As Northern Ireland moves beyond its centenary and the 25th anniversary of the Good Friday Agreement seasoned academics Desmond Bell and Liam O’Dowd pose the question of what the future holds for NI. Is re-unification on the horizon? Or, will this perverse political formation be able to reinvent itself within the constraints of the union with Great Britain? Will the GFA deliver on its promise of bringing not only peace but stability to the region? To address these pressing questions the editors have invited a range of authors and researchers with expertise in Irish history and politics and in key policy areas like education, health, social security, political economy, ecology, sport and culture. They explore the challenge of unification not simply as a constitutional option but as a broader political project entailing the concerted reconstruction of the institutional fabric of the island.
Dr Desmond Bell was born in Derry and educated at the University of Warwick where he gained a BA and Phd in sociology and philosophy. After teaching at Ruskin College Oxford, he has held a number of chairs in Film and Media Studies in Britain and Ireland combining his academic work with his practice as an award-winning film-maker.
Dr Liam O’Dowd was born in Mayo and educated at NUI Galway and Southern Illinois University, where he gained a PhD Sociology. He held a chair in Sociology at Queen’s University Belfast where he was the Director of the Centre for International Borders Research.
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