MATRIX - the Northern Ireland Science Industry Panel

Matrix is an industry-led panel advising government and informing academia and industry on the commercial exploitation of research and development (R&D) and science and technology. The panel produces regular, in-depth reports which outline the work, findings and recommendations of its specialist sub panels. These reports are an invaluable resource for anyone interested in how new technologies and market opportunities can be developed within the Northern Ireland economy and beyond.


Chaired by Robert Hill, the panel is comprised of business and academic leaders representing a broad spectrum of Northern Ireland’s science and technology sectors. The panel is supported by a small secretariat team based in the Department for the Economy.

See the full panel at: The Matrix website - panel

What Matrix does

The Matrix panel commissions research, analysis and studies, to help DfE build the evidence base for future science and R&D policies within wider innovation policy.

The Matrix panel advises in three main areas:

  • key R&D and science and technology issues affecting business innovation
  • the emerging strategic technology priorities impacting on Northern Ireland’s economy
  • the promotion of a culture of innovation and the importance of R&D and science and technology in the future, particularly with business and in regard to commercial exploitation activities.

Find out more about what Matrix does: Matrix website - about Matrix

Matrix reports

The first Matrix report, a technology capability report and five overarching Horizon Panel reports were launched by the Minister on 8 October 2008. These reports focussed on the following five sectors:

  • advanced manufacturing
  • advanced materials
  • information and communications technology (ICT)
  • agri-food
  • life and health sciences

Since then, Matrix have produced a range of reports on a variety of emerging and established technology sectors and cross cutting themes. Their current workplan includes foresighting reports into the opportunities the City Deals projects provides to the Life and Health Sciences sector and Advanced Wireless Networks.

See all current sectors: 

Matrix’s latest published report highlights the opportunities of advanced wireless networks. You can see all the Matrix reports as well as selection of reports they have used for research in their online library.


Member appointments

In July 2024, Matrix launched a competition to appoint six new industry members to join its panel:

Further information

Matrix has a comprehensive outreach and communications programme and supports several events which promote STEM skills including the Northern Ireland Science Festival and The Northern Ireland Airshow . Matrix is also a member of the Heads of Horizon Scanning Network and the Northern Ireland All Party STEM Group.

Matrix has an events calendar which brings together all the science & technology events in Northern Ireland. It collates all live SBRIs and other funding competitions available to NI businesses. Matrix also sends out a regular briefing email to subscribers.  You can follow Matrix on Twitter at @MATRIX_NI

For more information contact the Secretariat:

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