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Studies in Public Policy Publications

Publication 28 and Publication 29


The Policy Institute is deligted to announce two new publications in the Studies in Public Policy Series. The Lottery as a Democratic Institution by Peter Stone, Department of Political Science, TCD (with Gil Delannoi (Sciences Po) and Oliver Dowlen (Queen Mary, University of London) and Bridging the divide: the Merger of the Irish Equality Authority and Human Rights Commission by Tom Pegram, Department of Political Science, TCD.

Bridging the divide: the Merger of the Irish Equality Authority and Human Rights Commission

Dr Tom Pegram

Background: This policy report was prepared as part of a research project entitled ‘Bridging the Divide: Matters to be taken into account with respect to the integration of functions of national equality bodies and national human rights institutions in the European Union’, generously funded by the UK-based Nuffield Foundation and led Neil Crowther and Colm O’Cinneide. This research offers an indepth contextual account of the merger process and is intended to contribute to public debate on the proposed Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission (IHREC).
The research addresses the central question: how to merge two separate bodies into one agency without putting domestic equality and human rights in jeopardy. It evaluates the conduct of the merger process by Minister Alan Shatter and the viability of the proposed IHREC. Findings are based on extensive investigation and consultation with over 40 merger stakeholders in government, state bodies and civil society.

About the author:
Thomas Pegram is an Assistant Professor in Political Science (International Relations) at Trinity College Dublin. He is also the Director of the Policy Institute at the School of Social Sciences and Philosophy. Pegram has held research fellowships at New York University and Harvard University Law Schools and completed his PhD in Political Science at Nuffield College, University of Oxford. He specialises in the study of National Human Rights Institutions (NHRIs) with a particular interest in their ability to promote and protect human rights as well as enhance political accountability. Pegram will assume a new position as Lecturer in Global Governance at University College London in September 2013.

Full document available here.

The Lottery as a Democratic Institution

Dr Peter Stone

Background: On October 11-12, 2012, “The Lottery as a Democratic Theory” was held at Trinity College Dublin. This workshop brought together an interdisciplinary research team from across Europe to consider the role of lotteries in a vibrant and well-functioning modern democratic polity. In particular, the workshop considered how the careful use of sortition—the random selection of public officials—might contribute to the revitalization of democracy in the 21st century. The event was jointly organised by Gil Delannoi (Science Po), Oliver Dowlen (UCL) and Peter Stone (Trinity College Dublin) in collaboration with The Policy Institute. The workshop asked the following three questions:

1) What can lotteries contribute to politics?
2) How can lotteries best be incorporated into modern democratic institutions?
3) What research questions on lotteries still need to be addressed?

The organizers of the workshop circulated a draft document to the participants which proposed answers to these three questions. This draft document was then revised in light of the discussion at the workshop, as well as subsequent feedback. This report is the result.

Peter Stone is Ussher Assistant Professor of Political Science (Political Theory) at Trinity College Dublin. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Rochester in 2000. Before moving to Trinity, he taught Political Science at Stanford University and held a Faculty Fellowship at Tulane University’s Center for Ethics and Public Affairs. He works in contemporary political theory, with particular interest in theories of justice, democratic theory, rational choice theory, and the philosophy of social science. He is the author of The Luck of the Draw: The Role of Lotteries in Decision Making (Oxford University Press, 2011) and the editor of Lotteries in Public Life: A Reader (Imprint Academic, 2011). He has also published articles in such journals as the Journal of Political Philosophy, the Journal of Theoretical Politics, Political Theory, Rationality and Society, Social Science Information, and Social Theory and Practice. He is an occasional contributor to the blog Equality by Lot (

Full document available here.

Last updated 9 September 2013 .