Business Education

‘Tangent’ Aims To Be Dublin’s New Home for Entrepreneurs and Innovators

‘Tangent, Trinity’s Ideas Workspace’ hopes to build upon Trinity’s position as a European leader in innovation and entrepreneurship and Dublin as a location of choice for technology investment and new start-up creation.

Innovation experts and student entrepreneurs gathered for the launch of ‘Tangent, Trinity’s Ideas Workspace’. This exciting new initiative at Trinity College Dublin, supported by Bank of Ireland, will provide cutting-edge innovation and entrepreneurship education; start-up company acceleration programmes; innovation and entrepreneurship community events; and supports for fledgling to mature entrepreneurs all across Ireland and beyond.

Tangent will change the shape of how we educate, mentor and inspire our students, graduates and start-up companies. It will act as a “test-bed” for new city-wide innovation initiatives and a new meeting place for the entrepreneurship community. Tangent is a central part of Trinity’s innovation strategy that includes plans for a new campus at Grand Canal Quay and the establishment of a globally competitive innovation district in Dublin.

At a time when two thirds of all new jobs are being created by companies less than five years old and new technologies are disrupting mature businesses it is critical for businesses to empower students, graduates, start-up companies and multi-national corporates with the skills and understanding to succeed in this changing world.

Tangent will assist companies in defining the shape of how they educate, mentor and inspire our students, graduates and start-up companies. Tangent will act a as “test-bed” for new city wide innovation initiatives and a new meeting place for the entrepreneurship community.

Announcing the initiative, Chief Innovation & Enterprise Officer at Trinity College Dublin, Dr Diarmuid O’Brien said: “Innovation and entrepreneurship is critical for Ireland’s economic competitiveness. ‘Tangent, Trinity’s Ideas Workspace,’ will build on the success of Trinity as a European leader in innovation and entrepreneurship enabling the leaders of the future. Our transformative learning environment will inspire and empower our students and graduates, to create new enterprises and businesses at the forefront of Europe’s innovation ecosystem.”

Provost of Trinity College Dublin, Dr Patrick Prendergast said: “Trinity is committed to providing an environment that supports and encourages innovation at all levels across the University, promoting entrepreneurship as an engine for economic growth, and for social and cultural development. It is a core element of Trinity’s strategy, ensuring that we create value from our leading research and equip our students and graduates with the ability to drive innovation and thrive in a world of constant change.”

Provost of Trinity College Patrick Prendergast with student Entrepreneur announcement.
Picture Colm Mahady / Fennells – Copyright© Fennell Photography 2018

‘Tangent, Trinity’s Ideas Workspace,’ caters for all stages of innovation and entrepreneurship and will help mentor, encourage and challenge our next generation of entrepreneurs. Examples of new programmes Tangent will run include the first ever undergraduate certificate in innovation and entrepreneurship; a national roll-out of postgraduate courses; and pan-European early-stage business accelerator programmes.

  • The new Undergraduate Certificate in Innovation and Entrepreneurship, the first of its kind in Ireland offers students from all disciplines across the University additional educational and experiential opportunities to learn ideation methodologies and fulfil their entrepreneurial ambitions in tandem with their degree.
  • Students have the opportunity to engage with entrepreneurs, business leaders and industry mentors in an informal and dynamic learning environment. They work on true-life innovation industry projects and design creative solutions for factual challenges faced by organisations.
  • ‘Tangent, Trinity’s Ideas Workspace,’ is also rolling out a new Regional Postgraduate Certificate in Innovation and Entrepreneurship, in collaboration with the Higher Education Authority (HEA), Bank of Ireland, Local Enterprise Offices, and Business Incubation Centres. Commencing in 2019 the national certificate programme awarded by Trinity College will be delivered through the Bank of Ireland Workbenches in Dublin, Cork, Limerick and Galway.
  • Piloting in 2018, Tangent’s Digital Health Validator Accelerator programme supported 10 European healthcare startups through workshops, networking events, 1-2-1 mentoring, and innovation and new venture creation masterclasses. 2019 will see the programme scale to 15 early stage digital health ideas from across Europe coming to Trinity to accelerate their startups.

Tangent will be housed in a state-of-the-art space that is currently being constructed and will be co-located with the new Trinity Business School on Pearse Street which will open in May 2019. It is being specifically designed to foster the creation of ideas, with flexible workspaces and event space providing for co-working and innovation for all. It will also provide an interface between Trinity and the bustling innovation ecosystem on its doorstep, with a view to establishing Ireland as a thriving and mature startup ecosystem.

About Innovation & Entrepreneurship at Trinity:

  • Trinity is 1st in Europe for producing Entrepreneurs* and is the only European university to feature in the world top 50. From 2006-2018, Trinity alumni produced 232 entrepreneurs, formed 212 venture-backed companies, and raised capital of approximately US $3.26 billion  or €2.81 billion (Pitchbook Universities Report, 2018/2019)
  • 1/5: Trinity has produced more spin-out companies than any other Irish university, many of which have grown to be leading companies e.g. Opsona, Havok, IdentiGEN, Iona Technologies. Trinity now accounts for one-fifth of all spin-out companies from Irish higher education institutions.
  • 474: Trinity has signed 474 industry collaborative research contract in the last five years. Rising from 24 in 2012 to 156 in 2016. Partners include global leaders across all sectors including Intel, Huawei, AbbVie and Johnson & Johnson.
  • €60m: Trinity, in partnership with UCD, established Ireland’s first venture fund with an exclusive focus of commercialising research from higher education institutes.
  • 100: Over 100 new ventures have been created to commercialise Trinity research.  These companies have raised investment of > €0.5 billion, had exports of > €1.3 billion, and have commercialised 300 products.
  • 25th: Trinity has drawn down more funding from the Horizon 2020 programme than any other Irish HEI, and are ranked 25th from over 1400 participating higher education institutions across Europe.
  • 50%: Trinity has won 50% of all of Ireland’s ERC awards during H2020. ERC awards are the most prestigious research grants in Europe for individual academics.
  • 70: Trinity’s student accelerator LaunchBox has supported 70 companies in its first six years. These alumni LaunchBox companies have raised > €6.2M in investment between them including FoodCloud, Touchtech Payments, Artomatix and Equinemedi Records.
  • 112: Trinity has licensed 112 technologies from its technology portfolio in the last five years [2012-2016] to globally leading companies such as Google, Samsung, Intel, GSK, Microsoft, Thomas Swan, Hewlett Packard and EMD Millipore.

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