University–industry links in R&D and consultancy in Ireland's indigenous high-tech sector

Almar M. Barry, Mary Fenton


Between 1995 and 2007, the Irish Government implemented a variety of measures designed to enhance the infrastructure and profile of research activities in Irish Higher Education Institutions (HEIs). The aim was to foster a culture of innovation-led academic entrepreneurship and, thereby, develop links between HEIs and indigenous industry in Ireland, with particular emphasis on research and development (R&D) links. This paper analyses the barriers and stimulants to the creation and maintenance of links between HEIs and industry and focuses specifically on R&D and consultancy links. The findings indicate that indigenous high-tech firms are not the key benefactors of Ireland’s science and technology (S&T) base. Whilst firms are engaging in innovative activities, HEIs are excluded from such developments. Teaching and training links constitute the most common form of interaction, not R&D links and consultancy links, as might have been expected.

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