SFI Research Professorship Programme

University College Dublin (UCD), Ireland’s largest University, is now seeking to expand in key priority areas. 

We are a research-intensive University with a broad academic base across health sciences, science, engineering, business, law, agriculture, arts and social sciences. In partnership with the national funding agency, Science Foundation Ireland (SFI), UCD has identified 13 leadership posts across the following areas:

  • Manufacturing and Bioprocessing
  • ICT
  • Connected Health
  • Agrifood
  • Energy

We’re looking for leaders of international standing in their area to play a significant role at UCD and Nationally. In addition to a competitive package, successful candidates will be provided with €5M in funding over 5 years.

About UCD

  • UCD is 56% above world average publication impact 
  • UCD has received over €100m in investment from the European Commission since 2004
  • UCD received the largest ever investment in science in the history of the state - €300m for the UCD O'Brien Centre for Science
  • UCD has doubled the amount of PhD students since 2004
  • UCD has doubled the amount of publications produced since 2004

We invite you to look at our campus and our programmes. We look forward to speaking to you about our ambitious plans for research and innovation and encourage you to contact any of our colleagues on the emails below.

Candidates should have:

  • A strong academic track record of achievement in their discipline as evidenced by senior authorship of highly cited bodies of work
  • Successful track record of leadership, including of research programmes of scale, with a demonstrated ability to work across disciplines
  • International awards, membership of international boards or other comparable measures of esteem
  • Successful track record of delivering impact from research outputs through industry partnership or technology transfer

Leadership posts available in priority areas:

1. Ageing

Target Area - Ageing and Nutrition

UCD’s Institute of Food and Health, a global leader in food and health scientific discovery, seeks a Professor of Nutrition and Ageing to provide leadership in this area. The person should have expertise in applying an integrated systems biology approach to nutritional research and will be expected to develop national public policy in nutrition and ageing.


Professor Dolores O'Riordan /  


2. Agri - Food

Target Area - Animal Production

Meat and milk production account for 70% of Ireland’s gross agricultural output. UCD has Ireland’s only School of Veterinary Medicine and School of Agriculture and Food Science, and is seeking a Professor in Animal Production to complement existing expertise and to capitalise on the national opportunity for increased food animal production. 

Contact /

Professor Alex Evans / / / 


3. Agri-Food

Target Area - Sensory Science

The agrifood sector is Ireland’s largest indigenous industry and UCD’s Institute for Food and Health are at the centre of national research programmes to develop innovative new food products.UCD is seeking a Professor of Sensory Science to complement our existing expertise in the development of food structures with health benefits.


Professor Dolores O'Riordan / /


4. Energy

Target Area - Energy Systems Integration

Energy Systems Integration is gaining momentum globally as Governments and industries seek to optimise energy systems across multiple pathways (electrical, thermal, water and fuel). Ireland has a unique opportunity to leverage its island grid and significant renewable resource to develop an integrated system.  UCD seeks a research professor, based in its Energy Institute, to play a leading role in this emerging scientific area. 


Professor Mark O Malley / /


5. Energy

Target Area - Intelligent Energy Systems

Intelligent systems are central to achieving energy systems integration. UCD are seeking a research professor with expertise in optimisation and control in energy and power systems.  Based in UCD’s Energy Institute, the role will work closely with associated centres for data analytics and internet of things. 


Professor Mark O /


6. ICT

Target Area - Data Science

The interface of computer science and statistics is a new frontier of deep research in Data Science. We are now seeking a research leader who can develop a substantial research programme to complement the Insight Centre’s existing and future work by advancing the fundamental theoretical basis on which Data Science operates.


Professor Padraig Cunningham / /


7. ICT

Target Area - Cybersecurity

Cybersecurity and privacy focuses on the protection of systems and information from external and internal attack from a technology and policy standpoint. UCD is seeking a world leading researcher who can develop a substantial cybersecurity and privacy research programme to work with our Cybersecurity Centre and complement the Insight Centre by ensuring that privacy and security are embedded from the outset.


Professor Joe Carthy / /


8. ICT

Target Area - Visualisation

UCD is seeking a world leading researcher who can develop a substantial visualisation research programme to complement the Insight Centre’s existing and future work by enabling the analytic outputs to be visually presented for maximum impact and utility.


Professor Padraig Cunningham /


9. Manufacturing

Target Area - Precision Manufacturing

UCD are seeking a Professor of Manufacturing with expertise in machining, manufacturing processes and intelligent real-time compensation for process induced errors.  The role will provide new leadership for manufacturing at UCD, Nationally and within Europe and their research will be translated to address emerging and future industry priorities. 


Professor Michael Gilchrist / /


10. Manufacturing

Target Area - Automation Engineering

UCD are seeking a Professor of Automation Engineering with expertise in automation tools such as computer aided design and manufacture, supervisory control and data acquisition, motion control systems and rapid prototyping. The person should be a leading authority in their field and link with complementary Centres in Ireland (Lero, Insight, SSPC and Amber) and in particular with the strong automation capability residing in the German Fraunhofer Institutes.


Professor Michael Gilchrist/ /


11. Manufacturing

Target Area - Bio-Processing

The development of therapeutics has been characterised by a significant switch to biologics. UCD has significant strength in Chemical and Bioprocess Engineering and now seeks an international leader in the field, working with academic and industry teams to develop innovative new approaches to enhance product yield and quality. The research professor will also play a leading role in NIBRT. 


 Professor Brian Glennon /


12.Connected Health

Target Area - Connected Health

Connected health has the potential to transform healthcare and service delivery, improve the health of the nation and underpin the development of a new and vibrant industry sector. UCD now seeks a leader to integrate existing strengths in personalised medicine, personal sensing, analytics and public health  to realise the potential of Connected Health building on recent large research centre awards in the area through Insight and ARCH. 


Professor Brian Caulfield / / 

13. Smart Cities

Target Area - Internet - of - Things (IoT)

Ireland has a clearly established position as a significant world player in ICT.  UCD wishes to capitalise on this strength and seeks a research leader in the Internet of Things. The successful candidate will be an internationally respected discipline expert, but with a systems-oriented perspective. They will play a leadership role in UCD and nationally to address challenges in complex areas such as Smart Cities.