2011-2012 Academic Year
- On completion of her time in Trinity in September 2012, Dr Elaine Byrne has become the Irish expert to the European commission on corruption, based in Dublin.
- On 1 May 2012 Professor Michael Marsh delivered a public lecture under the heading 'Referendums: past and present', in the Henry Grattan series under the auspices of the Policy Institute. The lecture was preceded by the award of the presentation of the awards for the School's first Dermot McAleese Teaching Prize for teaching assistants in the school; the Political Science winner was Justin Leinaweaver, who is close to completion of his PhD thesis on 'Explaining the variation in state commitment to environmental treaties'. The awards are generously funded by alumni and were presented by the provost, Dr Patrick Prendergast.
- On 26 April 2012 Dr Elaine Byrne's book Political Corruption in Ireland 1922-2010: a crooked harp? was launched in the Keough Naughton Notre Dame Centre on Merrion Square in Dublin. The book is published by Manchester University Press, and its first print run had already sold out by the time of the launch. For an overview, see the Political Reform site. The book was launched by former Minister for Justice Michael McDowell, whose comments, particularly regarding concentration of media ownership, were widely reported.
Raj Chari, co-author of the book Regulating Lobbying: a Global Comparison (Manchester University Press, 2010), was invited to give expert evidence to the Political and Constitutional Reform Committee, House of Commons, on 26 April 2012. The Committee is scrutinising the British government’s proposals for introducing a statutory register of lobbyists in the UK. In almost two hours of questioning from the committee, Chari answered questions on lobbying regulations found in political systems from around the world and considered whether any existing models of regulation in other countries could be applicable to the UK. An audio recording of the evidence presented by Chari can be found on the UK Parliament Website.
- The Kellogg / Notre Dame award for best paper in comparative politics at the 2011 Mid-West Political Science Association conference has been given to Christian Houle, who also won the 2010 award - the first person to win this award two years running. It was presented at the MPSA's 2012 conference in Chicago.
- Dr Peter Stone's edited volume Lotteries in Public Life: a reader has been published by Imprint Academic of Exeter. This book collects fourteen of the most important of the papers on the use of lotteries to make public decisions, and offers a critical introduction tying them together.
- On 16 November 2011 Professor Ron Hill, emeritus fellow, was presented in Warsaw with a 'Medal for the Promotion of Tolerance' by the Ecumenical Foundation 'Tolerance'.
- Pictures right show front and rear of the medal. On left: Professor Hill giving his speech of appreciation, and Professor Hill with Professor Jerzy Wiatr, doyen of Polish social science. To discuss this in light of comment on photos
- On Tuesday 18 October Pat Rabbitte TD, Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, launched How Ireland Voted 2011: the full story of Ireland's earthquake election, edited by two members of the department, Michael Gallagher and Michael Marsh. The book, which is published by Palgrave Macmillan, contains 13 chapters analysing various aspects of the dramatic general election of February 2011. The final chapter is by former EUI professor Peter Mair, who tragically died before the book was published, and in it he not only places the election result in a comparative context but also raises the question of whether the external constraints on Irish governments mean that Ireland has now become a ‘democracy without choices’.
- The department is pleased to welcome two new members of staff. Dr Tom Pegram and Dr Peter Stone both joined the department in September 2011 and are teaching at undergraduate and postgraduate level. Full details can be found on the Staff page.
- Dr Irene O'Daly, who taught in the department 2010-11, has moved to a post-doctoral position at the University of Leiden.
- In September 2011 Prof Michael Marsh stepped down from the position of Vice-Provost at the completion of his term and resumed his responsibilities as Dean of the Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences until the end of his term of office in June 2012.
- The department's executive officer 2008-11, Martin Hooper, has moved upstairs to become School administrative officer. He made a great contribution to the department and we wish him every success in his more elevated position. He is replaced in Room 5.02 by Jessie Smith, formerly of the School of Business.
- A number of PhD theses have recently been successfully defended, adding to the growing list of theses to come out of the department’s PhD programme. A full list of successful graduates can be found on the department’s web site.