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Irish School of Ecumenics

The Irish School of Ecumenics, is committed to the study and promotion of dialogue, peace and reconciliation in Ireland and other global contexts. ISE is recognised for its vigorous interdisciplinary approach to teaching, research and social engagement.

The M.Phil. courses in Intercultural Theology and Interreligious Studies; in International Peace Studies; and the Postgraduate Diploma in Conflict and Dispute Resolution Studies, are based in Dublin, while the M.Phil. course in Conflict Resolution and Reconciliation is based in Belfast. Individual modules address the intersecting fields of theology, ecumenics and world religions, politics, international relations, peace and reconciliation, ethics and social theory.

Theoretical and applied research are at the heart of all work undertaken at ISE, where students and staff engage with critical issues currently facing global societies, governments, faith communities and international institutions and NGOs committed to the promotion of peace and reconciliation.

Intercultural and Interreligious Studies:

This taught masters programme explores the complex realities of intercultural and interreligious encounter. Drawing on a wide range of scholarship - including World Christianity Studies, Comparative Theology, Ecumenics, Intercultural Ethics, Ecumenical Theology, Political Science and Religious Studies - the programme enables participants to specialize in one of four fields of intercultural theology and interreligious studies: Christian Ecumenical Theologies, World Christianity and Intercultural Theology, Comparative Theology and Interreligious Studies, and Religions and Ethics in a Pluralist World. Students take 60 ECTS from the taught modules, and undertake research for a 30 ECTS dissertation.
Please see Intercultural Theology & Interreligious Studies for further details.

International Peace Studies:

International Peace Studies programme is the longest-running of its kind on the island. Our students are immersed in a cutting-edge programme of study that examines the causes and consequences of war and armed conflict, with a view to understanding how to achieve sustainable peace. Courses draw on perspectives from politics and political science, international relations, philosophy, sociology, ethics and conflict resolution, allowing students to engage critically with the social, political and economic issues associated with peace and violence. We provide students with the opportunity to engage with those working in conflict resolution and peace-building, by providing an internship module, a mediation Spring school, field trips to Belfast and UN Geneva and various guest lectures from experienced diplomats and NGO officials, throughout the year.
Please see International Peace Studies for further details.

Conflict Resolution and Reconciliation:

Trinity's M.Phil. in Conflict Resolution and Reconciliation is an innovative programme which is taught at our specialist cross-border School in Belfast. The programme allows students to take a broader approach to Conflict Resolution and Reconciliation, or a distinctive specialisation in either area.

The course combines academic study and research with community involvement and life experience. Case studies include: Northern Ireland; El Salvador; Guatemala; South Africa; Zimbabwe; Israel/Palestine; Afghanistan; Rwanda; and Sri Lanka. It equips graduates for work with local and international organisations, and provides transferable skills for a wide variety of careers, including mediation, diplomacy, policy, advocacy, journalism, teaching, and ministry, as well as Ph.D. research.

After registration in Dublin at the start of the course, teaching takes place in Belfast and partner sites over two terms (September to December and January to early April). Many of these modules are taught in short-intensive format. From April-July students may be based in either Belfast or Dublin depending on their research interests. A one term, non-degree programme is available and is ideal for those on sabbatical, or for those who prefer a shorter period of study. There is also the option of attending single modules. Non-EU students require visas for both the Republic of Ireland and the UK to enrol on this course. Please see Conflict Resolution and Reconciliation for further details.

Evening Postgraduate Diploma in Conflict and Dispute Resolution Studies:

The PG Diploma is designed to enable students to understand the nature and causes of conflict in a variety of settings, from the local workplace to the international realm. Building on this understanding, students also explore a variety of alternative dispute resolution mechanisms and through workshops and role play acquire skills in mediation and restorative justice.

The programme has been running for more than a decade and over the years students have come from a variety of backgrounds including, the police and defence forces, the legal profession, community work, trade union and employers' groups and human resource management. We also welcome people with a general interest in the field or who are thinking of developing a career in the area.

This is a one-year course involving 2 evening sessions (6 hour per week) over 24 teaching weeks. There is also one Saturday workshop.
The course is composed of four compulsory modules:

  • Understanding Conflict,
  • Aspects and Dynamics of Conflict,
  • Theories and Processes of Conflict Resolution,
  • Processes and Skills for Moving Beyond Conflict.

The course is assessed by two essays of 4000 words, a filmed mediation exercise and a reflective log. Please see Conflict and Dispute Resolution Studies for further details.

M.Litt. or Ph.D. Degrees:

The Irish School of Ecumenics welcomes applications from students interested in obtaining a degree (M.Litt or Ph.D) by research. Profiles of academic staff indicate the range of areas in which supervision is available. Initial enquiries should be directed to Please see for further information.

ISE collaborates with other departments - most recently with Sociology and with Politics - and is involved in Trinity's interdisciplinary research centres such as the International Institute for Integration Studies (Social Sciences)the Long Room Hub (Arts and Humanities), and

Last updated 8 August 2016 (Email).