Research Centre for Medical Devices at University of Galway was awarded almost €14 million to create 50 postdoctoral fellowship
opportunities to develop future leaders in medical device research. The co-funding programme involves €7.1 million from the European Union and €6.8 million from CURAM to launch MedTrain+, an enhanced, innovative Marie Skłodowska-Curie Action training programme. Its research outputs will benefit outcomes for chronic illnesses such as diabetes, cardiovascular, neurodegenerative, and musculoskeletal diseases, and support partnerships with SMEs and multinational companies in MedTech, pharmaceuticals and biotechnology.

Pictured right: Prof Abhay Pandit, Director of the SFI Research Centre, CÚRAM, at University of Galway, was awarded the prestigious George Winter Award 2022 from the European Society for Biomaterials (ESB) for outstanding research contributions to the field of biomaterials.

 €6.4 million invested in 43 projects through the annual SFI Discover Programme Call; 1,018 Science Week events across the country;  374 primary schools received awards via the Curious Minds Programme (formerly DPSM);  228 second level teachers attended ESERO space-themed continuous professional development;  675  primary school teachers received  continuous professional development (CPD) training through the SFI-supported DPSM/ European Space Education Resource Office (ESERO) programme; 1,775 senior cycle students attended ESERO Space Career Roadshows; 2,097 students met scientists and engineers through the ESERO Space Goes to School programme.

SFI believes that science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) is for everyone.


SFI supports and delivers public engagement activities across Ireland, bringing science to life through everyday activities and providing access to science for all our citizens. We champion best practice in STEM education, promoting curiosity across all age groups and education levels to begin a talent pipeline for the future. SFI supports programmes that engage adults of all ages and socioeconomic backgrounds, who may not previously have had opportunities to engage with science, ensuring that we foster a fully inclusive STEM workforce, and increase scientific literacy for all.

Picture of a Woman standing beside a man with a tree on the background

Debunking the Myths: Science Behind Our Sexual Health

A new series of interactive workshops and online engagement tools called ‘Debunking the Myths: Science Behind Our Sexual Health’ was launched in 2022, with support from SFI, to discuss sexual health with teenagers and debunk myths using evidence based, scientific information. It is run in partnership with RCSI Obstetrics and Gynaecology Department, the Rotunda Foundation and the Rotunda Hospital. Topics included anatomy, menstruation, contraception, sexually transmitted infections, the HPV vaccine, consent, sexual assault and information on support services for teens nationwide was provided. The programme, which was developed to complement the RSE curriculum, was delivered and approved by experts such as research scientists and medics, providing clear, accurate information in relation to sexual health. Over 5,600 students were directly engaged through workshops, with more planned to take place.

Pictured right: Dr Zara Molphy, co-lead of the DeBunking Myths Programme and research programme manager in RCSI University of Medicine and Health Sciences, and Dr Ronan Daly, Registrar in Obstetrics and Gynaecology, and programme expert.

Global Footprint

Throughout 2022, SFI deepened our reach through our international collaborative research partnerships across the globe.

Find out more about Global Footprint

Empowering Societal and Economic Benefits

SFI invests in excellent ideas and impactful research to help us successfully address the global, societal and economic challenges we face, by supporting collaboration between academia, government and industry across the island of Ireland and internationally.

Find out more about Empowering Societal and Economic Benefits

Excellent Research

SFI supports and drives Ireland’s contribution to the latest scientific breakthroughs which lead to innovation for academia, enterprise, the public sector, government, society and beyond.

Find out more about Excellent Research

Annual Report 2022

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