Professor Ronan Cahill Receives the 2022 NovaUCD Innovation Champion of the Year Award

Dublin, Ireland, 30 March 2022, NovaUCD has today announced the recipients of its annual innovation awards which highlight successes made in areas of knowledge transfer, consultancy, entrepreneurship and the promotion of an innovation culture, by members of the UCD research, innovation and start-up community.

A total of 8 Awards were presented by Professor Barbara Dooley, Acting UCD Registrar and Deputy President during an event held in the UCD University Club.

Professor Barbara Dooley, Acting UCD Registrar and Deputy President said, “The NovaUCD Innovation Awards which have become a key annual event at UCD, were established to recognise and highlight the successes being made by members of our research, innovation and entrepreneurial communities across the University. I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate all those who have received Awards today and I wish them ongoing successes in the years ahead as they continue to deliver impact for the economy and society through their commercialisation, consultancy, entrepreneurial and innovation activities.”

Professor Ronan Cahill, UCD School of Medicine and Mater Misericordiae University Hospital, was named recipient of the 2022 NovaUCD Innovation Champion of the Year Award, in recognition of his championing of digital innovation and innovative solutions in surgery.

Professor Cahill has a major academic interest in surgical innovation and new technologies and is active in forging research partnerships, both nationally and internationally, focused on clinical and medical device development via phase 1, 2 and 3 trials.

At the Mater Hospital, he has led the establishment of a Clinical Anatomy Centre with Professor James Jones, UCD School of Medicine, the only in-hospital Advanced Surgery Training, Research and Development unit in the country which has provided over 1,000 training days for undergraduates and postgraduates through consultant level masterclasses.

Professor Cahill is a co-awardee and clinical lead of a DTIF project entitled "The Future of Colorectal Cancer Diagnosis and Treatment" which secured €5.7 million in funding. 

The project is focused on colorectal cancer diagnosis and treatment and aims to transform the diagnosis and surgical treatment of gastro-intestinal diseases, specifically cancer, by allowing decision-support information to be available when needed for faster and more accurate interventions for patients. The other members of this project consortium are, RCSI University of Medicine and Health Sciences, IBM Research Ireland and Deciphex.

Professor Ronan Cahill said, “It’s lovely to receive this award from NovaUCD on behalf of all the great people who through their work are striving for better surgery through innovation at the Mater Hospital and the UCD School of Medicine in partnership with our academic and industry colleagues and of course, most importantly, our patients.”

Professor Cahill also works closely with the Mater’s Transformation Office, Innovation Manager, PILLAR Centre and CEO as well as the NCAD Medical Devices Programme to develop Innovation in Surgery in all its forms at the hospital for better patient care.

The other Awardees are;

2022 NovaUCD Innovation Award, Professor Dominic Zerulla, UCD School of Physics. Since he joined UCD in 2014 Professor Zerulla has disclosed 11 inventions to NovaUCD, 5 of which have been patented, and founded PEARlabs, a UCD spin-out company.

2022 NovaUCD Invention of the Year Award, Dr John McCallig, UCD Lochlann Quinn School of Business and the UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School, whose invention is to use privacy preserving analytics to collect and share commercially sensitive information about VAT obligations and payments.

2022 NovaUCD Spin-out of the Year Award, BioSimulytics, a UCD spin-out focused on using artificial intelligence to digitise key steps in how new drug molecules are designed and developed. The company was founded in 2019 by Professor Niall English, Dr Christian Burnham, and Peter Doyle as a spin-out from the UCD School of Chemical and Bioprocess Engineering.

2022 NovaUCD Consultancy of the Year Award, Dr Sarah Cotterill, UCD School of Civil Engineering and UCD Dooge Centre for Water Resources Research, for a consultancy study entitled ‘A Framework for Improving Domestic Water Conservation in Ireland’, commissioned by An Fóram Uisce (the Water Forum) through ConsultUCD.

2022 NovaUCD Founder of the Year Award, Sheena Bailey and Louella Morton, co-founders, TestReach.

2022 NovaUCD Licence of the Year Award, Professor Andrew Keane, UCD School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Director, UCD Energy Institute and co-founder and CTO of NovoGrid, a UCD spin-out and a pioneer in Grid Edge intelligence software that optimises energy delivery.

2022 NovaUCD Outstanding Achievement Award, Aidan Corbett, co-founder, Wayflyer, which earlier this year became Ireland’s sixth tech unicorn on securing a $150 million Series B funding round.


30 March 2022

For more information contact Micéal Whelan, Communications and Media Relations Manager, NovaUCD, UCD Research and Innovation, e: