Skip to main content

Trinity College Dublin, The University of Dublin

Trinity Menu Trinity Search

Ireland's Constitution: Past, Present and Future

About the course

    • Date
      • 17 January 2019
    • Time
      • 1.30 - 5.30 pm
    • Venue
      • Long Room Hub
    • CPD Hours/Numbers
      • 4

    A symposium organised by Trinity Centre for New Irish Studies and supported by the School of Law, Trinity Long Room Hub, and Trinity Research in Social Sciences. The event will take place on Thursday, 17 January next from 1.30 - 5.30 pm.

    The Constitution of 1937 is the cornerstone of political and social life in Ireland. It defines the identity of the Irish people, establishes the Irish political system and protects a charter of fundamental rights and values. Compared to other constitutions, the Irish Constitution ranks highly for longevity, democratic stability and protection of civil and political rights.

    In recent years, constitutional change through referendum has seen the Constitution has become decidedly less nationalistic and less influenced by Roman Catholic social teaching. At the same time, the Government has become more powerful as the courts have limited their interventions into political decisions. As Irish society further diversifies and as the 1998 Northern Ireland settlement is threatened by Brexit, the Constitution faces new challenges.

    In The Constitution of Ireland: A Contextual Analysis (Hart, 2018), Oran Doyle provides a critical analysis of how the Constitution has developed and how it might respond to challenges to its most fundamental assumptions about Irishness.

    In this public symposium, academic experts from different disciplines and with different perspectives will reflect on these trends and challenges, prompted by a reading of the book. The author will then respond to the speakers.


Prof Chris Morash, Vice-Provost, Seamus Heaney Professor of Irish Writing, Trinity College Dublin

Dr Thomas Mohr, Associate Professor in law, University College Dublin

Dr Catherine Conlon, Assistant professor in social studies, Trinity College Dublin

Prof Gail McElroy, Professor in politics, Trinity College Dublin

Prof Linda Hogan, Professor of Ecumenics, Trinity College Dublin

Prof Chris McCrudden, Professor of Human Rights and Equality Law at Queen’s University Belfast and William W Cook Global Law Professor at the University of Michigan Law School

Dr Etain Tannam, Associate Professor in International Peace Studies, Trinity College Dublin

Dr Conor O’Mahony, Senior Lecturer in Constitutional Law and Child Law at University College Cork


This event is free but registration is essential. Please email

[1] Assuming the Bill is passed by then…