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Situating Social Rights in a Constitutional Democracy: A Symposium on TD at 21.

Date & Time: Saturday 9 April 2022, 9:30am - 5:00pm.
Location: Trinity Long Room Hub, Trinity College Dublin.

Trinity Centre for Constitutional Governance (TriCON) in association with The EURGOV Jean Monnet Centre for Excellence, Trinity College Dublin and the Trinity Long Room Hub.

Welcome and Introduction - 9:30am

  • Professor Aileen Kavanagh, Director of TriCON, Trinity Centre for Constitutional Governance.

Panel 1: Situating Social Rights - 9.45am - 11:00am.

  • Chair: Professor Gerry Whyte (TCD)
  • Professor Aoife Nolan (University of Nottingham)
  • Professor Colm O'Cinneide (UCL)
  • Professor Conor O’Mahony (UCC)

Coffee - 11:00am - 11.30am

Panel 2: Situating the Separation of Powers - 11:15am - 12:45pm.

  • Chair: Hilary Hogan (EUI)
  • Professor Laura Cahillane (University of Limerick)
  • Professor Eoin Daly (NUI Galway)
  • Professor Eoin Carolan (UCD)
  • Aileen Kavanagh (TCD)

LUNCH - 12.45pm - 2:00pm

Panel 3: Housing and Distributive Justice - 2:00pm - 3:15pm.

  • Chair: Ailbhe O'Neill (TCD)
  • Professor Rachael Walsh (TCD)
  • Professor Padraic Kenna (NUI Galway)
  • Dr Alan Brady (TCD)
  • Dr James Rooney (TCD)

Panel 4: Reflecting on Rights and Institutional Roles - 3:30pm - 4.45pm.

  • Chair: Professor Aileen Kavanagh (TCD)
  • Professor David Kenny (TCD)
  • Professor Shivaun Quinlivan (NUI Galway)
  • Brice Dickson (QUB)

Event Registration:

Registration for the event is free and can be completed through the registration link here.

TriCON is generously supported by the Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence.



  • Conor O'Mahony is a professor at the School of Law at University College Cork, where he teaches and researches in the areas of constitutional law and children’s rights. His constitutional scholarship has particularly focused on Articles 41, 42 and 42A of the Constitution. He is currently the Government-appointed Special Rapporteur on Child Protection.
  • Hilary Hogan is a Ph.D researcher at the European University Institute, Florence.
  • Alan D.P. Brady LLB (Dubl), LLM, PhD (LSE) BL is an adjunct assistant professor at the TCD Law School where he teaches Judicial Review and Human Rights on the LLM and Critical Perspectives on Law on the LLB. His research focuses on constitutional and human rights law. He is a practicing barrister specialising in child protection, judicial review and social housing law.
  • Colm O’Cinneide is Professor of Constitutional and Human Rights Law at University College London (UCL). A graduate of University College Cork, he has published extensively in the field of comparative constitutional, human rights and anti-discrimination law. He has also acted as specialist legal adviser to the Joint Committee on Human Rights and the Women & Equalities Committee of the UK Parliament, and was from 2010-14 Vice-President of the European Committee on Social Rights of the Council of Europe.
  • Laura Cahillane is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Law, University of Limerick.Her research interests lie in the areas of Constitutional Law, Legal History and Judicial Politics. She has authored a number of books, including Drafting the Irish Free State Constitution (MUP 2016) and Constitutional Law in Ireland (Kluwer 2020) and she has published her research in high-ranking national and international journals. She is a frequent contributor to the media on legal and constitutional issues and has advised the Oireachtas on law reform on a number of occasions. Her work has been cited several times in the Dáil and the Seanad, by the Irish superior Courts and the UK parliamentary library, among others. She is editor-in-chief of the Irish Judicial Studies Journal.
  • Aoife Nolan is Professor of International Human Rights Law and Co-Director of the Human Rights Law Centre, University of Nottingham. She has published extensively on international and constitutional human rights law, with a particular focus on economic and social rights and child rights. Aoife is Vice-President of the Council of Europe's European Committee of Social Rights, the leading European monitoring mechanism on economic and social rights, having joined the Committee in 2017. She is an Academic Expert at Doughty Street Chambers, where she is co-lead of the Children's Rights Group. She currently leads three-year research collaboration focused on the theory and practice of child rights strategic litigation, Advancing Child Rights Strategic Litigation (ACRiSL), involving academic and advocacy partners based in Europe, Africa and Asia.
  • Dr Rachael Walsh is Assistant Professor at the School of Law, Trinity College Dublin, researching and teaching on the interface between public and private law in the context of property. She is the author of Property Rights and Social Justice: Progressive Property in Action (Cambridge University Press, 2021) and co-author of Kelly: The Irish Constitution (Bloomsbury, 2018).
  • Dr David Kenny is Associate Professor of Law and Fellow at Trinity College Dublin working in Irish and Comparative Constitutional Law. He is the Co-author of the 5th edition of Kelly: The Irish Constitution, the leading text on Irish constitutional law. He has written widely on rights and the separation of powers, and constitutional culture. Since 2020, he has been working with the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission on a project about protection of Economic, Social and Cultural Rights in the Irish legal order.
  • Dr James Rooney is a Teaching Fellow at Trinity College Dublin School of Law, a Barrister-at-Law, and Catherine McGuinness Fellow at the Children's Rights Alliance. James' doctoral research, completed at Trinity College Dublin, examined the conditions under which judicial protection of social rights develops within common law jurisdictions.
  • Dr Shivaun Quinlivan (She/Her) is the Vice-Dean for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion in the College of Business, Public Policy and Law at NUI Galway, and a Senior Lecturer in Law. Her research focuses primarily on the right to equality with a particular focus on the right to education for people with disabilities: see De Beco, G., Quinlivan, S., & Lord, J. (Eds.) (2019) The Right to Inclusive Education in International Human Rights Law: Cambridge University Press. She is a member of the Berkeley Center on Comparative Equality and Anti-Discrimination Law and the Irish Women’s Lawyers Association. Dr Quinlivan acted as an expert advisor to the States of Guernsey in relation to the development of new multi-ground equality legislation from 2018-2020. In 2016-17 she was an O’Brien Residential fellow in the Centre for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism in McGill University in Canada. With Dr Lucy-Ann Buckley she co-leads two inclusive learning projects at NUI Galway. She is a graduate of NUI Galway, King’s College London and the Honourable Society of King’s Inns, and Trinity College Dublin. Her doctoral research addressed the efficacy of public interest litigation in the context of the right to education for children with disabilities.