Lecturer in Political Science and Sociology at the National University of Ireland, Galway.
I started out as a historian, spending a year in Derry in 1987 doing research for an MA in history on Derry ‘before the Troubles’ under the supervision of Gearóid Ó Tuathaigh in Galway. The thesis looked at the origins of the civil rights movement and the conflict in the 1950s and 60s.
After spending a year in Berlin I started a PhD in politics at Queen’s University Belfast with Paul Bew in 1990, looking at the escalation of conflict in the early 1970s. The thesis was published as the book ‘From Civil rights to Armalites’. After a number of years when I was concerned primarily with the online world (establishing the University of Ulster’s ‘Conflict Data Service’ and writing two textbooks on Internet research) I have returned in the past few years to research on conflict. My principal current interests are in conflict and territoriality, conflict and new technologies and attempts to moderate or resolve conflict. I am currently working on conflict resolution in Northern Ireland, carrying out interviews, doing archival research and working on the papers of Brendan Duddy who acted as intermediary between the IRA and the British government over a period of twenty years. I am convener of the Political Studies Association of Ireland Specialist Group on Peace and Conflict and I organised conferences around the theme of peace and conflict in Galway in 2008 and in Dublin in 2009. Along with Katy Hayward at QUB I’m organising a conference in September 2010 on ‘Nationalism and Organised Violence’ in Galway.
- Ethnic Conflict and Territory
- The Politics of Peace and Conflict
- Politics and the Internet
- Internet Research Skills
- Politics of Northern Ireland (in the Irish-medium course, Tuaisceart Eireann: Polaitíocht na Coinbhleachta)