Marine Institute Newport Research Facility – Catchment Research Cluster

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The Marine Institute launched a call for a Catchment Research Cluster in the Newport Research Facility.  Applications wereinvited from legal entities on the island of Ireland with the appropriate scientific and technical qualifications and research expertise. A partnership approach between institutions (higher education institute, research institute or other public body) and industry was permissible.

The Marine Institute's Newport Research Facility is located in Furnace, Newport, Co. Mayo, on the Burrishoole catchment and runs from the small rivers in the Nephin Beg mountains to the marine waters of Clew Bay. The facility in Newport has been in existence since 1955, when it was established by the Salmon Research Trust of Ireland. It is comprised of laboratory, administration block, freshwater hatchery, fish rearing facilities, fish census trapping stations, a salmonid angling fishery and a comprehensively monitored freshwater lake and river catchment.  In Newport, the Marine Institute hosts a wide range of practically based fisheries and environmental research and monitoring projects, with a major focus on wild salmonid and eel research and assessment.

Applications were sought to establish a research cluster at the Newport Research Facility. The cluster will utilise the facilities and long-term datasets of the Burrishoole catchment to address research questions relevant to both Irish and global marine policy objectives.  Possible areas that the research cluster might address include; climate change impacts on salmon, sea trout and eel; fish demographics in salmonid catchments – relationships with climate and environmental change; networked science (GLEON, observatory data, big data); carbon dynamics. Other topics that the research cluster might address are encouraged in the proposal, but they must utilise the facilities and long term data sets of the Newport Research Facility.  

The Marine Institute invited research proposals to address the following objectives:

  • Build research capacity in the Newport Research Facility in the areas of climate and environmental change impacts on aquaculture and fisheries and/or any other area as outlined above;
  • Build on existing long-term data sets and time series for the Burrishoole catchment and maximise their use by researchers;  
  • Increase the research profile of the Newport Research Facility through peer-reviewed publications and leveraging of further research funding;
  • Add value to the total research output from the Newport Research Facility; and
  • Provide post-graduate training for research Masters and PhD students.

It is envisaged that personnel on the project will also work closely with the existing staff in the Newport Research Facility, Marine Institute in applying for research funding particularly under the EU Horizon 2020 Programme.

The amount of funding available to the research cluster was up to a maximum of €2 million over the four-year period (2017-2021). Applications were invited for projects under three instruments:

1)    Larger team project €2 million maximum grant-aid available over four years intended to support a team of at least six people including senior post-doctoral researchers, technician/laboratory analyst, PhD student, or equivalents.
2)    Larger team project €1.4 million maximum grant-aid available over four years intended to support a team of at least four people including senior post-doctoral researcher, technician/laboratory analyst, PhD student, or equivalents
3)    Standard team project €600,000 maximum grant-aid available over four years intended to support a team of at least two people including post-doctoral researcher, research assistant, PhD student, or equivalents.

Additional call details including the Terms of Reference and Guidelines for Applicants are available.  All applications were made through the Marine Institute's Online Grant Management System.

Important Dates:

  • Open day at Newport Research Facility: Tuesday, 2nd August 2016 10:000 - 17:00 (option for potential applicants either morning session 10:00 to 13:00 or afternoon session 14:00 to 17:00)
  • Closing Date for Applications: Tuesday 6th September 2016 (16:00)
  • Interview Date: Thursday 6th October.


Open Day Documentation:

The following documents are outputs from the Open Day held on 2nd August.  If you have any queries relating to these documents please email



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