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Call Closed: Marine Institute SMART Research Vessel Bursaries 2020

In response to HSE Covid 19 public health advice bursaries will not be available on the WESPAS and UWTV surveys.  The availabity of bursaries on the Celtic Sea Herring Acoustic Survey and Irish Groundfish Surveys will be reviewed closer to the survey dates in line with HSE advice.

The Marine Institute in collaboration with the Strategic Marine Alliance for Research and Training (SMART) is offering 22  bursaries on dedicated FEAS surveys in 2020 on the Celtic Explorer and Celtic Voyager.

Bursaries include groundfish, acoustic and underwater TV surveys (UWTV) on 13 survey legs between February and December 2020 on the shelf waters of the Irish EEZ

Successful applicants will receive a “Student at Sea Bursary” at a fixed rate of €95 per survey night. Participants will receive hands on training in data collection and sampling techniques, be fully integrated into the survey work programme and make an important contribution to achieving the survey goals. In so doing they gain valuable sea going experience and assist the Marine Institute in building the necessary capacity for offshore research and monitoring.

Advantages of Participating in Research Vessel Bursaries  

  • Gain seagoing experience
  • Integration in a team of experienced marine scientists on a dedicated research survey
  • Learn multidisciplinary and topic specific field skills and competencies
  • Recognition for Continuous Professional Development in marine scien
  • Establish new professional contacts and develop networks
  • Participation in bursaries will be recognised as CPD by the organisers

Requirements for Participation

  • Applicants should be marine oriented graduates, postgraduates, researchers or practitioners in marine oriented enterprises.
  • Applicants must hold current ENG11 medical and Personal Survival Techniques (PST STCW95) certificates.
  • Applicants should have some prior sea going experience.

Please note ENG11 medical certificates must be renewed every two years and PST certification renewed every five years. Information on obtaining medical and sea-survival certificates are available at the Marine Institute's Vessel User Information page.

Participation in surveys is by agreement with the survey Chief Scientist.


Explore the available surveys at these links:


Applications are invited from graduates, postgraduates, early stage researchers and practitioners from Higher Education Institutes, Research Agencies and Marine related enterprises across the Island of Ireland.

Applications to join the SMART Marine Institute Research Vessel Bursaries 2020 are through the online application form here.

Further Information

For further information about any aspect of the programme please contact

Indicative survey locations and transects are at this page.

Read participant's blogs at

Marine Institute

The Marine Institute is the national agency responsible for Marine Research, Technology Development and Innovation (RTDI). The Marine Institute seeks to assess and realise the economic potential of Ireland's 220 million acre marine resource; promote the sustainable development of marine industry through strategic funding programmes and essential scientific services; and safeguard our marine environment through research and environmental monitoring.

The Institute was set up under the 1991 Marine Institute Act with the following general functions: 

"to undertake, to co-ordinate, to promote and to assist in marine research and development and to provide such services related to marine research and development, that in the opinion of the Institute will promote economic development and create employment and protect the environment. " - Marine Institute Act, 1991.


The Strategic Marine Alliance for Research and Training (SMART) is a marine science partnership that builds capacity in offshore research, monitoring and resource development by providing structured research vessel access to students, researchers and marine oriented professionals.  Key academic and research partners within the alliance include Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology (GMIT), INFORMAR, NUI Galway, University College Cork (UCC),  Maynooth University and the Marine Institute. SMART is based in GMIT at the Marine and Freshwater Research Centre (MFRC).

Grant-aided shiptime is carried out under the Strategic Marine Research & Innovation Agenda of the Integrated Marine Plan for Ireland (Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth) under the Marine Research sub-programme of the Irish Government.