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Winning Researchers

10 Oct 2019
Dr Cliona O'Carroll and Tomás Mac Conmara receiving their awards, with Prof. Anita Maguire and UCC President, Prof. Patrick O'Shea

Two researchers from the School of Irish Learning won awards in 2019.

Open Researcher of the Year

Dr Clíona O’Carroll – Béaloideas/Folklore and Cork Folklore Project, College of Arts, Celtic Studies and Social Sciences

Research Support Person of the Year

Tomás Mac Conmara – Cork Folklore Project, College of Arts, Celtic Studies and Social Sciences


Double UCC Research Award Success For Cork Folklore Project

In October 2019, the Cork Folklore Project was recognised for its outstanding work in the area of research with staff from the School of Irish Learning — based in the Department of Folklore and Ethnology — winning awards in two of the ten categories in the UCC Research Awards.

Dr Clíona O’Carroll, Research Director of the CFP, was designated UCC Open Researcher of the Year, ‘recognising that researcher who has embraced the principles of open science in their research process and in the dissemination of their research outputs’. Since 2010, Clíona has been working with the Cork Folklore Project team to consolidate its archival holdings and develop its online catalogue, and to ensure that the content will be discoverable in an open and meaningful way. The digital shift challenges archives of tradition, which are faced with the task of developing best practice for providing access to multi-format, qualitative, vernacular, often intimate or sensitive, non-standard research data and their metadata. This award recognized how the work of the CFP, and Clíona’s work within the international community of tradition archive practitioners, informs the development of a mature response to challenges and opportunities in this context.

The Cork Folklore Project Manager, Dr. Tomás Mac Conmara, received the UCC Research Support Person of the Year award, and was acknowledged for the way he has ‘transformed and energized the work of the project since joining the team in January 2016’. Tomás has supported and initiated an ever-widening range of collection, archiving, dissemination and mentoring activities, enabling the Cork Folklore Project to build on its 23 years of community engagement and ethnographic research.

The Cork Folklore Project has been recording the memories, folklore and oral history of Cork City and County since the initiative was established under the Department of Folklore and Ethnology in UCC in 1996.  Almost 750 interviews have been conducted in that time, amounting to almost 1,000 hours of recorded testimony and tradition.  The CFP can be visited at their Outreach Hub, based at the North Cathedral Visitor Centre or through their website at The online catalogue can be accessed at

The CACSSS Impact Narrative, a document that sums up the Project’s approach and achievements in two pages, is accessible at:

School of Irish Learning

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