The Royal Irish Academy/Acadamh Ríoga na hÉireann champions research. We identify and recognise Ireland’s world class researchers. We support scholarship and promote awareness of how science and the humanities enrich our lives and benefit society. We believe that good research needs to be promoted, sustained and communicated. The Academy is run by a Council of its members. Membership is by election and considered the highest academic honour in Ireland.

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Our new President

18 April 2017

Professor Michael Peter Kennedy, a world expert in wireless communications, is the 56th President of the Royal Irish Academy.

Professor of Microelectronic Engineering at UCC, he succeeds historian, Professor Mary E. Daly who was elected as the Academy's first female President in 2014. He is the first President from UCC.

Professor Kennedy has said he is ‘Honoured to be elected President and that he sees the all-island Academy playing a key advisory role in Ireland's response to the challenges and opportunities of Brexit’.

A graduate of UCD and the University of California at Berkeley, Kennedy is one of Ireland's leading engineers whose research has been funded by Science Foundation Ireland and the Irish Research Council. 

He received the inaugural Parsons Award in Engineering Sciences in 2001 and was elected as a member of the Academy in 2004. He won UCC's Invention of the Year Award in 2011 and led the development of the US-Ireland Research Innovation Awards in 2014/15, an initiative of the Royal Irish Academy and the American Chamber of Commerce Ireland.

Professor Patrick M. Shannon

Professor Patrick M. Shannon was also elected today as Secretary. Professor Shannon is the founder of the Marine and Petroleum Geology research group in UCD. His main research is in the areas of basin analysis and marine and petroleum geology, with special reference to the Irish offshore.

Past presidents of the Royal Irish Academy have included: TK Whitaker (1985-7) and James Dooge (1987-90).

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