New EU funding studies programme aims to counter negative impact of Brexit

The northern and western region of Ireland is set to benefit from a new international study programme that helps organisations better access EU funds – and this could prove crucial in a post-Brexit era.

Twenty-five skilled personnel from the region will complete the EU Studies Programme in Galway and Brussels this winter.

The innovative programme will include visits to the EU Commission, EU Parliament and various other European institutions focused on innovation, entrepreneurship and partnerships.

The Northern and Western Regional Assembly (NWRA), Galway Technology Centre (GTC) and the Irish College in Leuven, Belgium, have teamed up to host the programme.

“This is a great learning opportunity for people whose roles involve accessing European Union funding programmes. They will greatly enhance their knowledge of the programmes and their appreciation of what is required to make successful applications. EU funding programmes are very wide-ranging and it is crucial that we develop expertise of this type in the region,” said Brendan Mooney, EU Programmes Executive, NWRA.

“The NWRA region straddles the border between Northern Ireland and Ireland and EU funding will become even more important to our support agencies to negate the impact of Brexit.”

The programme opens at GTC on 22 November and will close there in January 2020. In between, all participants will travel to Brussels for a three-day programme from the 2-5 December, staying at the renowned Irish College, Leuven, where much of the lecture hall element will take place.

It is primarily targeted at local authorities, business development groups, education and research bodies and the Atlantic Economic Corridor Officers.

“As drivers of regional growth and innovation, we are deeply familiar with the challenges organisations face in trying to source European funding. Providing this knowledge and expertise will have far-reaching implications for the region. We have recently announced plans for our new AcademyWest at GTC, which will support the creation of over 500 jobs by innovation-driven companies, facilitating the rapid scaling of tech companies across the region,” said Niamh Costello, General Manager, GTC.

Senior management personnel and those with EU project responsibilities will participate in the programme, which is limited to 25 participants. The course will include the following modules: EU Funding Programmes; Europe – Lawmaking and EU Institutions; Lobbying and Networking; EU Applications; and EU Regional Policy.

In Brussels, the group will visit KU Leuven university, Belgium, an institution for research and education with international appeal which is rated as one of the best 50 universities worldwide. The group will explore partnership opportunities for Irish small-medium enterprises.

The fee is €550, including flights and accommodation and anybody interested in applying should contact Maria Moriarty at 094 986 2970, or email [email protected].