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24 Sept 2022

Taoiseach to address Cross Border Conference in Dundalk

Centre for Cross Border Studies set to host 23rd Annual Conference

Taoiseach to address Cross Border Conference in Dundalk

Dr Anthony Soares, Director of the Centre for Cross Border Studies

Taoiseach Micheál Martin is set to address the Centre for Cross Border Studies highly anticipated 23rd Annual Conference on 29 and 30 September at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Dundalk.

The Centre for Cross Border Studies is an independent charitable institution that fosters and promotes cooperation on a North-South and East-West basis as part of the ongoing peace and reconciliation process on the island of Ireland. It was founded in 1999.

The Centre’s first in-person conference since the pandemic will focus on Commitment, Resilience and Perseverance: New challenges and approaches to cross-border cooperation, mobility, and relations, exploring pertinent issues in cross-border cooperation across two days, bringing together government officials, policy experts and leading academics.

The Taoiseach will deliver a keynote speech on 29 September focused on the Government’s commitment to work with all communities on the island to build consensus around a shared future, underpinned by the Good Friday Agreement. The British Ambassador to Ireland, Paul Johnston, and Bernadette McAliskey will also address the conference.

A business breakfast and three panels focused on cooperation, mobility and relations will take place on the 29 September with a dinner later that evening that will have Brian Rowan (author and former BBC correspondent) as a guest speaker. Technical workshops focused on practical issues affecting cross-border and all-island organisations will be held on 30 September.

The conference comes at a time when the Centre published the results of its sixth quarterly survey on the conditions for North-South and East-West Cooperation which found that the political and social context for cooperation has been impacted by the Northern Ireland Protocol Bill.

Other speakers at the CCBS 23rd Annual Conference include:

  • Director of Public Policy at The Wheel, Ivan Cooper
  • Assistant General Secretary of the Irish Congress of Trade Unions, Owen Reidy
  • Director of Trade at Flint Global, Sam Lowe
  • Vice President and Registrar at Dundalk Institute of Technology, Dr Sheila Flanagan
  • Executive Dean at Dublin City University Institute of Education, Professor Anne Looney
  • Research Fellow at Queens University Belfast, Dr Lisa Claire Whitten
  • President of the EU-UK Follow-up Committee of the EESC, Jack O’Connor 

Director of the Centre for Cross Border Studies, Dr Anthony Soares said: “A cornerstone of our political and social engagement is our Annual Conference that brings together influential individuals to discuss the need for cooperation based on mutual understanding. Through these discussions we encourage our stakeholders to use their different outlooks to identify solutions and opportunities for collaboration. 

“Taoiseach Micheál Martin agreeing to address our conference is a clear testament to the high-quality research and discussions that the Centre provides. We look forward to listening to his timely contribution while we work with everyone to rebuild strained relationships. The Centre for Cross Border Studies high-quality research is recognised as an essential resource for policy-makers and decision-makers. Since our foundation we have sought to promote the prosperity of all through our engagement with prominent politicians, policy-makers, and academics. 

“The next few months are a critical time. With relationships strained like never before, and with the 25th Anniversary of the Good Friday Agreement on the horizon it has never been as important to renew relationships with a sense of energy and focus for all of our people. The Centre offers great opportunities to those looking to get involved in a wider conversation about the key issues impacting this region. We encourage anyone interested in taking part in this conversation to attend, or sponsor, our Annual Conference to gain an understanding of how the Centre facilitates these important discussions.”  

The conference will also launch the renowned 2022 ‘Journal of Cross Border Studies in Ireland’ which brings together written contributions from academics and cross-border practitioners. As well as some of speakers at the conference, other contributors to this year’s edition include:

  • Associate Professor at Trinity College Dublin, Etain Tannam
  • Research Assistant at the Constitution Unit, King’s College London, Conor J. Kelly
  • Immigration Project Coordinator at the Committee on the Administration of Justice, Úna Boyd
  • Lecturer at Cardiff University, Giada Lagana
  • Former Head of the Northern Ireland Civil Service, Sir David Sterling 

The Centre for Cross Border Studies is now offering new sponsorship opportunities for its Conference. The sponsorship packages provide a range of benefits and give organisations and individuals the opportunity to work with the Centre to enhance their own research and work.

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