Irish President’s visit marks two decades of Ireland Wales Collaboration

Twenty years of the Ireland Wales Cross Border Programme was celebrated today when the Irish President, Michael D. Higgins was special guest at an event, showcasing the work of the highly successful collaborative programme, hosted by Swansea University’s Institute of Life Science (ILS2) at the College of Medicine

Signing of the Wall

‌President Higgins marked two decades of successful collaboration by meeting with Welsh and Irish representatives from the projects at the event held at the ILS2’s Hub and culminated in the President signing the Hub’s Ambassador wall.

A published poet and author and admirer of Dylan Thomas’ work, President Higgins, was also presented with “The Collected Poems of Dylan Thomas”, edited by Professor John Goodby of the University’s College of Arts & Humanities who is a world authority on Dylan Thomas.

Professor Hilary Lappin-Scott, Pro-Vice Chancellor of Swansea University said at the event: “I would like to extend our warmest thanks to President Higgins for his visit to Swansea University today to mark 20 years of collaboration through The Ireland Wales Cross Border Programme. We also very much look forward to developing relationships in the future and, hopefully, the next 20 years and more of continued collaborative success.”

Professor Keith Lloyd, head of the College of Medicine said: "It's a great honour to welcome President Higgins, Ambassador Mulhern and the minister Jane Hutt here to the  College of Medicine which this year celebrates its tenth anniversary"

ILS2 Balcony

Some key Swansea University projects forming part of Ireland Wales Cross Border Programme include:

The Celtic Alliance for Nanohealth (CAN). Swansea University’s College of Medicine is the lead partner in an alliance with Trinity College Dublin, Dublin City University, and University College Dublin, which through the application of nanotechnology to healthcare, is helping companies on either side of the Irish Sea stay at the forefront of innovation and growth, in what is a fast developing and hugely influential healthcare sector.

EcoJel. This collaboration between Swansea University and University College Cork, assesses the opportunities and detrimental impacts of jellyfish in the Irish Sea.

IMPACT (Integrated Management of forest Pests Addressing Climate Trends). Led by Forest Research in Wales, Aberystwyth, with partners in the National University of Ireland, Maynooth University and Swansea University, this project assesses how changing climate will influence the damage to our trees and forests by pests.

SUSFISH. This project brings together the Universities of Bangor, Aberystwyth, Cork and Swansea to produce guidelines for future fisheries management and policy of the shellfish industry in Ireland and Wales for the next 50-100 years.

The Wales Ireland Network for Innovative Photovoltaic Technologies (WIN-IPT). This industry-driven initiative between Waterford Institute of Technology and Swansea and Bangor Universities, along with a variety of commercial partners, designed to promote innovation and enhance business opportunities for SMEs working in the area of Photovoltaic (PV) technologies.

Picture 1: Irish President signs the ILS2 Ambassador wall

Picture 2 L-R

Jane Hutt, Welsh Government Minister for Finance and Government Business, Professor Keith Lloyd, Head of Swansea University College of Medicine, Sabina Higgins, wife of the President of Ireland, President Michael D. Higgins, President of Ireland, Professor Hilary Lappin-Scott, Pro-Vice Chancellor of Swansea University