Dialogue on the Future Funding of Higher Education in Ireland

Last September the Royal Irish Academy hosted the Dialogue on the Future Funding of Higher Education in Ireland, which was convened to feed into the Academy’s submission to the Cassells Expert Group on the Future Funding Options for Higher Education in Ireland. 

The report is now available to view online here

(Or attached at the end of this article.)

This paper finds that a further investment of circa €1bn per annum is needed to maintain and develop the quality of the higher education system. This paper proposes:

  • A 25-30% increase in academic staff to revert the student - staff ratio to a credible 16:1.
  • That an emergency public capital investment fund of €580m per annum is established to address the depleted capital stock and rising student numbers in higher education.
  • That the cost of further investment in higher education should be borne by its key stakeholders notably the state, students and the institutions themselves.
  • That the Student Contribution Charge should be replaced with a new Student Fee and Support Mechanism which would offer students the option of deferred payment through an income contingent loan and the opportunity to borrow to cover living costs associated with participating in higher education.

If you have any questions or queries on this report, please contact the Policy and International Relations Manager, Paul Lynam at p.lynam@ria.ie.


Yours Sincerely,

Peter Kennedy

Policy and International Relations Secretary  

Royal Irish Academy – Ireland's leading body of experts in the sciences and humanities 
19 Dawson Street, Dublin, D02 HH58, Ireland. Switch: +353 1 6762570  www.ria.ie