‘Lost generations’? Taking the longer view on Northern Ireland migration

Dr Johanne Devlin Trew (Ulster) Between 2004 and 2008, immigration to Northern Ireland rose to unprecedented numbers and the issue of how the newcomers could be accommodated here became a ‘struggle’ for local authorities and featured prominently in the local media. Since then, however, immigration has declined significantly to the point where by 2012, Northern … Read more

Carbon, economic growth and unsustainability: the inevitable transition to a low carbon economy beyond GDP

Dr Philip O’Sullivan (OU) This seminar will focus on environmental economics and policy. It will present the case that, despite the recent global economic downturn and recession in the United Kingdom, the current economic policy response of expanding growth driven by fossil fuel production is actually unsustainable. Rather than being the answer to increased prosperity … Read more

Creating A Constructive Interface Between Community Planning and Land Use (Spatial) Planning

Professor Greg Lloyd and Gavan Rafferty (Ulster) With the emerging Local Government (Reform) Bill, Community Planning offers an innovative way to consider how public services are planned and delivered. In appreciating how this new function aligns with the main aspirations of the Programme for Government, Community Planning should be considered in relation to the wider … Read more

Where to next with the RPA?: Lessons from international developments in public service reform

Dr Muiris MacCarthaigh (QUB) As governments across the globe grapple with the effects of the global financial and economic crises, the issue of public service reform has re-emerged as a key ingredient in the restoration of public finances as well as public trust in government. The content of these reforms varies considerably, however, ranging from … Read more

Access to Justice Through Better Decision-Making

Grainne McKeever (Ulster) The process of welfare reform highlights the pressures on government agencies to deal with an increased number of claims, which has inevitably led to an increased number of individuals disputing the decisions made on their claims. A similar pattern is evident for other government agencies, including those responsible for making decisions on … Read more

Rural Primary School Partnerships, Sustainability and Social Cohesion

Dr Aideen Hunter, Dr Jessica Bates, Dr Alan McCully and Dr Una O’Connor (Ulster) This presentation will offer insight into the potential for co-operation between small controlled and maintained schools in adjacent rural areas. It will draw on the Primary Integrating/Enriching Education (PIEE) project (2010-13), which involves developing cross-community partnerships between small rural schools in … Read more

Beyond the ‘dreary steeples’? Reassessing the role of religion in Northern Ireland community divisions

Professor John Wolffe (OU) This presentation will examine the assumption that although the Northern Ireland community divide has been ‘sectarian’, it has not been ‘religious’. It will summarise research both on Protestant-Catholic tensions in Northern Ireland and elsewhere, and on the ways that ‘religion’ itself is understood in scholarly and popular discourse. Recent declines in … Read more

New and Shifting Populations in Belfast: Analysis and Impact

Dr Ian Shuttleworth and Professor Frank Gaffikin (QUB) It is often assumed that residential segregation in Northern Ireland always increases through time. However, early analyses of the 2011 Census showed that segregation fell between 2001 and 2011. This presentation will explore the possible population processes that have driven this change, and will discuss the impact … Read more

Legacies of Conflict: the evidence

Professor Mike Tomlinson (QUB) For all the discussion around the needs of victims and survivors, there are few established facts on the impact of the years of violent conflict on the population of Northern Ireland. Population-wide surveys of people’s experience of the conflict are rare. Drawing on the Poverty and Social Exclusion (PSE) survey (2012), … Read more

Fiscal Devolution Debates and the Future of the Barnett Formula

Professor Alan Trench (Ulster) The funding of the Northern Ireland Executive (and other devolved governments) has always been central to their ability to provide the public services for which they are responsible. It affects all policy areas, as well as being important in its own right. But since 2007 there have been debates in both … Read more