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Completed Research Projects in Peace Studies

Explore this page to discover past research projects undertaken by scholars in our School's discipline of Peace Studies. From the significance of ecumenism to examining human trafficking, find out how our researchers have contributed to issues in society and academy.

Explore our completed projects by clicking on their name in the drop-down menu.

• Ernst Strüngemann Forum: Formative childhoods, paths to peace? (2012-2015)

Dr Geraldine Smyth was a Member of Programme Advisory Committee (7 international experts) chaired by Profs. James F. Leckman, Catherine Panter-Brick (Yale) and Dr Rima Salah UNICEF at the Ernst Strüngemann Forum. The Ernst Strüngmann Forum facilitates the continual expansion of knowledge by providing a creative environment within which experts scrutinize high priority problems from multiple vantage points.

The goal of this Forum was to assess child development in the context of familial/group relations, and its role in peacebuilding. The thematic of this Forum brought together bio-scientists, physicians, theologians, educators and peace theorists and practitioners to address the challenge of formative childhoods and peacebuilding. This Forum advanced the assessment of the role of early child development and familial relationships and their neurobiological underpinnings in peace-building. A major publication is forthcoming - timely in contributing to the renewal process for at least two global Declarations (2015) which will guide future programs and policies for children and families throughout the world: 1. United Nations Millennium Declaration (MDG, 2000), signed in 2000 by the representatives of 191 countries, which calls for an investment in social and economic development and 2. Education for All (UNESCO, EFA, 1990) declaration, signed by leaders of over 160 countries, which aims to enhance the quality of life and to reduce poverty through education.

• Social Exclusion and Sport in Northern Ireland (2012-2014)

Dr David Mitchell worked as Research Associate on the research project, ‘Social Exclusion and Sport in Northern Ireland’, based at Ulster University. This major qualitative and quantitative project led by Prof. Owen Hargie and Ian Somerville and funded by the Northern Ireland government, investigated public attitudes regarding the exclusivity and inclusivity of sports organisations and activities.

Project outputs included a 400 page report launched in December 2015 by Executive Minister Jennifer McCann and former Irish rugby player, Trevor Ringland MBE. Dissemination has included articles in the British Journal of Politics and International Relations, International Review for the Sociology of Sport, a comment article in the Irish Times, several international conference presentations, engagement with sports and community groups, and other media coverage.

• Ex-combatants, Religion and Peace in Northern Ireland (2010-2011)

Dr David Mitchell worked as Research Assistant on the project, ‘Ex-combatants, Religion and Peace in Northern Ireland’, led by Professor Gerard Leavey and Professor John Brewer. Funded by the Journey Towards Healing programme of the Northern Ireland Association for Mental Health, the research examined the roles of religion in the lives of thirty loyalist and republican ex-combatants. The research findings were published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2013 as the book, Ex-combatants Religion and Peace in Northern Ireland: The Role of Religion in Transitional Justice.

• Visioning Ecumenism for the 21st Century: Diversity, Dialogue and Reconciliation (2008-2011)

Professor Linda Hogan was a Principal Investigator on 'Visioning Ecumenism for the 21st Century: Diversity, Dialogue and Reconciliation' project. This three-year project was funded by the Irish Research Council. The project evaluated the contributions of ecumenism in Ireland and globally, and identified key areas in which ecumenics contributes to conversations about theological and cultural diversity, immigration, inter-faith dialogue and reconciliation.

The project has resulted in numerous publications and online learning resources. It also provided the basis for a major international conference to mark the centenary of the 1910 Edinburgh Missionary Conference. Associate Researchers included: Professor Gladys Ganiel, Professor Andrew Pierce, Professor Geraldine Smyth, Professor David Tombs and Professor John D'Arcy May. More than 40 publications were produced by associated researchers during the project time.

• Modernity and Modernism: Interpreting the Roots of Religious Crisis (2008-2009)

In 1907, Pius X condemned 'modernism,' imposing theological 'integralism' and a restrictive discipline which remained in force until Vatican II (1962-65). After a century, the construction of modernism and anti-modernism merit evaluation. Modernism occurred within a modernity the value of which is debated. Dr Andrew Pierce was principal investigator on this project. The aim of the project was to situate debates from the early twentieth century in the context of current theological contendings with modernity, thus contributing to debate within modernist studies, and to the theological reception of modernity's past. The project was funded by Government of Ireland Senior Research Fellowships in the Humanities and Social Sciences.

• Towards Theological Engagement with Religious Fundamentalism (2007-2008)

Resurgent religiosity has attracted widespread attention from social and political scientists, but not - in any significant way - from those engaged in Christian systematic theology. As a preparation for an in-depth study of fundamentalism's theological significance, this project involved a scoping study of the field, culminating in an international consultation in Dublin to make available the initial results. Dr Andrew Pierce was principal investigator on this project and the project was funded by St Stephen Green Trust and the Irish School of Ecumenics Trust.

• Trafficking for Forced Labour: The Irish Case (2007-2009)

This project was part of a six country study on 'Trafficking in Industries Other than the Sex Industry Across Europe'. It involved empirical research into the extent of labour trafficking in Ireland and analysis of the root causes of migrant worker exploitation and analysis of policy responses. This project was funded by the Irish Research Council for the Humanities and Social Sciences under ESF Eurocores framework.