CALIN, a new €12 million life science network to assist Irish and Welsh businesses to innovate, was announced today by Paschal Donohoe TD, Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform and Welsh Finance Secretary Mark Drakeford.
CALIN (Celtic Advanced Life Science Innovation Network) a collaborative programme led by Swansea University’s Medical School is funded by the European Regional Development Fund through the Ireland Wales Cooperation programme.
CALIN aims to engage and assist over 240 Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) throughout Ireland and Wales by offering open access to a unique strategic international partnership involving six world leading higher educational institutions and global healthcare leaders Unilever and GE Healthcare.
The six higher educational institutions are: University College Dublin, National University of Ireland Galway (NUI Galway), Tyndall National Institute and University College Cork in Ireland; and Bangor University, Cardiff University and Swansea University in Wales.
Through CALIN, Welsh and Irish businesses will have access to a powerful knowledge base and technological infrastructure enabling accelerated innovation and access to a network of key stakeholders including those involved in supply chains, route-to-market and end-user healthcare providers.
CALIN’s aim is to drive smart sustainable growth in advanced life sciences in both Ireland and Wales, by undertaking a large number of collaborative R&D projects, and through these generating new jobs and attracting investors into the cross-border regions.
The network will offer R&D, technological development and innovation support to SMEs, which will drive the international competitiveness of both regions. Together the internationally recognised centres of excellence will foster long-term cross-border research and industrial partnerships, building a platform of excellence for wider interactions in Europe and beyond.
Professor Frank Barry, Scientific Director, Regenerative Medicine Institute, who leads the CALIN project at NUI Galway said: “This is a very exciting and unique opportunity for us to collaborate with SMEs in the biotech sector to help them expand their R&D effort and develop new technologies and products.”