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Minister Heydon launches new research call for short- to medium-term policy and strategic needs

Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine with special responsibility for research and innovation Martin Heydon T.D, has today announced the establishment of a new pilot research initiative.

The ‘Policy and Strategic Studies Research Call’, or PSSRC, will support research that expands the evidence base for the Department, informing and supporting the development of policies across the agri-food, forest, and biobased sectors.

In tandem with announcing the establishment of the PSSRC, Minister Heydon also announced the launch of the first research call under this new initiative and he invited all eligible Research Performing Organisations (RPOs) to submit research proposals aligned to the topics specified in the call.

Minister Heydon stated “I am delighted to announce this new pilot research initiative and to see the immediate launch of the first Policy and Strategic Studies Research Call on 14th September 2022. Sound science is at the heart of everything we do and research is essential for providing the evidence and knowledge base for the development of policies and schemes and services, of benefit to the agri-food, forestry and bioeconomy sectors. The twenty topics in this Call have been identified by my Department to address immediate strategic policy needs. They range from climate, pesticides and forestry to animal health and welfare, the bioeconomy, and women in farming.”

Continuing, the Minister said “The Programme for Government and Food Vision 2030 highlight the need for support and investment in research. This new initiative will mean that we can be more agile in how we fund research, particularly for more urgent issues facing the Department and the wider agri-food sector. I strongly encourage Irish researchers to examine the broad range of topics in this Call and to submit relevant proposals.”


Notes for the Editor

More information about the PSSRC initiative and the 2022 PSSRC is available from the “Research News and Events” section of the DAFM website


The Policy and Strategic Studies Research Strand


  • DAFM updated its research programme in 2021 by replacing the three strands of FIRM, Stimulus and COFORD with five new strands, one of which is the Strategic Studies Strand. This strand is designed to provide a more flexible funding vehicle capable of addressing mainly policy issues more rapidly whilst still requiring scientific rigour. More information can be found here:
  • The initial Call under this programme will be run on a pilot basis and may subsequently be rolled out through further open Calls based on specific topics identified by DAFM to address immediate or short- to medium-term strategic/policy needs.
  • Projects can be up to 1 or 2 years in duration
  • The PSSRC is a “public good” competitive research call and the process, along with relevant outputs, will be widely published and made freely available in line with state aid rules and the principles of open science.


The 2022 PSSRC Call

  • The first call under the PSSRC opens on 14 September 2022 at 12:00 and invites eligible Research Performing Organisations (RPOs) from Ireland to submit research proposals aligned to specified call topics. Call documents can be found in the “Research News and Events” section of the DAFM website
  • Research proposals should be submitted through the DAFM FlexiGrant online submission portal. The deadline for submissions is 17th October 2022 at 16:00.
  • More details will be provided to all potential applicants via an informational Webinar hosted by the DAFM Research Division on 22nd September 2022 at 10:30am. Please register at the link:
  • Financial support for the 2022 PSSRC Call is being provided through the DAFM Research Programme