John G O'Reilly


Profile Photo
Gerry O'Reilly is Associate Professor in Geography, and International Coordinator for the School of History and Geography, with research and teaching interests in geopolitics, political, economic and cultural geography, sustainable development and education. Modules include: Geopolitics and Humanitarian Action; Middle East and North Africa (MENA), Europe and Spaces of Memory. He obtained his PhD from Durham University, MA from the National University of Ireland (University College Cork), HDipEd and BA, Maynooth University. Post-doctoral research was undertaken in political geography and sustainable development at University College Dublin. Before joining SPC - DCU in 1997, Gerry held lectureship and research posts at UCD, and Universities of Durham, Tunis, and Algeria-Annaba, and Visiting Professorship at the Ohio State University, Columbus. Regarding Humanitarian Action and Geopolitics and as Faculty member of ECHO (EU Humanitarian Office) -  sponsored NOHA (Network on Humanitarian Action), he was Erasmus Mundus Visiting Fellow at the Western Cape University (2009), Toronto York University (2008) and Columbia University NY (2007).

Gerry is Vice President of EUROGEO - EAG (European Association of Geographers); and International Geographical Union, National Representative for the Commission on Population and Vulnerability. Representative for L'Association Comenius and NETT that operate within the EU LLP/ERASMUS framework. Representative on the National Steering Committee of the CGDE: Centre for Global Development through Education (MI-UL); and CHRCE - Centre for Human Rights and Citizenship Education.


Year Publication
2019 Gerry O'Reilly (2019) Aligning Geopolitics, Humanitarian Action and Geography in Times of Conflict. Switzerland: Springer International Publishing. [Link]

Book Chapter

Year Publication
2017 Gerry O'Reilly (2017) 'Preparing Critically & Globally Conscious Teachers' In: Linking Research & Training in Internationalization of Teacher Education. Bern : Peter Lang.
2016 Gerry O'Reilly & Ruth McManus (2016) 'Heritage Tourism and the Commodification of Contested Spaces: Ireland and the Battle of the Boyne Site' In: Heritage and Tourism in Britain and Ireland: Conservation, Nation, Identity. London : Palgrave Macmillan Press.
2014 Gerry O'Reilly (2014) 'The EU & Humanitarian Action: Breaking Down Borders' In: European Borders: Geographical Perspectives of Territorial Cooperation. Berlin : mbv-berlin.
2009 Gerry O'Reilly with M. Villanueva, T. Barata-Salgueiro, M. Baylina, H. Cachinho, C. Matzka, D. Pirog and S. Sahin (2009) 'Understanding Europe' In: Thinking Europeans: New Geographies of Place, Culture and Identity. Cambridge : Cambridge: CSP.
2009 Gerry O'Reilly & Christian Matzka (2009) 'Contested Spaces of Memory and Identity: Lingering Impacts' In: Thinking Europeans: New Geographies of Place, Culture and Identity. Cambridge : Cambridge: CSP. [Link]
2004 Gerry O'Reilly (2004) 'Rhythms and Identity in Boyne Valley Landscapes' In: Reanimating Places: Geography of Rhythms. London : Ashgate / Routledge.
2001 Gerry O'Reilly (2001) 'Scaling Democracy and Sustainable Development in the Irish Context' In: Sustainable Landscapes and Lifestyles. Cork : Cork University Press.
1987 Gerry O'Reilly (1987) 'Strait of Gibraltar' In: The Cambridge Atlas of the Middle East and North Africa. Cambridge : Cambridge University Press.

Edited Book

Year Publication
2023 Gerry O'Reilly (Ed.). (2023) Place Naming, Identities and Geography: Critical Perspectives in a Globalizing and Standardizing World. Switzerland: Springer Chamb, [Link]
2020 O'Reilly, Gerry (Ed.). (2020) Places of Memory and Legacies in an Age of Insecurities and Globalization. Europe: Springer International Publishing, [Link] [DOI]

Peer Reviewed Journal

Year Publication
2022 Yaar-Waisel, Tal, and Gerry O’Reilly (2022) 'Small But Smart: International Shared Virtual Class Link-up During the Pandemic 2020-2021 - Third-Level Students in Ireland and Israel'. European Journal of Geography, .
2020 Joos Droogleever Fortuijn, Zoltán Kovács, Antoine Le Blanc, Gerry O’Reilly, Leo Paul, Ana Pejdo. (2020) 'THE CHALLENGES FOR GEOGRAPHY IN HIGHER EDUCATION IN EUROPEAN UNIVERSITIES'. J-Reading - Journal of Research and Didactics in Geography, 1 (9):49-60. [Link] [DOI]
2016 Gerry O'Reilly (2016) 'Gibraltar: Evolving Geopolitics and Self-Determination Issues'. 42 (42).
2015 Gerry O'Reilly & Ruth McManus (2015) 'Practice and Theory in Geography: Experiences from international collaboration for teacher education'. 1 (4):7-18. [Link] [DOI]
2013 Ruth McManus with Gerry O’Reilly (2013) 'International Student Collaboration in Geography: Learning by Doing Together'. 22 :23-27.
2013 Gerry O'Reilly (2013) 'What is Ireland’s role in relation to international humanitarian crises and disasters?'. Geographical Viewpoint, 41 (41):3-17.
2013 Gerry O'Reilly (2013) 'The EU and Humanitarian Action: Breaking Down Boundaries'. Journal of Geography, 4 (4):88-97. [Link]!.pdf
2007 Gerry O'Reilly (2007) 'Can the EU Afford Not To Integrate Turkey?'. :29-41.
2005 Gerry O'Reilly (2005) 'Ireland and Economic Globalisation: a Two-Way Process'. :17-28.
2004 Gerry O'Reilly (2004) 'Economic Globalisations: Ireland in the EU – 1973-2003'. Acta Geographica Slovenica-Geografski Zbornik, :47-88.
2003 Gerry O'Reilly (2003) 'The State, Islam and Conflict: Algeria'. :26-35.
2000 Gerry O'Reilly (2000) 'Gibraltar: Sovereignty Disputes and Territorial Waters'. :11-19.
1995 Gerry O'Reilly (1995) 'The Peace Process and Israel / Palestine'. Geographical Journal, 23 (23):66-75.
1991 Gerry O'Reilly (1991) 'Kuwait: Boundaries, Oil and Shadow Empires'. Geographical Viewpoint, 19 (19):18-30.
1990 Gerry O'Reilly (1990) 'Gibraltar et le Detroit: Colonie britannique et Passage géostrategique'. HERODOTE: REVUE DE GEOGRAPHIE ET DE GEOPOLITIQUE, 57 (57):59-75.

Other Journal

Year Publication
2011 Gerry O'Reilly & Ruth McManus (2011) 'Internationalization and geography fieldwork: opportunities for skills enhancement' 20 (20) :20-25.
2003 Gerry O'Reilly (2003) 'Disputed Territories in the Gibraltar Region: The Crown Colony of Gibraltar and the Spanish Sovereign Territories in North Africa' 1 (2) :7-18.
1999 Gerry O'Reilly (1999) 'Gibraltar: Sovereignty Disputes & Territorial Waters' 7 (1) :67-81.
1989 Gerry O'Reilly (1989) 'Gibraltar: Spain & UK Claims' 4 (4) :1-30.
1988 Gerry O'Reilly (1988) 'The Greater Maghreb Union: Geostrategic and Geopolitical Significance' (16) :8-13.

Conference Publication

Year Publication
2012 Gerry O'Reilly & Ruth McManus (2012) Geography and Global Understanding: Connecting the Sciences Integrating geographies and embedding human diversity: Case study of an undergraduate program in Ireland SPD-DCU, 01/06/2012- 03/06/2012 [Link]
2011 Gerry O'Reilly (2011) EUROGEO - Geography: You’re World – European Perspectives. In conjunction with the National Technical University, in Athens, Greece Exploring Symbolic Places in Geography: Human Rights and Citizenship University of Athens, Greece, 02/06/2011- 04/06/2011
2010 Gerry O'Reilly (2010) EUROGEO: Sustainable Geographies . In: EUROGEO eds. What is the role of symbolic places in furthering a human rights approach to sustainable development? Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic, 07/05/2010- 08/05/2010 [Link]
2009 Gerry O'Reilly (2009) HERODOT/EUROGEO Conference: Geographical Diversity . In: Donert K, Ari Y, Attard M, O'Reilly G and Schmeinck D eds. Reading Landscapes – Identity and Citizenship Issues: discovered by students on a fieldwork visit to Belfast Balikesir University, Ayvalik, Turkey,
2008 Gerry O'Reilly (2008) Packaging the Past: The Commodification of Heritage. University of Cambridge, UK Heritage Tourism and the Commodification of Contested Spaces in Ireland: the Battle of the Boyne Site University of Cambridge, UK,
2007 Gerry O'Reilly (2007) Education, Interdisciplinarity and Geography Geography and Interdisciplinarity: Contrasting Case Studies from Ireland University of Sibiu, Romania,

Conference Contribution

Year Publication
2020 Gerry O'Reilly (2020) The 26th International Seminar on Sea Names. Geographical Naming in the Digital Era. September 17-19, 2020. Gangneung, Korea. The Society for East Sea, and NAHF - the Northeast Asian History Foundatio Geographical Naming in the Digital Era. Digital technology has revolutionized cartography bringing major changes to map creation and usage with innovative accessibility open to people of all socio-economic and educational levels worldwide. Therefore, due to digitalization, map production is no longer the preserve of a limited number of individuals, nor geographers, cartographers or civil servants, nationally or internationally. Any map is only as good as the data available for its creation, and of course the actual data selected to be presented. Hence the accelerated need to (re)appraise endogenous and exogenous geographical names as one of the basic elements in map making and updating. This is nothing new in itself with a myriad of examples worldwide throughout history and especially in colonization and decolonization processes and conflictual cultural territorializations, but also less subtly in propaganda cartography. However, what is different now is the scale and compression of ti Gangneung, Korea, 17/09/2020-19/09/2020.
2019 Gerry O'Reilly (2019) European Association of Geographers - EUROGEO Conference – Paris, 14-15th March 2019 Teaching Geography in challenging times Facing Challenges: Aligning Geography, Geopolitics and Humanitarian Action. Key ideas: geography, development, geopolitics, humanitarism, action. Confronting the defies of sustainability, development and ever-growing socio-political malaise and violence being witnessed in many societies inside and beyond Europe is part of the geographer’s remit. A major responsibility is access to, and reflective responsible use of geographical information regarding conflict. In this paper, concepts and problems assessed were based on frequently asked questions and discussions had with students taking courses in geography, humanitarian action, geopolitics and associated disciplines since 1998, and equally with practitioners in the field. Questions were categorised into thematic groups. Analytical answers were enhanced with digital data, from sources including the UN Development Program, OCHA – UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, ECHO (European Commission Humanitarian Aid) and NGOs Paris, 13/03/2019-16/03/2019.
2019 Gerry O'Reilly. Plenary/Keynote Lecture (2019) Hidden Geographies: University of Ljubljana, Slovenia Hidden Geographies in Times of Change and Conflict: Decoding hidden geographies poses challenges; reading hidden intelligible inter-relationships from a holistic perspective is imperative. Ethical interpretation is vital: to select, model and relate information to existing knowledge bases and ideals e.g. UN SDGs. Research seeks deeper levels of image, not always showing political-economy power brokers. Rising extremism in the USA, UK’s Brexit stress, and populisms across Europe, and from the Philippines to Brazil and fundamentalisms epitomized by Daesh suggest this. Due to globalization, geographers are required to interpret from the smallest scales to world-wide levels. In this, managing and eliminating violence is no longer a choice for humanity, but a responsibility so as to avoid sliding into a dystopian world. Elucidating hidden geographies of power is essential; aligning geography, geopolitics and humanistic perspectives is vital. Resource control, defence, identity and existenti Ljubljana, Slovenia, 29/08/2019-31/10/2019.
2019 Gerry O'Reilly (2019) European Association of Geographers - EUROGEO Conference -Teaching Geography in challenging times Geographical Perspectives: Spaces of Memory - Memorialization and Democratization: Spaces of memory are appraised from geographical perspectives and their place in democratization and citizenship. Interpretations from various standpoints include the geopolitics of memory and emotions. Research in geography and education must respond, empowering citizens to create sustainable futures. Now, memorialization contributes to wider inclusive interpretations of history, heritage, tourism and human rights. “In the past, … there was one national history and … many particular memories. Today, … its unity stems from a divided patrimonial demand that is constantly expanding … in search of coherence” (Pierre Nora, Les Lieux de Mémoire). The European Project embraces this challenge, with its geographies in places of memories that can foster cooperation as witnessed throughout Europe e.g. Ireland’s Decade of Centenaries (2012-22) including ceremonial usage of the symbolic Glasnevin Cemetery Dublin. No Paris, 13/03/2019-16/03/2019.
2019 Gerry O'Reilly. Keynote Lecture (2019) International Korean-European Conference on Geographic Naming and Geographical Education. Northeast Asian History Foundation. Seoul, Korea Naming places - territoriality and sustainable peace-building: challenges for educators in the 21st century This paper appraises physical and human geographical concepts of territorial and maritime space, place and perception. Firstly, it reviews theories regarding typonyms and naming of places; followed by concepts of territorialization and UNCLOS (1982, UN Convention on Law of the Sea), and finally the T&L challenges that this poses for teachers and students alike. Examples and case study material reference Korea and other countries. (i) Humans attribute meanings and directions to place through typonyms, either referring to topological or environmental phenomena such as springs, valleys, islands, rock outcrops in the sea, plant or animal species and so forth. Otherwise, cultural designations are used such as perceived important historical events, significant people, ethnic or national group naming. Linguistic and cultural groups do this for their own lived space, or spaces once lived NAHF. Seoul, Korea, 20/10/2019-23/10/2019.
2019 Gerry O'Reilly. Invited Paper. (2019) Borders and Bordering in the 21st Century. Gibraltar Garrison Library / University of Gibraltar Border Narratives - Geopolitics and Brexit: This paper explores the nexus between concepts of boundaries and territoriality, states and nationalism – economic and romantic-nostalgia constructs, and also international institutions and law in the quest to prevent or attenuate conflict and war, the antithesis of development. In this context, despite its many shortcomings, like the UN, the EU has succeeded in strengthening democracy ideals and institutions, but also in preventing war between EU member states since its inception in the 1950s. This acquis communautaire and long cycle of history cannot be taken for granted, or else run the risk of aggressive nationalism and violent conflict once more. Many geopolitical concepts ranging from territoriality, boundaries and borders to nationalism are mirrored in the UK’s Brexit experiences and the consequences of such on populations not only in the UK but also Ireland and Gibraltar. Keywords: geopolitics, territoriality, boundaries, states Gibraltar, 26/09/2019-29/09/2019.
2018 Gerry O'Reilly (2018) The Earth as Our Home Conference of Irish Geographers. What sort of Home have we made of our Earth? Special Session: Anne Buttimer’s enduring legacy in geography as lived, researched, taught and appreciated by others in the multiple stages of her lifepath University of Maynooth, Ireland, 10/05/2018-12/05/2018.
2017 Gerry O'Reilly (2017) Geography: Disruptions and Transgressions Conference of Irish Geographers. Discourse or rhetoric? Framing the “others” from humanitarian perspectives University College Cork, 04/05/2017-07/05/2017.
2017 Gerry O'Reilly (2017) Geography for Europe! EUGEO: Association of Geographical Societies in Europe EUGEO: Struggling to Define Ireland & Europe: Challenging Geographical, Historical & Geopolitical Orthodoxies & Frameworks Palace of the Academies, Brussels, 04/09/2017-06/09/2017.
2017 Gerry O'Reilly (2017) Geography for Europe! EUGEO: Association of Geographical Societies in Europe EUGEO: Geography, Citizenship, Heritage and Space of Memory in a Volatile Europe Palace of the Academies, Brussels, 04/09/2017-06/09/2017.
2017 Gerry O'Reilly (2017) Geography: Disruptions and Transgressions Conference of Irish Geographers. Geography and the Quest for Paradise University College Cork, 04/05/2017-06/05/2017.
2016 Gerry O'Reilly (2016) CIG: Memory, identity and landscape: Geographical perspectives Deconstructing & Decoding the Geopolitics of the Syrian Conflict & the ‘Situation’ of Children in it St. Patrick's College, Dublin City University, 05/05/2016-07/05/2016.
2016 Gerry O'Reilly (2016) EUROGEO: Geographic Information for a Better World Is it possible to speak of UN sustainable development goal 4 – Education - in the context of the Syrian War? EUROGEO & University of Malaga, 29/09/2016-30/09/2016.
2015 Gerry O'Reilly (2015) Education and Internationalization European Education: Training the Trainers Haute Ecole Pédagogique, University of Lausanne, Switaerland, 03/07/2015-04/06/2016.
2014 Gerry O'Reilly (2014) Geography Education: Roadmaps Roadmap for Geography Education. Invited paper: Presidents of IGU / CGE – International Geographical Union, EUGEO – Association of Geographical Societies, and EUROGEO European Association of Geographers University of Utrecht, Netherlands, 21/02/2014-23/02/2014.
2014 Gerry O'Reilly (2014) EUROGEO Conference: The Power of Geography and the Role of Spatial Information Gibraltar: Evolving Geopolitics University of Malta, Valetta, 15/05/2014-17/05/2014.
2014 Gerry O'Reilly (2014) International Collaboration in Education: Planning Projects, Research, Training and Funding European Education, Research & Projects Swiss Embassy, Brussels, 01/07/2014-04/07/2014.
2013 Gerry O'Reilly (2013) Euro-Mediterranean Consortium's European & Eurogeo Geographers Contribution to furthering Euro-Mediterranean economic development Limassol, Cyprus, 18/10/2013-20/10/2013.
2013 Gerry O'Reilly (2013) EU-GEO - Association of Geographical Societies in Europe Conference: Europe: Europe, what’s next? Changing geographies and geographies of change The EU and Humanitarian Action: Breaking Down Boundaries University La Sapienza, Rome, 05/09/2013-07/09/2013.
2013 Gerry O'Reilly (2013) EUROGEO: Geography - Linking Tradition and Future Humanitarian Action and Aid: What Roles for Digital Education! Sint. Lodewijkscollege, Bruges, 09/05/2013-11/05/2013.
2013 Gerry O'Reilly (2013) EUGEO – Association of Geographical Societies in Europe Conference: Europe: Europe, what’s next? Changing geographies and geographies of change Practice and Theory in Geography: Experiences from International Collaboration for Teacher Education University La Sapienza, Rome, 05/09/2013-07/09/2013.
2012 Gerry O'Reilly (2012) Geography: Educational Performance and Development Education and Sustainable Development: Two Sides of the Same Coin Dimitrie Cantemir University, Tirgu Mures, Romania, 27/11/2012-29/11/2012.
2011 Gerry O'Reilly & Ruth McManus (2011) DICE Annual Conference: Embedding Diversity: You, me and diversity Embedding ‘diversity’ in undergraduate Geography for future educators St. Patrick’s College, Dublin Cith University, 26/11/2011-26/11/2011.
2011 G. O'Reilly with R. McManus, S. Hegarty, J. Cherry and A. Barry (2011) Realizing Bologna: Connecting Policy and Practice Conference 'Integrating citizenship into geography teaching and learning: enhancing understanding through fieldwork' Dublin City University, 07/06/2011-08/06/2011.
2011 Gerry O'Reilly (2011) Internationalization, Education and Mobility Internationalization, Education and Mobility: A Case Study from Ireland SPD-Dublin City University, Dublin, 08/06/2011-11/06/2011.
2011 G. O'Reilly with R. McManus, S. Hegarty, J. Cherry and A. Barry (2011) Annual Conference of the Irish Association for Social, Scientific and Environmental Education (IASSEE) Integrating sustainable development into geography teaching and learning: enhancing understanding through fieldwork St. Patrick's College, DCU, 03/02/2011-03/02/2011.
2011 G. O'Reilly with R. McManus, S. Hegarty, J. Cherry and A. Barry (2011) Realising Bologna: Connecting Policy and Practice Conference Realising Bologna: challenges and opportunities for enhancing geography teaching and learning Dublin City University, 07/06/2011-08/06/2011.
2011 Gerry O'Reilly (2011) Internationalisation and Teaching Placement - Comenius Association Conference Internationalization & student Placement SPD-DCU, 28/09/2011-30/09/2011.
2011 Gerry O'Reilly (2011) EGEA (European Geography Association for Students and Young Geographers) - EGEA Inaugural Lecture online via WIZIQ to universities and Centres throughout Europe Geographical Perspectives on Turkey and EU Integration Virtual, 08/02/2011-08/02/2011.
2001 Gerry O'Reilly (2001) Symbolic & Practical Dimensions of the Territorial Discourse in the Middle East: A Compar Territoriality, Identity, Ideology & the State Revisited in the Middle East European University Institute, Florence, 16/12/2001-19/12/2001.

Published Report

Year Publication
1995 A. Buttimer, G. O'Reilly, T. Stol & W. Jenkins. (1995) LLASS: Landscape & Life - Appropriate Scales for Sustainable Development. UCD, .
1994 Gerry O'Reilly (1994) Ceuta and the Spanish Sovereign Territories. IBRU Press, .
1992 Gerry O'Reilly (1992) Gibraltar. IBRU Press, .


Year Publication
2019 Gerry O'Reilly (2019) Brexit: the 2019 General Elections in Spain and British Gibraltar. Dublin: DCU Brexit Institute: ABST [Link]


Year Publication
2016 Alyssa McMurtry, Anadolu Agency News. Interview: Gerry O'Reilly (2016) How 'Brexit' could rock tiny UK territory of Gibraltar. CONS [Link]
2016 Henry Ridgwell: Voice of America. Email interview/Q&A: Gerry O'Reilly (2016) Gibraltar Fears Isolation, Economic Ruin If Britain Leaves EU. London: CONS [Link]
2013 Vanessa Barford - BBC News Magazine - Consultant: Gerry O'Reilly (2013) What are the competing claims over Gibraltar?. BBC: CONS [Link]

Online Article

Year Publication
2015 Gerry O'Reilly (2015) Remnants, Relics and Shadows of Empires in the Gibraltar Region. Duluth, USA: ELEA [Link]
2014 Gerry O'Reilly: World Political Review (2014) Spain’s Exclaves Prove to Be Security Boon as Well as Risk. USA: ELEA [Link]
2013 Gerry O'Reilly (2013) EU Humanitarian Action: Breaking Down Boundaries!. -European Journal of Geography: ELEA [Link]!.pdf


Year Publication
2012 Gerry O'Reilly (2012) Education, Geography and Sustainable Development. TV


Year Publication
1991 Gerry O'Reilly (1991) Ireland's Foreign Policy and the Less Developed Countries. Trinity College Dublin: CASE


Year Publication
2013 China Radio International: Today – News Plus. Interview: Gerry O'Reilly (2013) UK-Spanish Dispute: Gibraltar. PODCAST [Link]

Web Page

Year Publication
2018 Gerry O'Reilly, for RTE Brainstorm (2018) Gibraltar: the other major difficulty in Brexit negotiations. RTE-Dublin: WEBP [Link]
Certain data included herein are derived from the © Web of Science (2023) of Clarivate. All rights reserved.

Research Interests

Political and economic geography, 
Cultural geography,
Sustainable development
Regional specialisms:
MENA: Middle East and North Africa.
Sub-Saharan Africa & Developing Countries.
Europe / EU / Ireland.

Teaching Interests

Geopolitics, Political and Economic geography 
Humanitarian Action  
Sustainable Development & Research Methods
Political/Cultural Geography & Spaces of Memory.

Regional Specialisms:
Middle East and North Africa (MENA) 
Sub-Saharan Africa & Developing Countries

Modules Coordinated

Term Title Subject
2020 Humanitarian Action GY215
2022 Geopolitics: Middle East and North Africa GY303
2020 Geographical Research Methods - Geopolitics GY207