European Project: IRMA


The Inter-countries Research for Manufacturing Advancement (IRMA) is a European Union (EU) sponsored research project. Key data from the 27 EU member countries was assimilated and synthesised as part of the project. The following sections provide more details on:

Final Summary Report: Analysis of the UK Manufacturing Engineering Sector
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Goal & Objectives

IRMA aimed to produce evidence based research for assisting and guiding the European Commission's Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA) in promoting excellence, efficiency and access to higher education institutes (HEIs) within the manufacturing engineering sector.


IRMA has been funded by the new Lifelong Learning Programme (LLP) of the EACEA. With a budget of €7,000 million for the period 2007-2013, LLP is supporting the creation of improved and better lifelong learning opportunities for the European citizens.

Approach & Results

IRMA took a three-dimensional approach by actively involving the key stakeholder groups, namely, Enterprises, Universities and Intermediaries* from across the 27 EU member countries.

Through a rigorous research and analysis methodology, IRMA provided deeper understanding of the key factors such as current and future role, competency and knowldege requirements, supply and demand factors, as well as key pointers towards future advancement and competitiveness of European manufacturing industry through HEIs.

*Intermediaries could be enterprise and technology incubators, academic spin-offs, institutional agencies such as business support organisations, etc.

Wider Benefits

Participation in the IRMA surveys provided opportunity for the stakeholder groups to positively and directly influence the future direction, policy and HEIs research agenda of the European Union.