This paper gives a ‘discursive’ account of the contemporary development of nursing and midwifery research in the Republic of Ireland in the context of advancing professionalism. Initially, the paper views the landscape by placing research in the current framework of Irish nursing and midwifery. It then examines the map of our present location by documenting a baseline. It ascertains the signposts that are in place by exploring the strategic direction for development. Finally, it uses the compass to orienteer the route through the various obstacles by examining the challenges of the role of the joint appointee leading the implementation of the national Research Strategy for Nursing and Midwifery in Ireland.