Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) has been shortlisted in three of the four categories in the prestigious Knowledge Transfer Ireland Impact Awards 2015. The awards will be presented by Damien English, Minister of State for Skills, Research and Innovation on Wednesday, 25 March in the Hilton Hotel, Kilmainham, Dublin.
The shortlisted candidates from WIT are Dr Ramesh Raghavendra, Centre Manager of the South Eastern Materials Research Group (SEAM); spin-out company FeedHenry Ltd with Barry Downes acknowledged for his role as academic founder of the company; and Dr Felicity Kelliher, co-chair of the Research in Innovation, Knowledge, Organisations and Networks group (RIKON).
According to Prof Willie Donnelly, Vice President of Research, Innovation and Graduate Studies at WIT, “WIT’s research capacity through its people, students, infrastructure and networks is critical to the economic development and competiveness of the South East region. The three shortlisted candidates reflect the diversity of expertise at the Institute and provide very powerful examples of how effective the Institute is in translating its know-how and technologies into high value products, services and processes.”
Knowledge Transfer Ireland presents the annual Impact Awards to recognise and showcase the success of collaborative research and the commercialisation of research resulting in the translation of knowledge and expertise beyond for the wider benefit of the economy and society.
FeedHenry Ltd is shortlisted for a Spin-Out Company Impact Award, with Barry Downes, CEO of TSSG, acknowledged for his role as academic founder of the company. FeedHenry, a spin-out of the Telecommunications Software and Systems Group (TSSG), was acquired by the major multinational Red Hat Inc, for €63.5m in September 2014 making it the first ICT multinational of its kind to move into the region and one of the largest spin out acquisitions in higher education.
Dr Ramesh Raghavendra, Centre Manager of SEAM, is nominated in the Consultancy Impact category. An industry dedicated materials research and development facility, SEAM has been a success story in expanding opportunities in the medical device, precision engineering, pharma and energy sectors in Ireland.
Dr Felicity Kelliher, co-chair of the RIKON group, is nominated in the Research2Business Collaborative Impact category. RIKON is Ireland’s leading service innovation provider, having developed significant partnerships with industry, government agencies, chambers of commerce and over 1000 SMEs in various sectors.
Knowledge Transfer Ireland is the State-funded central knowledge transfer office operated by Enterprise Ireland in partnership with the Irish Universities Association. KTI’s role is to actively support the commercialisation of State-funded research.