Identity

On this page, you will find all the work we are doing that explores how multilevel governance (i.e. different forms of regional and international governance) affects the identity of those living in Northern Ireland. Brexit is an undercurrent in this analysis, but Northern Ireland has grappled with complex identity questions long before Brexit, and therefore makes an excellent case study for analysing how different forms of governance affects identity formation.

Briefing Paper: The ‘New Decade, New Approach’ deal in Northern Ireland – Governance and Identity

In January 2017, the deputy First Minister, Martin McGuinness, tendered his resignation from the Northern Ireland Executive, citing issues around equality, trust and abuse of power on the part of the Democratic Unionist Party.

Following 3 years of institutional hiatus, during which civil servants assuming greater responsibilities ultimately prevented a return to direct rule, talks between the 5 main political parties, with a focus on negotiations between Sinn Féin and the DUP, recommenced following the Westminster General Election in December 2019. With the support of the Irish and UK Governments throughout the process, and a commitment to this being maintained thereafter, the text of an agreed document named ‘New Decade, New Approach’ was released to the general public on 9th January 2020.

This briefing presents an overview of the agreement reached and examines key aspects of its content, focusing on the elements addressing governance and identity.

The full paper is available to download below:

Project Fieldwork Begins

One strand of the ESRC funded research we are undertaking involves interview and focus group research within Northern Ireland. The research is designed to be participatory and allow participants a central role in the design of the questions, the way they are answered, and the outcomes of the project.

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Performing Identities: Post-Brexit Northern Ireland and the reshaping of 21st-Century Governance.

The Performing Identities project is being funded by the ESRC Governance After Brexit grant scheme. The project team will spend at least 16 months working on the a set of questions about the effects of Brexit on identity in Northern Ireland, along a new research assistant (Megan Armstrong) and in collaboration with Roots and Wings and the Human Rights Consortium.

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