It is just over six months since the January 2021 launch of the multi-year project Analysing and Researching Ireland North and South (ARINS).
ARINS is a joint endeavor of the Royal Irish Academy and the Keough-Naughton Institute for Irish Studies at Notre Dame’s Keough School of Global Affairs. Its goal is to provide non-partisan analysis and research on the challenges and opportunities presented to the island of Ireland in the wake of Brexit—all with the intention of contributing to an informed public discourse. ARINS involves recognized experts across a spectrum of disciplines and perspectives—inviting contributions in the form of academic papers, blog posts, and proposals for partnerships.
Research and analysis focus on three broad areas:
- Political, constitutional and legal questions;
- Economic, financial, social, and environmental questions; and
- Cultural and educational questions.
As ARINS contributes substance to the debate around Ireland’s future, in this first year, organizers have focused on both publications and partnerships for projects and symposia.
Fifteen articles have been published to date, with several more in queue for the year. In the interest of encouraging debate, each article is published with at least one response by a recognized expert in the relevant field.
Articles cover a range of topics—with five examples as:
- "Obstacles to Public Health that even Pandemics cannot Overcome: The Politics of Covid-19 on the Island of Ireland" by Ann Nolan et al.
- “Why the ‘Subvention’ does not Matter: Northern Ireland and the All-Ireland Economy” by John Doyle
- “One Island, Two Peoples: Ethical Perspectives on Ireland's Constitutional Future” by Liam Kennedy
- “Unionism, Identity and Irish Unity: Paradigms, Problems and Paradoxes” by Jennifer Todd
- “Let ‘the People’ Decide: Reflections on Constitutional Change and ‘Concurrent Consent’” by Colin Harvey.
The most downloaded article (over 4000 downloads) has been “Who’s Better Off? Measuring Cross-border Differences in Living Standards, Opportunities and Quality of Life on the Island of Ireland” by Adele Bergin and Seamus McGuinness.
The other 14 articles average 1000 downloads per article. Five of these articles have also been featured as op-eds in the Irish Times, where they gained a considerable amount of attention. Op-eds by ARINS members have also been published in the Belfast Telegraph.
In addition to publishing research, ARINS has launched a podcast series in which authors join former Irish diplomat Rory Montgomery to discuss their papers in greater detail.
A new podcast is released on the first Thursday of every month.
ARINS also supports partner projects, including:|
- A project aimed at mapping cross-border cooperation in the arts sector funded by the Department of Foreign Affairs Reconciliation Fund. This report will be published in January 2022.
- A seminar series comparing German reunification with possible Irish unification, with the first seminar planned for spring/ summer of 2022 at Notre Dame’s Kylemore Abbey Global Centre;
- “Giving Voice to Diversity” research project, which has conducted numerous interviews and focus groups to support future papers on the state of the constitutional debate in the north and south.
- Two projects centered on gendering debates on Irish unification.
By the end of this year, over thirty research papers will be published by ARINS and plans for in-person events in 2022 will be underway. In the meantime, the ARINS committee welcomes submissions (research papers or project partnerships) on topics relating to the future of Ireland, north and south, post Brexit. In particular, the committee is keen to engage with questions on climate change, arts and culture, and social policy.
Inquiries can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Liam Galligan is the ARINS Project Executive Committee Intern for Summer 2021. Liam is a rising senior political science major in the Glynn Family Honors Program at Notre Dame, with minors in both Irish Language and Literature and the program in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics.