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Professor Conor O’Mahony discusses his role as Special Rapporteur on Child Protection in the latest episode of UCC School of Law’s Impact Series

1 Sep 2021

Professor O’Mahony was interviewed by Joan Cronin of the Dept of Applied Social Studies in UCC - and a graduate of the LLM in Children’s Rights and Family Law – as part of our new podcast series which shines the spotlight on the resounding impact made by School of Law faculty and their work in the public policy sphere.

Professor O’Mahony has held the role of Special Rapporteur on Child Protection since 2019. The Special Rapporteur is appointed by the Minister for Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth to take an independent, objective and expert view of the child protection system in Ireland and related issues, contributing to the development and review and development of child protection policy and legislation.

In this interesting and wide-ranging interview, Professor O’Mahony discusses his role, including the application process in becoming Special Rapporteur, the scope of the role, its interaction with government and civil society and the day-to-day realities of juggling a public service position with academic work. Also considered are some of the current and upcoming issues that Professor O’Mahony is reviewing, including the impacts of Covid-19 on child protection – unsurprisingly an ongoing concern.

Speaking ahead of the launch of the latest Impact Series episode, Professor Conor O’Mahony said:

A huge amount of my time over the past two years has been devoted to my work as Special Rapporteur on Child Protection, but many people would not be familiar with what the role entails, or indeed with the public service work that many of the staff in the School of Law undertake. This podcast was an interesting opportunity to reflect on the challenges and opportunities involved in connecting teaching and research with policy and law reform.

The Impact Series is available to listen as part of the wider UCC School of Law podcast, which is on Spotify, Apple, Google or wherever you get your podcasts.

Listen to episode three now:

Upcoming episodes include a special feature with UCC School of Law PhD students discussing the impact that they hope their research will make for civil society in the future.


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