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Firms in Ireland Uplift Research and Development Investment


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Firms in Ireland are demonstrating a notable shift towards bolstering their investments in research and development, reflecting a strategic response to the evolving business landscape. As the majority of companies in the region gear up to expand their RDI spending, a closer examination of the factors driving this trend reveals a complex interplay of challenges and opportunities. By exploring the nuances of this heightened RDI focus, a deeper understanding of Ireland’s innovation ecosystem and its implications for the global economy emerges, paving the way for insightful discussions on the future trajectory of research and development endeavors in the country.

Current State of RDI Investment

In Ireland, the current state of research and development investment (RDI) reflects a growing trend among firms with 77% planning to increase their RDI spending. This surge in RDI investment is driven by challenges such as artificial intelligence (AI) implementation and talent shortages, pushing businesses to prioritize innovation. However, obstacles like grant administration complexities and funding limitations still hinder progress, with 60% of businesses citing lack of funding as a primary barrier to innovation. Despite these challenges, the majority of firms are dedicated to enhancing their RDI activities, showcasing a commitment to advancing technological capabilities and staying competitive in a rapidly evolving market landscape.

Challenges Faced by Businesses

The persistent obstacles encountered by businesses in Ireland underscore the challenges faced in maneuvering the world of research and development investment (RDI). Lack of funding emerges as a primary barrier to innovation for 60% of businesses, while challenges like AI advancements and talent shortages prompt 77% of businesses to increase RDI spending. Grant administration is a significant hurdle, with over 40% of businesses finding it time-consuming for RDI activities. These obstacles highlight the complexities firms encounter in enhancing their RDI initiatives. Despite these challenges, a significant portion of businesses in Ireland are committed to boosting their RDI investment, reflecting a strong drive towards innovation and growth in the face of adversity.

Views of Multinational Corporations

Multinational corporations’ perspectives on Irish research and development investment (RDI) initiatives vary greatly, influencing their engagement with the country’s innovation landscape. While just over half of multinational corporations find Irish RDI support comparable to other countries, 13% hold negative views on Irish RDI grants and tax credits. Additionally, 36% of multinational corporations remain uncertain about the Irish RDI support system. These varying viewpoints impact the decisions of multinational corporations regarding their involvement in RDI activities in Ireland. Understanding and addressing the concerns and uncertainties raised by these corporations are vital for fostering a more conducive environment for innovation and attracting further RDI investments in the country. Ireland’s ranking as 22nd on the Global Innovation Index further underlines the importance of aligning multinational corporations’ perspectives with national RDI strategies.

Global Innovation Index Rankings

How does Ireland’s ranking on the Global Innovation Index reflect its position in the global innovation landscape? Ireland holds the 22nd position on the Global Innovation Index, showcasing its commitment to fostering innovation. While leading countries like Switzerland, Sweden, the US, the UK, and the Netherlands top the index, Ireland’s ranking demonstrates its competitive stance in the global innovation scene. With over 75% of firms in Ireland planning to increase Research and Development Investment (RDI), the country is actively working towards enhancing its innovative capabilities. Challenges such as Artificial Intelligence (AI) integration and talent shortages are driving 77% of businesses to boost RDI spending, indicating a proactive approach towards addressing contemporary innovation hurdles.

Comparisons With Other Countries

Moreover, Ireland’s positioning on the Global Innovation Index prompts a comparative analysis with other countries regarding Research and Development Investment (RDI) support systems. Just over half of multinational corporations find Irish RDI support comparable to other countries, indicating a positive view. However, 13% of multinational corporations perceive Irish RDI grants and tax credits negatively, highlighting areas that may need improvement. Additionally, 36% of multinational corporations remain uncertain about the comparability of Irish RDI support, signaling a need for clearer communication and possibly enhancements in the support mechanisms. Ireland, currently ranking 22nd on the Global Innovation Index, can look towards leading countries such as Switzerland, Sweden, the US, the UK, and the Netherlands for insights and potential best practices in fostering RDI investment and innovation.


To sum up, the increase in research and development investment by firms in Ireland showcases a commitment to innovation and economic growth. Despite challenges such as AI implementation and talent shortages, businesses are prioritizing RDI activities to remain competitive. With a focus on enhancing innovation culture, Ireland is actively working towards driving advancements in various sectors and solidifying its position as a leader in research and development initiatives.

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