Conference call for papers and advance notice

University College Cork, March 28th 2014

Since 2008 Irish society and the Irish welfare state have undergone enormous upheaval and change.  Poverty, unemployment, inequality and related social problems have all increased.   Significant areas of the welfare state are being re-shaped with considerable implications for how social policies are designed and delivered and for their effects. The pace and nature of reform has been substantially altered with the demise of social partnership and three years of policy making under the Troika. Yet this crisis has also instigated campaigns of resistance and alternative proposals to Ireland’s existing welfare and economic model. This conference aims to take stock of these developments and we invite papers that explore any of these and related themes.  Possible topics include, but are not limited to:

  • The politics of Irish welfare reform – retrenchment, restructuring, resilience, resistance.
  • The impact of welfare state change on particular social groups – unemployed people, migrants, young people, children, families, older people etc.
  • The effect of change on particular areas of social policy – social protection, education, health, housing, etc.
  • Shifting approaches to welfare policy: modernisation, redistribution, privatisation, activation, social investment etc.
  • Resistance, critique and alternatives to austerity.
  • Voluntary and community groups in the crisis and its aftermath.
  • Crisis and contemporary welfare states, Ireland in a European/comparative context.
  • Irish welfare state futures, challenges, prospects.

We warmly welcome papers from academics, post-graduate students, voluntary organisations, and community and policy advocacy groups.  The abstract deadline is January 31st 2014. For details on how to submit an abstract please visit:

The full conference programme will be available at by the end of February.

Attendance at the conference is free but registration is required.  To register please e mail to confirm your attendance.

Fiona Dukelow


struggles in commonWhat is the political significance of the commons today?



DIT Mountjoy Square, Dublin 1

Struggles in Common: A day of talks and discussions organised by the provisional university featuring acclaimed historian Peter Linebaugh, author of The Magna Carta Manifesto

This event is open to the public and admission is free but booking is advised.


Across Europe, the dominant response to the financial crisis has been an attack on social life. National governments have adopted policies of severe austerity, resulting in cuts across all aspects of social welfare (health, education, payments to the unemployed) as well as the privatization of public resources (third level education, water, transport). While these policies are carried out by elected governments, they reflect the erosion of democracy and the concentration of power in the hands of financial and European elites.

Against these attacks, people have sought to defend their social rights and the non-market value of vital public resources and services. Recognizing the double crisis in the economy and democracy, alternative social and political experiments have thus emerged. These experiments have recalled the history of the commons and the radical promise it holds for a future beyond the state and capitalism.

This day-long event brings together collectives and individuals involved in excavating the history and contemporary significance of the commons. The purpose is to share our experiences and knowledge in order to develop the concept of the commons in a manner which is directly related to the present political conjecture. The event includes a talk by acclaimed historian Peter Linebaugh and contributions from research collectives based in Spain, Ireland, USA and the U.K.

Location: DIT, Mountjoy Square, Dublin 1

For more information:

Speakers include:

Peter Linebaugh is Professor of History at the University of Toledo. He is the author of The Magna Carta Manifesto and co-author (with Marcus Rediker) of the Many-Headed Hydra: The Hidden History of the Revolutionary Atlantic. He is also a member of the Midnight Notes Collective.

Amanda Huron is a researcher and activist based in Washington D.C. She has been working with housing cooperatives in Washington D.C. as well as an “undocumented” (i.e. unlicensed) community radio station.

Observatorio Metropolitano are an activist research group formed by activists and professionals from different fields. They provide critical analyses of the fundamental lines of transformation in the contemporary metropolis. Their most recent book is Crisis and Revolution in Europe.

Plan C is a UK based political organisation made up of people who are politically active in their workplaces and communities. They work together to support each other, amplify their struggles and think strategically.

Seoidín O’Sullivan is an artist and educator. Her case studies focus on people joining together in action to protect or develop an aspect of their local commons. Her work addresses issues of land use, lost knowledge and biodiversity.

The Free Association are a writing collective loosely based in Leeds. They are the authors of Moments of Excess.

The Provisional University are an autonomous research and educational collective based in Dublin. They carry out research and organize educational activities which strengthen social movements and create discussion outside the academic institution.

Update: Please note that the venue for this event has been changed from O’Connell House to DIT, Mountjoy Square, Dublin 1. 

As announced on the Irish Economy blog.  Conference registration is free and anyone can attend.

Details of the fourth in the series of conferences on the Irish economy are below. Further details of talks will be posted here in advance.

Conference on Irish Economic Policy


January 27th

Clarion Hotel IFSC

On January 27th 2012, the Geary Institute will run an event on the future of Irish economy policy in Dublin. An era of unprecedented growth followed by a dramatic economic collapse is giving way to several years of sluggish growth. The main theme of the conference will be the development of more intelligent economic policy that enables substantial development even in the context of a tightened fiscal and monetary environment. The conference will take place over the course of the full day, with parallel sessions addressing employment, innovation, education and related themes. The conference aims to provide a forum for new ideas on the conduct of Irish economic policy, including the extent to which academic economics and related disciplines can make a bigger contribution to the conduct of economic policy in Ireland, and the extent to which policy can be designed more effectively.  The conference organisers are Liam Delaney, Colm Harmon and Stephen Kinsella. Please email to register attendance: There is no registration charge.

9.00 – 9.15

Registration and Opening




Chair: Minister Joan Burton

David Bell (Stirling)

P O’Connell/S McGuiness (ESRI)

Aedin Doris (Maynooth)

Chair: Stephen Kinsella (UL)

Ronan Lyons (Oxford)

Michelle Norris (UCD)

Rob Kitchin (NUIM)




Economics and Evaluation


Chair: Donal De Butleir

Robert Watt (D. PER)

Colm Harmon (UCD)

Third Speaker TBC


Chair: Kevin Denny (UCD)

Orla Doyle (UCD)

Alan Barrett (ESRI)

Brendan Walsh (UCD)




Fiscal Policy

Competition and Sectoral Policy

Chair: Dan O’Brien

Philip Lane (TCD)

John McHale (NUIG)

Seamus Coffey(UCC)

Chair: Cathal Guiomard

Richard Tol, (Sussex)

John Fingleton (Office of Fair Trading)

Doug Andrew (former London airport regulator)

3.30 – 4pm



Banking and Euro

Chair: Constantin Gurdgiev (TCD)

Brian Lucey (TCD)

Colm McCarthy (UCD)

Frank Barry (TCD)

Rob Kitchin