Conferences & Visiting Speakers

Polish Ambassador addresses Politics Students

The Polish Ambassador, H.E. Mr Marcin Nawrott , spoke to Politics students on 13th March in UCC.

On March 13, Polish Ambassador H.E. Marcin Nawrot gave a guest lecture on Polish climate and energy policies as part of the first year politics programme. He was welcomed by Dr. Jonathan Murphy, School of History and received a copy of Emeritus Professor John A. Murphy's definitive history of University College Cork from Professor Paul Giller, Registrar and Vice President for Academic Affairs. After signing the UCC Guest Book H.E. was hosted by the School of History, Department of Government and Department of Philosophy at Hayfield Manor for lunch.



European Commission Seminar, UCC, 2 October

The EC Representation in Ireland invites you to an evening seminar on ‘European Economic Policy –

What’s in it for Ireland?


2012 Events and Visiting Speakers Series




Symposium on US Foreign Policy and Public Diplomacy

'New World, New Media: The De-centring of “America”’: Professor Scott Lucas, University of Birmingham

'Public Diplomacy and the Construction of the Third World: Professor Jason Parker, Texas A&M University

On 15th March, 2012 the MA in Politics visiting speakers series hosted a symposium on public diplomacy and US foreign policy.  Professor Jason Parker of Texas A&M university provided a fascinating account of how 1950s US public diplomacy helped create the concept of a ‘Third World’ and how American public diplomacy efforts were complicated by push-back from the recipients.  Professor Parker took the audience on a tour of seminal Cold War events such as the Bandung Conference and the Suez Crisis before handing the stage to Professor Scott Lucas of Birmingham University, who added to this idea of multiple voices when he discussed public diplomacy in the new media environment.  Professor Lucas argued that innovations like blogs; Twitter and Facebook – as well as non-American news sources such as Al-Jazeera –meant that the US was no longer at the centre of the global conversation.  A lively discussion ensued.

See video for Scott here and for Jason here


Radicalisation and Improvised Explosive Devices: Professor Caroline Kennedy-Pipe, University of Hull

Professor Caroline Kenned-Pipe of Hull University visited UCC on 7th March and presented an update of her research on radicalisation, improvised explosive devices (IEDs) and the new phenomenon on drone strikes.  As lead researcher on a large grant project focused on IEDs, Professor Kennedy-Pipe was able to give the audience some very fresh insights into the relationship between Western drone warfare and insurgent IEDs.  A central focus of the talk was the issue of morality and ethics in combat, with Professor Kennedy-Pipe expressing concern that the growing popularity of drone warfare would lead to an era of ‘post-heroic’ warfare where human control is increasingly removed from combat.

 See video here

The British Army and the Battle for Derry: Dr. Andrew Sanders, Clinton Institute for American Studies, UCD

On 23rd February, the MA in Politics Visiting Speakers series hosted its first event of 2012.  Dr. Andrew Sanders of the Clinton Institute for American Studies, UCD, spoke on the British Army and the Battle for Derry.  Drawing on research conducted for his new book, Times of Troubles: The British Army in Northern Ireland, Dr. Sanders gave a detailed account of the battle for the Bogside, Bloody Sunday, and other key moments.  The talk drew on a vast array of sources, from interviews with British Army veterans to official records and provoked a wide-ranging and fascinating discussion afterwards.


Professor Campbell Craig speaks at UCC, February 2011


Professor Campbell Craig has established himself as a key international figure in reinterpreting the role of nuclear weapons in world politics. He has authored/co-authored four critically acclaimed books. In much of his work, he has sought to describe how the fear of nuclear war has shaped both foreign-policy making and discourse about politics, particularly in America, and how this fear has transformed international politics at the systemic level.


Professor Craig’s stimulating talk at UCC blended deduction, counterfactuality and circumstance with documentary research to unveil surprising insights into President Truman’s dual decision to deploy the atomic bomb against Hiroshima and Nagasaki. It attracted a large audience of students and staff who engaged in a lively discussion afterwards.


He is currently professor of international politics at the University of Aberystwyth and was previously professor of international relations at the University of Southampton (2005-09), international security studies fellow and visiting associate professor in international affairs at Yale University (2004-05). He was also a senior research fellow at the Norwegian Nobel Institute in Oslo.  He has given invited lectures at Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Dartmouth, Chicago, Columbia, Cambridge, Sciences-Po, the Free University of Berlin, the London School of Economics, and many other universities


His books include: Destroying the Village: Eisenhower and Thermonuclear War (1998), Glimmer of a New Leviathan: Total War in the thought of Niebuhr, Morgenthau and Waltz (2003), The Atomic Bomb and the Origins of the Cold War (2008, co-authored with Sergey Radchenko), America’s Cold War: the Politics of Insecurity (2009, co-authored with Fredrik Logevall).


Picture L-R:  Professor Campbell Craig; Dr Mervyn O’Driscoll (MA Politics Co-ordinator)

Professor Ian Clark spoke in UCC

   "Living with the Sole Superpower:

           Hegemony not Primacy".

Professor Clark is a Fellow of the British Academy and is one of the foremost figures in the areas of International History and International Relations Theory. He is the    author of thirteen books on subjects that range from globalisation and nuclear strategy to the philosophy of war. He has been recipient of a Leverhulme Major Research Fellowship (2002-4), is Chair of Political Studies at the British Academy, and currently holds an ESRC Professorial Fellowship 2007-10 for his project on 'Legitimacy and Hegemony'.

His most recent books are:
The Post-Cold War Order: The Spoils of Peace
Globalization and International Relations Theory

Professor Tony Carty

Professor Tony Carty spoke in UCC on  “Do Legal Advisers matter? - Lessons from the Iraq War.”

Tony Carty, Professor of Public Law in the University of Aberdeen and the author of Philosophy of International Law will give a talk on the Iraq War and the role of legal advisors in the rush to war. He will talk about the continuing place of international law advice in the contemporary crisis of British Government and foreign policy.

Tony Carty has written The Decay of International Law (1986) and has edited Post-Modern Law, Enlightenment, Revolution and the Death of Man (1990). In 1996 he published Was Ireland Conquered (Pluto Press), a work applying Stephen Greenblatt’s theories of literature and history to the history of Irish, Norman, Scottish and English relations in a colonial and imperial context. He is a graduate from Queen’s University Belfast, University College London and Jesus College Cambridge, where he completed a doctorate on historiography of 19th century textbooks on international law.

Tony Carty has also written on the role of lawyers in the latter stages of the foreign affairs of the British Empire, concentrating on the Second World War, the Cold War and the End of Empire. This led to the volume Sir Gerald Fitzmaurice and the World Crisis, A Legal Adviser in the Foreign Office, 1932-1945.

Dr Maurice Manning spoke in UCC

Dr Maurice Manning is President of the Irish Human Rights Commission. He has been an active politician as well as a highly regarded academic. He has served in both the Dáil and the Seanad. He was both the leader of the Seanad as well as serving as leader of the opposition in that chamber.

He taught in the politics department in UCD for many years and is the author of many well-known studies of Irish history and politics. He is probably best known for his classic work on The Blueshirts, which has been reprinted several times and has recently been re-issued by Gill and MacMillan.

Dr Manning will speak about changes to the Irish political system as well outlining the work of the Irish Human Rights Commission.

Report on Professor John Gray's inaugral lecture at UCC

John Gray, “one of the world's most prominent political thinkers” (American Political Science Assoc), gave the inaugural lecture at the MA in Politics Visiting Speaker Series on December 5th 2007. Professor spoke on “The Myths of secularism” to a packed Boole 2 audience.

His most recent book is Black Mass in which he makes the argument that “Of all modern delusions, the idea that we live in a secular age is the furthest from reality ... liberal humanism itself is very obviously a religion - a shoddy replica of Christian faith markedly more irrational than the original article, and in recent times more harmful."

“Over the past 200 years, philosophy has shaken off Christian faith. It has not given up Christianity's cardinal error – the belief that humans are radically different from all other animals.”

“Most people today think that they belong to a species that can be master of its destiny. This is faith, not science. We do not speak of a time when whales or gorillas will be masters of their destinies. Why then humans?”

Gray’s argument provoked a lively and entertaining discussion and it was an excellent start to our Visiting Speaker Series.

Department of Government & Politics Office

Room 2.48, 2nd floor, T12 YN60