University College Dublin (UCD) has signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) with the University of Edinburgh to develop closer collaboration between both universities.

As part of the MoA, the universities have announced that they will establish a joint three-year strategic partnership fund, worth up to €100,000 in the first year, to support collaborative research, along with undergraduate and postgraduate education, in a number of key thematic areas.

The collaboration, in areas of research, innovation and training, will focus on the priority areas where both Edinburgh and UCD have significant expertise and a shared ambition to develop a world-leading position.

Initially, the partnership will focus on One Health, recognising the continuum between human and animal health addressing challenges such as antimicrobial resistance; Geosciences, looking in particular at how to maximise our natural resources while minimising climate impacts, and Migration Studies, that is a shared lived experience in both societies. Both Scotland and the Republic of Ireland have long histories of emigration. This collaboration will seek to understand the impact of diasporas. It will also address the more recent experience of both countries in migration.

Professor Orla Feely, Vice-President for Research, Innovation and Impact, UCD said, “UK institutions, such as the University of Edinburgh, are significant partners for UCD and our strategy is to strengthen our relationships with such universities and to maintain and develop those relationships, whatever the external landscape.”

“I am therefore delighted that UCD is deepening its level of partnership with the University of Edinburgh through the Memorandum of Agreement signed today. The agreement formalises a close partnership between the two institutions that is one of our most valued and expresses our ambition to jointly contribute our expertise to solving some of the world’s most challenging problems.”

She added, “The partnership fund announced will see both universities support research and teaching activities in a number of thematic areas and I look forward to seeing the results and impact of this investment in the years ahead.”

She concluded, “Both universities will also now explore the establishment of joint commercialisation and innovation activities to promote collaboration and innovation between Ireland and the UK.”

Professor Jonathan Seckl, Vice-Principal Planning, Resources and Research Policy, University of Edinburgh, said, “As a world-leading university, Edinburgh is highly international in its outlook. 43% of our students and more than 30% of our staff are from abroad. To address the great challenges that our planet and its people face, we are now forging deeper partnerships with select leading European universities.”

“Stronger links with our colleagues at University College Dublin will provide exciting new opportunities for students and staff alike. This partnership affords an ideal prospect to discover new knowledge and develop innovative solutions to the world’s most pressing problems.”

This MoA builds on the existing close relationship between UCD and the University of Edinburgh, which includes a long history of Erasmus+ exchanges and research collaborations.

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