Research for Civil Society and Social Action (REACT)
The REACT research cluster brings together researchers with interests in civil society, from disciplines such as Applied Social Studies, Cooperative Studies, Geography and Law. Cluster researchers are members of the Irish Civil Society Research Network.
Cluster Aims and Objectives:
- To bring together researchers from different disciplines with an interest in civil society research
- To undertake interdisciplinary research and activity in the broad area of civil society
- To encourage engagement and dissemination of knowledge between researchers and civil society and
- To facilitate and enable civil society engagement with research and with the University.
The REACT cluster hosts seminars and other events at which ISS21 members and invited speakers can share their research. Highlights from recent years include:
REACT Cluster Research Slam, April 2019
On 18 April 2019, the REACT cluster organised a research slam, at which six cluster members gave short presentations on their current, completed or new research, followed by a lively Q&A session. Further details are available at the following link: research slam
Spaces for Change? The Practice and Policy of Community Participation in Local Governance in Ireland, November 2018
In November 2018 the Civil Society Cluster hosted a half-day seminar on the practice and policy of community participation in local governance in Ireland. Speakers at the event included: Dr Mary Murphy, Department of Sociology, National University of Ireland, Maynooth; Dr Aodh Quinlivan, Department of Government, University College Cork; Aiden Lloyd, Chair of the Rights Platform and member of South Dublin PPN Secretariat and LCDC; and Dr Catherine Forde, School of Applied Social Studies, University College Cork. The initial findings of an IRC-funded project on Irish local participatory governance was presented as part of the seminar. Details available at the following link: spaces for change
New Perspectives on Youth Political Participation, February 2018
At this half-day seminary in February 2018 Dr Nathan Manning (University of York), Dr Emily Rainsford (Newcastle University) and Rebecca Jeffers (UCC) presented papers based on their research on different aspects of youth participation. Following the presentations, Dr. Theresa Reidy chaired a roundtable discussion with James Doorley (National Youth Council of Ireland), Donnchadh O’Laoghaire TD (Sinn Féin), Laura Harmon (National Women’s Council of Ireland) and Thomas Atcha (UCC). For further details are available at the following link: youth participation
Transformation of the Community, Voluntary and Co-operative Sectors? March 2017
This seminar explored the changing character of the Voluntary and Community Sector (VCS) and community co-operatives in England, and what we in Ireland can learn from recent developments. Speakers included Dr Mike Aiken, Visiting Research Fellow, Open University, UK, Deirdre O’Byrne, Centre for Adult Continuing Education, UCC and Noreen Byrne, Centre for Co-operative Studies, UCC. Further details available here
The Changing Landscape of Local and Community Development in Ireland: Policy and Practice, October 2015
On the 21 October 2015 the Civil Society Cluster hosted a conference which explored the changing nature of local and community development, with contributors from the university and the community sector. Further details available here
Changing Landscape of Local and Community Development
In 2014-15, members of the cluster – the Local and Community Development Working Group – developed a research initiative focused on the Changing Landscape of Local and Community Development in Ireland, funded by the UCC Strategic Research Fund. It set out to investigate the impact of two main strands of policy development affecting the community and voluntary sector: firstly, the range of austerity measures introduced by Government since the economic crisis of 2008, which led to severe cuts in funding to the sector; and secondly, an on-going process of policy change since the late 1990s, linked to Government attempts to align the sector with central and local government priorities and agenda. The latter culminated in the passing of the Local Government Reform Act 2014, which attempted to bring the community and voluntary sector under greater local and central government control, and the introduction of competitive tendering for service contracts established by the State, in place of grants for community sector organisations.
Arising from that project, a conference was held in UCC in October 2015. The conference proceedings can be downloaded here:
For a list of cluster members, please click here Cluster Members