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- PublicationImplementation issues and the pursuit of a settlement in Northern IrelandAs is well known, several efforts have been made since 1973 to place relations between communities in Northern Ireland, between North and South, and between Ireland and Great Britain on a new institutional footing. These efforts have been designed to promote a conventional political approach to conflict, and to sideline paramilitarism. But translating painfully negotiated settlements into functioning political structures has been a continuing challenge. This paper explores this process, and seeks to explain the modest success of political leaders in converting ambitious blueprints into sustainable institutions.
- PublicationBreaking Patterns of Conflict in Northern Ireland: New Perspectives(Routledge, 2016-04-14)
;This volume focuses on the changes in the state frameworks, laws and practices that ac-companied, facilitated and encouraged the process of settlement which led to the 1998 Good Friday Agreement, and the later transformation of institutions and political relations in Northern Ireland and also on these islands. It explores the interrelations of different levels of state and institutional change. These range from the broadest concepts of sovereignty and ideology, through elite political assumptions and strategies, through inter-state coordination practices, to the actual impact of large changes on particular institutions and laws – the impact in such areas as the new British-Irish institutional architecture, and new legal norms, such as those governing broadcasting. In this introductory article, we review the broad field that the special issue addresses, we indicate how it is tackled in the articles that follow, and we discuss the data sources that are available to support this analysis. 238
- PublicationThe operation of the North-South implementation bodies(University College Dublin. Institute for British-Irish Studies, 2006)
; ;This paper examines the functioning of the North-South implementation bodies formally created in 1999 over the first five years of their existence. It reviews the political and administrative difficulties that delayed their establishment as functioning institutions, and notes the different pace at which they have consequently evolved. It reviews the performance of each body to date, and assesses the extent to which the body has responded to the issue it was designed to resolve. 1492
- PublicationSelecting Irish government ministers : an alternative pathway?(Institute of Public Administration of Ireland, 2010-12)The debate on political reform in Ireland focuses on certain clearly identified targets: the size of the Dáil, the existence of the Senate, and the electoral system, for example. This article considers an area that is rather more important for the policy making and implementation process: the quality of the government, and the mechanics of the appointment of government ministers. It draws attention to Ireland’s dependence on parliamentarians—almost unique in Europe—and reviews the constitutional and political history of the Irish system of ministerial appointments. It highlights the position in other parliamentary democracies, where ministers are not normally required to be parliamentarians; in many countries, indeed, ministers are prohibited from being parliamentarians. The article argues that a reconsideration of the dual ministerial – Dáil deputy mandate is now appropriate.
- PublicationThe North-South institutions : from blueprint to reality(University College Dublin. Institute for British-Irish Studies, 2002)This paper examines the extent and nature of institutional change arising from the Good Friday agreement in terms of the North-South dimension. The paper adopts an architectural analogy in its analysis of these developments, focusing on four main questions. What is the purpose of the institutional change? What has been the blueprint or plan for change? How has this blueprint been translated into reality? How has the emerging reality served the purpose for which it was established? The paper concludes with an analysis of the impact of institutional change in the all Ireland context after the Good Friday agreement on the character of state sovereignty.
- PublicationA political profile of Protestant minorities in EuropeThis paper uses a large volume of data—in particular, surveys—to explore the character of Protestant identity in contemporary European states. It distinguishes three contexts. First, in the Nordic and certain adjacent states, the dominance of Protestantism was complete, but more recent secularisation has provoked a reaction from Christian parties which enjoy strong support from active Protestants. Second, in certain states which in the past were predominantly Protestant, and where the ethos of the state was aggressively so, a significant Catholic minority was counter-mobilised politically; but as the dominant state-building parties became increasingly secular, committed Protestants reacted in different ways, including the formation of splinter parties (as in the Netherlands and Switzerland) or working within the traditional parties (as in Great Britain and Germany). Third, in a few states there has traditionally been a small Protestant minority which has played a significant role in national development, but in these cases (mainly successor states to the Habsburg monarchy) decades of communist rule have largely obliterated what might have been distinctive patterns of political behaviour. The paper explores variation in group identity patterns and in attitudes towards the state in those cases for which appropriate survey data are available, and devotes particular attention to the position within the United Kingdom, where religion has played a prominent role in the state- and nation-building process.
- PublicationDoes Ireland need a constitution commission?(Institute of Public Administration, 2008)
- PublicationEthnic conflict and the two-state solution : the Irish experience of partition(University College Dublin. Institute for British-Irish Studies, 2004)Although the partition of Ireland in 1921 was only one of several in which this strategy was adopted as Britain withdrew politically from territories formerly under its rule, it was marked by a number of distinctive features. This paper examines and seeks to interpret some of these features. It begins by looking at the roots of partition in the history of Ireland’s long political relationship with Great Britain, and explores the emergence of partition as a major question in the early twentieth century. Following a general assessment of the impact of partition on the two parts of Ireland, it turns to the manner in which partition survived as a political issue up to 1998. Some brief remarks comparing the Irish with the Palestinian experience are made in conclusion.
- PublicationThe future of the North-South bodies(University College Dublin. Institute for British-Irish Studies, 2005)The North-South bodies established in 1999 represent the third attempt since partition to establish a structured, formal basis for cooperation between the two parts of the island. This paper looks at the bodies from three perspectives. First, it examines the general historical background: the prehistory of Irish partition, the development of partition up to 1998, and the new system agreed at that point. Second, it provides a brief overview of the present arrangements for the North-South bodies. Third, it seeks to generalise about the future prospects of the bodies by examining the presumed long-term goals and priorities of the British and Irish governments and of the Northern Irish parties.
- PublicationEthnic conflict and its resolution : the new Northern Ireland model(University College Dublin. Institute for British-Irish Studies, 2001)The agreement reached between the British and Irish governments and the Northern Irish political parties in April 1998 was a complex and subtle political document that built on experience in other societies and that itself has some capacity to serve as a model for others. This paper begins by examining the nature of the problem that the new settlement is designed to resolve, commenting briefly on the extent to which it shares common features with other cases of ethnic conflict. It proceeds by describing the contours of the process by which a successful accommodation was arrived at, and concludes with an analysis of the central features of the settlement. In addition to their three-part constitutional core, these included wide ranging compromises in the areas of equality and citizenship, rights, reform of policing and of the criminal justice system, prisoner release, and demilitarisation and decommis-sioning of paramilitary weapons.