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Launch of the Interim Report of the Working Group on Unification Referendums on the Island of Ireland.

Dublin Webinar

Tuesday 1 December at 1:00pm IST.

The Interim Report of the Working Group on Unification Referendums on the Island of Ireland is published on 26 November. This event is an opportunity for public discussion of the report’s purposes, analysis, and conclusions. It is primarily aimed at interested individuals and organisations in the Republic of Ireland. Similar events are being held in Belfast and London, designed for audiences in Northern Ireland and Great Britain. The webinar is co-hosted by the Trinity Centre for Constitutional Law and Governance Trinity College Dublin, The Institute for British-Irish Studies University College Dublin, and The Constitution Unit, University College London.

The substantial and detailed report explores how any potential future referendum or referendums on the constitutional status of Northern Ireland would best be designed and conducted.

The Group is independent of all political parties and governments and is funded by the British Academy and Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust. The Group takes no view on whether such referendums should take place or what the outcome should be. You can read more about the Working Group, its members, and the areas our project is examining here.

The report concludes that referendums should not be called without a clear plan for the referendum processes that would follow, and it identifies difficult issues that need discussion and analysis. For example, what evidence would inform the decision to call a referendum on Northern Ireland’s constitutional status? Would referendums take place before or after proposals for the shape of a united Ireland had been developed? How would the referendum campaigns be regulated? These are just a few of the questions explored by the Group.

The following speakers will examine the possible answers to these questions in the Irish political and legal context:

Dr Alan Renwick
Coordinator of the project and Deputy Director of the Constitution Unit, University College London
Professor Jennifer Todd
Professor of Politics and International Relations at University College Dublin
Professor Oran Doyle
Working Group member and Professor in Law at Trinity College Dublin.
Professor Aileen Kavanagh - Chair
Director of the Trinity Centre for Constitutional Law and Governance Trinity College Dublin.

The event will be chaired by Professor Aileen Kavanagh of the School of Law, Trinity College Dublin. Part of the event will be a Q&A session in which the audience has the opportunity to dig deeper into the findings of the report.

The event kicks off a consultation period in which the Group welcomes feedback and views on the content of the interim report which will then inform the Group’s final report in spring 2021. This event will be of interest to academics, policy professionals, political officials, journalists and civil society organisations, as well as students and interested members of the public.

Webinar Recording A recording of the webinar can be viewed here.

The Interim Report is available here