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Industrialist makes largest ever Irish philanthropic donation

Industrialist makes largest ever Irish philanthropic donation

Trinity College Dublin (TCD) has announced plans for a €60 million new E3 Institute in Engineering, Energy and Environment that has been made possible with a major private philanthropic donation of €25 million by the Naughton family.

The Naughton Foundation, established by the founder of the Glen Dimplex Group, Dr Martin Naughton, and his wife, Carmel, has a track of record of making large donations to education and the arts but this gift is thought to be the largest by Irish-born philanthropists.

In addition to the Naughton gift, significant philanthropic support was also given by Dr Beate Schuler, Dr Paul Johnston with his wife Theresa Johnston, and Mike Peirce.

An additional €15 million is being made available by the Department of Education and Skills. This funding will be provided through the Higher Education Authority (HEA).

Photo: Kieran Harnett

Dr Martin and Mrs Carmel Naughton at the presentation of the 2016 Naughton Foundation Scholarship awards held in Trinity College Dublin. Photo: Kieran Harnett

Speaking on the occasion of the announcement of the €25 million gift Dr Martin Naughton, said: “Ireland will need increasing numbers of engineers, scientists, IT specialists among other STEM graduates  who will be able to work together to tackle the big  global challenges  we face today. Throughout my life in business I have been fortunate to have been able to play my part in effecting positive societal change.”

Carmel and Martin Naughton were named National Philanthropists of the Year in 2016 by the Community Foundation for Ireland in recognition of their generosity and leadership in supporting the arts, education and the promotion of engineering, science and technology in Irish society.

In 2007 the Naughtons made what is considered to be the largest ever gift to a Northern Irish arts institution, donating £1 million pounds to the Lyric, Northern Ireland’s only full time producing theatre.



Main image: Trinity College Dublin by Marianone on


Howard Lake is a digital fundraising entrepreneur. Publisher of UK Fundraising, the world's first web resource for professional fundraisers, since 1994. Trainer and consultant in digital fundraising. Founder of Fundraising Camp and co-founder of Research massive growth in giving.

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