The winners of the prestigious 2018 Science Foundation Ireland Awards were revealed at the annual SFI Science Summit on Monday 12th of November, recognising leading Irish researchers contributions to the fields of science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM).
Prof. John Boland, School of Chemistry at Trinity College Dublin and a former Director of the Centre for Research on Adaptive Nanostructures and Nanodevices (CRANN) and AMBER, was awarded SFI Researcher of the Year. This award recognises the accomplishments of a Science Foundation Ireland funded researcher who has contributed significantly to the Irish research community in the year of the award and throughout their career achieving exceptional scientific research outputs combined with a clear demonstration of the ability to communicate their research. Prof. Bolands’ current research interests involve the electrical and mechanical properties of nanoscale materials, and the exploitation of nanoscale connectivity in device applications. Following his BSc degree from University College Dublin and PhD from the California Institute of Technology Prof. Boland came to Trinity College as an SFI Research Professor and has subsequently received three SFI Investigator awards. He is Ireland’s first Advanced ERC grant awardee in the Physical Sciences.
Commenting on his award, Prof Boland said “I am delighted to accept this award from Science Foundation Ireland. Being recognised as Researcher of the Year is no small accolade and I am deeply honoured to receive it. Alongside my own work on nanoscale materials there are many diverse research projects ongoing across Ireland, and it is wonderful to see representatives from those being recognised. I want to thank SFI for this award and would like to congratulate the other recipients on their achievements.”
Acknowledging the eleven award winners, four of whom are based at Trinity College, Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Ms Heather Humphreys TD, said “I am pleased to see the outstanding work of the Irish research community acknowledged through these SFI Science Awards. The recipients are among Ireland’s top researchers and the awards recognise the contribution they are making in a number of areas including industry collaborations, entrepreneurship, communication and public engagement. I would like to congratulate each awardee on their tremendous achievements, their discoveries will bring economic growth and societal development in Ireland.”
Director General of Science Foundation Ireland and Chief Scientific Adviser to the Government of Ireland, Professor Mark Ferguson, also congratulated the award winners, saying “Every year the Science Foundation Ireland Awards provide an opportunity to highlight some of the excellent impacts and achievements of our research community. I want to congratulate the winners on their dedication and the contribution they are making to Ireland’s economy and society. I am confident that their success will be a source of inspiration to their peers and, more importantly, to the next generation of researchers in Ireland. At Science Foundation Ireland we very pleased to see the superb quality of research that our funding enables, and are proud that Irish research continues to be impactful and world-leading.”