Irish Research Council

Who we are

The Irish Research Council (IRC) was established through the merger of the Irish Research Council for the Humanities and Social Sciences (IRCHSS) and the Irish Research Council for Science, Engineering and Technology (IRCSET). The merger was announced in the government’s Public Sector Reform Plan in November 2011.

The Irish Research Council continues the various activities and funding programmes of the two previous Councils – IRCHSS & IRCSET. It focuses on early stage researcher career formation and skills development and in encouraging independent exploratory research. It manages a suite of inter-linked research schemes, mainly scholarship and fellowship funding to Masters and PhD students and early stage postdoctoral researchers across the broad range of HSS and SET disciplines. The Irish Research Council also offers a range of awards with a specific enterprise focus which are co-funded with industry partners. The Council remit covers the full range of disciplines spanning the humanities, social sciences, business, law, sciences, engineering and technology. The IRC provides policy advice on postgraduate education and on more general research matters to the Higher Education Authority (HEA) and to other national and international bodies.

What we do

  • The Research Council operates research funding initiatives which support talented researchers in their early stage career formation across masters, doctoral and postdoctoral levels across all disciplines.
  • The emphasis of the funding programmes is on exploratory research aimed at yielding new concepts, findings and innovations.
  • Funding is made available through a series of strictly competitive calls for applicants. Selection for funding is based on merit and the decision processes are overseen by independent assessment panels.
  • Council partnerships extend to government departments and civic society, with complementary programmes addressing research for policy and research to address societal challenges
  • Through its membership of the European Science Foundation, the Council is committed to integrating Irish research in European and international networks of expertise.
  • The Research Council is the designated National Contact Point for the European Research Council in the Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences and for researchers to address the societal challenge of ‘Europe in a Changing World – Inclusive, Innovative and Reflective Societies’.
  • The Irish Research Council has been given a particular role to support and cultivate trans and interdisciplinary research.
  • The Council jointly operates the Irish Marie Sklodowska Curie Office at the IUA.

Address: IRC, 3 Shelbourne Buildings,
Crampton Avenue, Shelbourne Road,
Dublin 4. D04 C2Y6
Phone: +353 1 231 5000
Fax: +353 1 231 5009