Judges, Politics and the Irish Constitution

Inaugural Law and Government Conference School of Law and Government, Dublin City University September 4, 2014

Call for Papers

On September 4th 2014, the School of Law and Government, Dublin City University, hosts its first annual Law and Government conference. The theme for the conference is Judges, Politics and the Irish Constitution. In the context of the recent Constitutional Convention, now is an apt time to reflect on the role of politics and law in Irish constitutionalism. The conference will bring together academics, including postgraduate students; practitioners; judges and politicians. It will combine academic papers with more reflective pieces. We welcome submissions from any discipline on issues relevant to the conference theme. Papers should address aspects of the theme in at least one of the following categories: 

  • Irish constitutional law in socio-legal perspective: law and disadvantage
  • Irish constitutionalism in historical and comparative perspective: constitutional transitions and institutional design
  • Socio-economic rights in Irish constitutional law: practice and reform
  • Irish constitutional law and the impact on politics and the political process
  • Legal theory and adjudication in Irish constitutional law

Abstracts for papers should be submitted to the conference conveners at the following email address: DCUlawgovconf@gmail.com. They should be submitted not later than May 19th 2014. Abstracts should be a maximum of 500 words and should fit within the conference theme. While practice-oriented papers are encouraged, they should engage with more general historical, socio-legal or theoretical dimensions. As well as considering the academic merit of the abstracts, the assessors will also consider whether the proposed paper fits with the general theme and specific categories. We aim to notify applicants of our decisions by May 30th 2014.

Manchester University Press will publish a peer-reviewed edited volume comprising the best papers. This volume will include a minimum of one postgraduate paper. We also intend to produce a dedicated edition of the Socio-Legal Studies Review comprising other relevant papers arising from the conference.

There will also be a prize for the best paper by a postgraduate student.

Those who are interested in having their paper considered for inclusion in the edited volume, the special edition or the best postgraduate paper prize – are asked to send full versions of their papers by 22nd August 2014

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Confirmed speakers

Catherine McGuinness, former justice of the Supreme and High Courts and Senator

Gerard Hogan, Judge of the High Court

Ivana Bacik, Professor of Law, Trinity College Dublin

Mary Hanafin, former minister and former government chief whip

Colm O Cinneide, Reader in Law, University College London

Gerry Whyte, Professor of Law, Trinity College Dublin

Further speakers to be confirmed.



Dr. Laura Cahillane, School of Law and Government, DCU

Dr. Eoin O’Malley, School of Law and Government, DCU

Ms. Claire-Michelle Smyth, School of Law and Government, DCU

Dr. James Gallen, School of Law and Government, DCU

Dr. Tom Hickey, School of Law and Government, DCU


Key dates

May 19th        Submit abstract

May 30th          Notification from assessors

August 22nd   Submit full paper*

September 4th Conference


*mandatory for those wishing to have papers considered for MUP edited volume and/or Socio Legal Studies special edition and for the best postgraduate paper prize.