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Prof Peter Gray

27 University Square 0G.005


Tel. +44 28 9097 5226


Ms Cathy Devlin

26 University Square, Belfast, BT7 1NN

email or

Tel. +44 28 9097 3700

(Tues-Thurs only)


School of History, Anthropology, Philosophy and Politics (HAPP) / Mitchell Institute


396 x 417


Professor of Anthropology (HAPP) / Member of IS Steering Group

Political anthropology; public ritual; public order and policing in Northern Ireland; symbolism; ethnicity; nationalism and group identity; anthropology and public policy; Irish history; Orangeism, use of history and invention of tradition; the mass media; social theory.


Research Fellow in Conflict Studies (Mitchell Institute)

Peacebuilding and conflict transformation work in Northern Ireland, work on Orange Order parades, murals and other visual displays; segregation and sectarianism; interface; racism and minority ethnic communities. 


Lecturer in Anthropology (HAPP)

My research focuses on music, conflict, and cultures of resistance in Ireland and among the diaspora. I am particularly interested in the social impact of music-making and my work uses music as a platform to examine militant nationalism, social inclusion , and the legacy of colonialism.


ESRC Postdoctoral Fellow on the project  'Museums, Empire and Northern Irish Identity'.



School of Natural and Built Environment

DR DIRK BRANDHERM Reader in Archaeology (SNBE)

I am interested in the development of Bronze and Iron Age societies in Ireland and other parts of Western Europe. The focus of much of my current work is on material culture, prehistoric group identities and economies.


Research Fellow in Archaeology (SNBE)

I undertake the dendrochronological analysis of wood samples from Irish peat bogs, rivers and lakes, archaeological sites and standing buildings. I provide written reports and advice to archaeologists, building historians, environmentalists and others working in Ireland.


Director, Centre for Archaeological Fieldwork (SNBE)

The archaeology, history and architecture of Medieval Ireland (with particular interest in the Gaelic lordships of Ulster) and the Ulster Plantation; the archaeological investigation of the Irish diaspora in the USA, with particular reference to Lowell, Massachusetts; Irish vernacular buildings, farming practices, rural industries, and folk traditions (c.1700 to c.1950); children’s burial grounds (cillíní) in Ireland; the archaeological study of Irish soldiering during the First World War.

  DR PADDY GLEESON Senior Lecturer in Archaeology (SNBE)

Early medieval archaeology; landscape archaeology in later prehistoric and early medieval Northern Europe, working particular on royal landscapes, religion and kingship.

  PROF AUDREY HORNING Professor of Archaeology (SNBE) Comparative colonialism and the relationship between archaeology and contemporary identity, with a particular focus upon European expansion into the early modern Atlantic world(s). She has directed archaeological excavations in the US, Ireland, and the UK. Ongoing research focuses upon the potential of community-inclusive archaeology to contribute measurably towards conflict transformation.

Senior Lecturer in Geographical Information Science (SNBE)

My primary area of work in Ireland has focused on geospatial technologies applied to Irish Heritage sites and landscapes in both research and commercial capacities. These include remote sensing survey and analysis, and historic landscape characterisation at the Bru na Boinne World Heritage Site, Co. Meath

Professor of  Archaeology and Palaeoecology (SNBE)

My main areas of expertise lie in human osteoarchaeology and palaeopathology and I am interested in the health of the past populations of Ireland from all time periods. My research also focuses on Irish burial practices, and in particular on cillíní, unconsecrated burial grounds reserved largely for the burial of unbaptised infants. I am a member of the Irish-American Heritage Archaeological Project and my role has involved a study of the grave memorials of the first Irish settlers in Lowell, Massachusetts. I am the editor of the journal Childhood in the Past, and my work on past childhood within an Irish context has included projects on grave memorials and schools.


Professor in Archaeology & Palaeoecology (SNBE)

I am interested in Irish archaeology (particularly the later prehistoric period) and the relationship between past cultures and their environment. Much of my work focuses on Irish bogs, and the very rich archive of archaeological sites and palaeoenvironmental data that they contain.



Creative Arts

Drama, Film Studies and Music

School of Arts, English and Languanges (AEL)


Senior Lecturer in Drama (AEL)

A former Managing Editor of Theatre Ireland magazine, Programme Director of the Dublin Theatre Festival, and Artistic Director of the Lyric Theatre, Belfast, he continues work as a theatre director alongside his academic work, having recently directed revivals of Owen McCafferty’s Mojo Mickybo for Bedlam Theatre Company, Patrick McCabe’s Frank Pig Says Hello! For An Grianan Theatre, and Oscar Wilde at Home, a site-specific event in Florence Court House in Enniskillen for the Wilde Weekend. He has a long association with youth and community-based arts, most recently devising Days in the Bay with the Tiger’s Bay Men’s Group in Belfast. Publications include Playing the Wild Card for the Community Relations Council, and The Stagecraft of Brian Friel for Greenwich Exchange Books. He was director of the 1st Brian Friel Summer School, which took place in August 2015 in Redcastle, Donegal.


  DR SHONAGH HILL Marie Curie Fellow in Drama (AEL)

My research interests lie in the intersection of Irish studies, gender studies and performance studies. I am currently undertaking a Marie Curie Fellowship and my project focuses on ‘Generational Feminisms in Contemporary Northern Irish Performance’. My first monograph, Women and Embodied Mythmaking in Irish Theatre (Cambridge University Press, 2019) provides an historical overview of women’s contributions to, and an alternative genealogy of, modern Irish theatre.


Reader in Music (AEL)

Dr Sarah McCleave is a senior lecturer in musicology. She supervises doctoral dissertations on music in Ireland (1700-1850). Her research on Thomas Moore led to the Horizon 2020-funded project ERIN (Europe’s Reception of the Irish Melodies and National Airs: Thomas Moore in Europe), with outputs available at and also at She is also a contributor to the ‘Romantic National Song Network’,

Professor in Drama (AEL)

Research: My core research interests are dance and politics in Ireland, community/collaborative dance in Ireland, performance and philosophy, and cultural and affect studies. Current projects include work on abortion rights in Ireland, female choreographers in Ireland, dance and parenthood/the maternal, and dance and affect. I am a performer/choreographer member of Dance Ireland, a board member of Dance Limerick and co-president of the Irish Society for Theatre Research.
PROF CAHAL McLAUGHLIN Professor of Film Studies (AEL)

Director of the Prisons Memory Archive, a filmed collection of walk-and-talk interviews with those who passed through the Troubles prisons. Generally, the representation of memories in societies emerging from political violence. Also, some interest in Troubles themed cinema.

DR TRISH McTIGHE Senior Lecturer in Drama (AEL)

Research: My research expertise has two strands. My main area of expertise lies in the work of Samuel Beckett in the context of European avant-garde drama and theatre of the twentieth century and in relation to Irish theatre histories and performance cultures. My other strand of research and expertise lies in gender studies, queer theory and the history of feminist thought and activism, as these relate to broader currents of artistic and theatrical experimentation in the twentieth century.


Senior Lecturer in Film Studies (AEL) / Member of IS Steering Group

Research: My graduate research was in Irish Studies, and some of my subsequent work has been in the area of Irish film and visual culture.


Senior Lecturer in Drama (AEL)

Research: My research is primarily concerned with the role theatre and performance 'plays' in ongoing processes of conflict transformation in the North of Ireland, where various artists and activists have used theatre as a public forum for civic debate and to deal with issues of truth, remembrance, reconciliation, trauma, transitional justice, forgiveness and forgetting.



Queen's Business School (QBS)



Research Fellow in Business History (QMS)

Robin Adams is a Leverhulme Early Career Fellow in Economic History at Queen's. His research interests include social mobility and the careers of business elites, popular political fundraising, and the economic history of modern Ireland. His first monograph, Shadow of a Taxman: Who Funded the Irish Revolution?, was published by Oxford University Press in April 2022.


Senior Lecturer in Economics (QMS) / Member of IS Steering Group

Research: Graham is an economist specialising in long-run Irish economic and business history. He is co-editor of Irish Economic and Social History. His research covers the period from the 18th century to the present day. He has published on both contemporary and historical topics as varied as tax devolution in the current NI Assembly, New Zealand’s economy in an Irish ‘mirror’, the causes and consequences of Irish rent-seeking, the history of economic thought in Ireland, the role of globalisation in economic debates around Home Rule, the rise and fall of John De Lorean, the economics of violence and counter-terrorism in Northern Ireland, the rise and fall of the Celtic Tiger and Irish linen and demythologising the intellectual contributions of George O’Brien, T.K. Whitaker and Raymond Crotty.


Reader in Economics (QMS)

Research: I am an economic and business historian with research interests in banking crises, corporate governance, cultural economics, and quantitative social history. I have published on the origins of cooperative banking in Ireland in the early twentieth century. I am currently working towards building a new quantitative social history of Ireland in the nineteenth century using prison registers and other institutional records.


Senior Lecturer in  Economics (QMS)

Research: I am interested in Irish economic history. In particular, I have an interest in demography and the relationship between population and economic growth. Currently, I am involved in projects looking at the link between fertility and economic conditions prior to the famine, the impact of famine related migration on the British labour market and economy, and the rise of Sinn Féin in the 1918 election. My previous research includes projects on mixed marriages and schooling in Ireland

Research Fellow in Economics (QMS)

David's wider research focuses on regional and public economics, alongside economic and financial history. He is particularly interested in the economics of devolution, and the long-run performance of Northern Ireland’s economy. He is currently examining the reasons behind low levels of productivity in Northern Ireland, as part of the Northern Ireland Productivity Forum.



School of Social Sciences, Education and Social Work (SSESW)


Senior Lecturer in Education (SSESW)

My research includes the role education can play in promoting social cohesion and school improvement in divided societies. In particular the development of shared education and the promotion of school collaboration and networks in Northern Ireland and other divided settings such as Israel, Lebanon and the US. I am also the Northern Ireland lead on a cross-jurisdictional study of school exclusion in the UK with a particular interest in exploring informal exclusion and understanding the perspectives of leadership in the exclusion process in schools.


Lecturer in Education; Deputy Director, Centre for Children’s Rights (SSESW)

My research interests fall into these interrelated themes, with a focus on the context of Northern Ireland:

  • Citizenship/political education in divided societies, with a focus on education in the context of the transition from conflict to peace;
  • The role of former combatants in education for citizenship;
  • The relationship between history and citizenship education in addressing the legacy of the past.

Senior Lecturer in Education (SSESW)

I am interested in understanding how the complex relationships among language, land, and community inform learning; particularly in indigenous language reclamation contexts. I am the PI on research funded by the Spencer Foundation called Foghlaim thumoideachais idirghlúine: A study of family language development in Northern Ireland. This study examines intergenerational learning in Belfast kitchens by analysing the multimodal language use of Irish-speaking youth and English-speaking caregivers collaborating to prepare traditional food for their families


Professor Emeritus of Education (SSESW)

Research: My main research interest lies in the role of education in divided societies and much of this work has focused on schools in Northern Ireland. For the past 15 years or so I have carried out work on shared education involving the establishment of collaborative networks of Protestant, Catholic and Integrated schools to use network effects to promote reconciliation, school improvement and the more effective use of resources. I have also carried out extensive work on patterns of participation and access to education, and the impact of education policy on equality. More generally I am interested in the history of education in Ireland.


UNESCO Professor of Education; Director of the Centre for Shared Education (SSESW)

Research: The role of education in divided societies, including Northern Ireland.


Research Fellow in Education (SSESW)

Research: Archaeology of the Irish National Schools; childhood in Ireland from c.1600-1948.
DR CATHAL McMANUS Lecturer in Education (SSESW) . / Member of IS Steering Group

Research: My research interests centre on conflict and conflict transformation. I am particularly interested in the factors that help to generate conflict and the role that adult education can play in addressing such issues. My current research explores how long-term processes of “Othering” helps to generate communal tensions and an exploration of how history is used, alongside contemporary grievances, to maintain social divisions. Related to this I am interested in processes of identity formation – particularly in national identities and nationalism.


English Literature and Creative Writing

School of Arts, English and Languages (AEL)


Professor of English (AEL)

My research focus is on modern Irish poetry, from W.B. Yeats to the present day, and on Irish literature of the First World War.


UKRI Future Leaders Fellow in English (AEL)

My research engages with the literature and culture of the long twentieth century. My current research project looks at ‘Love across the Divide’ in literature and culture in Northern Ireland from 1968-present. I'm particularly interested in: migration, diaspora and the postcolonial Atlantic; haunting, intertextuality and memory; and the afterlives of colonial and (bio)political violence.

PROF MOYRA HASLETT Professor of English (AEL) / Member of IS Steering Group

My research interests include culture (particularly literature and song) in eighteenth-century Ireland. I have published articles and book chapters on the writings of Jonathan Swift, on Irish song, and on fiction by Irish writers in the period 1680-1820. I am co-editor of the series ‘Early Irish Fiction’, which has so far published critical editions of seven novels by Irish authors with Four Courts Press and an accompanying special issue of the Irish University Review (2011). I acted as principal investigator on the AHRC-funded Irish Song Project, which has resulted in an electronic database of c.250 songs from the earliest beginnings to 1840 and a forthcoming collection of essays on early Irish song. I am currently the editor of the first volume of Irish Literature in Transition, 1700-1780 (Cambridge University Press, commissioned).

DR STEFANIE LEHNER Senior Lecturer in Irish Literature (AEL)

My research interests are in the crosscurrents of contemporary Irish and Scottish literature as well as ‘post’-conflict cultures, with a focus on Northern Ireland. I am specifically interested in the relationship between politics, ethics, and aesthetics and my work takes inspiration from the field of postcolonial, memory, and trauma studies. I am author of Subaltern Ethics in Contemporary Scottish and Irish Literature: Tracing Counter-Histories (Palgrave Macmillan, 2011), and currently editing a collection of essays on The Promise of Peace in Northern Ireland (MUP, forthcoming).  I am currently involved in two Irish Studies related research projects under the Partnership for Conflict, Crime and Security Research (PaCCS) scheme: LGBTQ Visions of Peace in a Society Emerging from Conflict, and Sounding Conflict: From Resistance to Reconciliation.



Reader in Victorian Studies (AEL)


Lecturer in Creative Writing (AEL)

I am a playwright for stage and radio.  I often write plays about, or set in, Ireland.  Examples include Monsters, Dinosaurs, Ghosts produced in 2015 at the Abbey (published by Methuen Bloomsbury) and The Ballad of Shane O'Neill for BBC Radio 4 (about the 16th-century Ulster chief).


Reader in English Literature (AEL)

Dr Gail McConnell is the author of Northern Irish Poetry and Theology (Palgrave, 2014) and is one of the editors of The Irish Review. Gail’s research interests are in modern Irish and British literature, with particular interests in Northern Irish poetry and the relationships between violence, artistic practice and literary reception. She is a contributor to The Oxford Handbook of Modern Irish Poetry (OUP, 2012) and has work published or forthcoming in Irish University Review and boundary 2. A member of staff within the Seamus Heaney Centre for Poetry at Queen’s, Gail co-ordinates the reading events programme throughout the year and has been involved in organizing conferences, most recently Seamus Heaney: A Conference and Commemoration.


Marie Skłowdowska-Curie Research Fellow, AEL

I am working on the project ‘Shakespeare and the Irish Actor’ (SIA). This project brings together and evaluates the contributions and achievements of Irish actors across hundreds of years of Shakespeare performance on screen and stage in Ireland, North America and Europe. ‘Shakespeare and the Irish Actor’ reappraises the histories of so-called Great Shakespeareans (including Kenneth Branagh, Peter O’Toole, and Fiona Shaw) through the lens of Irishness. It explores the global history of Irish actors performing Shakespeare and, moving between stage, screen and digital forms, brings to light an unrecognised performance archive and a hidden history. My monograph, Irish Shakespeares: Gender, Sexuality, and Performance in the Twenty-First Century, is forthcoming from Routledge.


Professor of Creative Writing and Director of Seamus Heaney Centre (AEL)

Glenn’s ten novels to date are: Burning Your Own (1988), a Rooney Prize and Betty Trask first novel prize-winner; Fat Lad (1992); Black Night at Big Thunder Mountain (1995), The International (1999); Number 5 (2003), That Which Was (2004), The Third Party (2007); The Mill For Grinding Old People Young, the inaugural One City One Book choice for Belfast (2012); The Rest Just Follows (2014); and Gull (2016). He has also published two essay collections, Lapsed Protestant (2006) and Here’s Me Here (2014), and the family memoir, Once upon a Hill: Love in Troubled Times (2009). Short stories and plays have been broadcast on BBC Radio 3 and Radio 4, and he has also presented television documentaries on literary and cultural subjects. His feature film Good Vibrations (co-written with Colin Carberry) was released in 2013. In 2009 he was awarded a Lannan Literary Fellowship.


Senior Lecturer in English Literature (AEL)

My research has probed into new frontiers in the neglected area of class in Irish culture particularly in terms of literature. My recent and current projects focus on: crowd-sourced festival history; creativity on the margins; northern Irish working-class history and culture; Irish diaspora histories; Irish opposition to the First World War. I am working on a new monograph, Nationalism and Class in Twentieth-Century Ireland (complete 2018); have been contracted to edit (and contribute to) what promises to be a ground-breaking, 24-chapter volume, Cambridge History of Irish Working-Class Writing (now complete and submitted to CUP); and been contracted to co-edit a further collection on diaspora history and culture, Rethinking the Irish Diaspora: After the Gathering (Palgrave, 2017; and organised an associated conference, amongst many other events).

DR DANIEL S. ROBERTS Reader in English Literature (AEL)

My interest in Irish studies focuses on Ireland’s relationship to British imperialism, especially in the long eighteenth century and with respect to India.

  • I was project leader for QUB for an Irish Research Council project led by Professor David Dickson of TCD on ‘Ireland, Education and Empire’.
  • I edited Charles Johnston’s novel, The History of Arsaces, Prince of Betlis (1774) for the Early Irish Fiction series.
  • I organised a conference in June 2014 titled ‘Ireland and the Colonies, 1775-1947’ for the Institute for Collaborative Research in the Humanities at QUB. 

Senior Lecturer in English Literature (AEL)

My research is centred on nineteenth-century Irish writing and culture, with particular interests in the Gothic, the short story, and the life and work of the poet James Clarence Mangan.



Geography, Architecture and Planning

School of Natural and Built Environment (SNBE)



Reader in Human Geography (SNBE)

Research: My research centres on the historical geography of science and religion in the nineteenth century.  I have recently completely an AHRC-funded project on scientific culture in nineteenth-century Belfast.


Professor of Historical Geography (SNBE) / Member of IS Steering Group

Research: My research encompasses maps and mapping of Ireland, past and present, with current interests in the material culture of the Ordnance Survey in Ireland. Thanks to funding received from the British Academy’s International Mobility and Partnership scheme, I have developed a close collaboration between Queen’s University Belfast and University of Calcutta to explore further the Irish-India scientific, imperial and cultural connections that were forged through the linked geodetic surveys of both countries in the 19th century.


Senior Lecturer in Architecture (SNBE)

Research: StreetSpace is an interdisciplinary research project that seeks to understand the significance of mixed use urban streets, by analysing their physical, historical and experiential aspects. Streets are public spaces that connect diverse areas of the city, weaving together the urban fabric. Through the study of streets in Belfast we are looking for the significance of local mixed use streets, defining their identity and authenticity and the tangible and intangible elements that make them unique.



School of History, Anthropology, Philosophy and Politics

DR IAN CAMPBELL Reader in Early-Modern Irish History  (HAPP)  

I write about the history of early modern Irish political thought, and the history of ideas in early modern Europe more generally. I direct the ERC research project ‘War and the Supernatural in Early Modern Europe’.

DR MAURICE CASEY Research Fellow in History (HAPP)

Maurice Casey is a research fellow on: Queer Northern Ireland: Sexuality before Liberationfunded by the AHRC (2022-2025).

Personal webpage


PROF MARIE COLEMAN Professor in Modern Irish History (HAPP)


The Irish revolution, 1916-23; History and commemoration; especially First World War and 'Decade of Centenaries'; Independent Ireland; Women in modern Ireland
DR SOPHIE COOPER Lecturer in Liberal Arts (AEL)

My research focuses on situational influences on identity formation in the nineteenth century. Using the Irish communities of Melbourne and Chicago as case studies, this research investigates different influences on identity and nationalism.


Professor Emeritus of Irish History (HAPP)

Irish history since c.1500; Irish Catholicism; The urban history of Belfast; The Irish diaspora and the construction of a world economy


Professor in History (HAPP)

I have written a book about Enoch Powell, the Conservative and Ulster Unionist politician (Oxford University Press, 2019). I am interested in the history of Ulster Unionism, especially in the second half of the twentieth century.


Research Fellow (AEL)

History of Medicine during the Northern Ireland Troubles.

PDRF on Acts of Union project which is exploring mixed marriages in modern Ireland.


Lecturer in History (HAPP)

My research focuses on the history and culture of the 'wider Gaelic world' (Ireland, the Highlands and Islands of Scotland, and the Isle of Man) in period, c.1100-c.1600. I am particularly interested in exploring: (i) the evolving relationship between these regions and (ii) their interactions with the monarchies of England and Scotland during key events such as the Hundred Years War, the Wars of the Roses, and the Tudor period, and (iii) engaging with Irish and Latin source material.

PROF ELAINE FARRELL Professor in Irish Social and Economic History (HAPP) My research focuses on Irish female criminals in the nineteenth century. I am currently working on a study of the female convict prison. I am also CI on the AHRC-funded ‘Bad Bridget’ project (with Dr Leanne McCormick, Ulster University), which examines criminal and deviant Irish women in New York, Boston and Toronto, 1838-1918
PROF MARIE-THERESE FLANAGAN Professor Emerita of Medieval History (HAPP)

History of 12th-century Ireland spanning the conventional periodisation between pre-conquest and post-conquest Ireland. Current research projects include an edition of the charters of Strongbow (Richard de Clare, earl of Pembroke/Strigoil) relating to lands in Normandy, England, Wales, and Ireland and a study of St Thomas’s Abbey, Dublin, the only English royal monastic foundation in Ireland, drawing on two unpublished registers.

Peter Gray PROF PETER GRAY Professor of Modern Irish History / Director, Institute of Irish Studies (HAPP)

I am a historian of British-Irish relations in the 19th century, especially the Great Famine of 1845-50 and its consequences and remembrance, the ‘land question’, the development of the Irish poor law and welfare systems, and 19th-century British governance in Ireland in comparative context. My most recent work is a study of the Ulster agrarian radical and Chartist William Sharman Crawford.

PROF CRAWFORD GRIBBEN Professor of Early-Modern British History (HAPP)

Religious radicalism in 17th-Century Britain and Ireland. Currently working on a book on ‘Ireland: A Christian History’.

PROF DAVID HAYTON Professor Emeritus of Early-Modern British and Irish History (HAPP)

The political and religious history of Ireland, c.1680–1750. Currently preparing an edition of the political correspondence of the Brodrick family, 1687–1729 and researching the history of parliamentary elections in Ireland in the eighteenth century.

DR ANDREW HOLMES Reader in Modern Irish History (HAPP)

History of Protestantism in Ulster from 1600 to present day, especially Presbyterianism. Religious history of Ireland.

  DR TOM HULME Reader in History (HAPP)

I am a historian of modern urban culture with particular interests in belonging, gender and citizenship. I am currently researching the queer history of Belfast and its region from the late 19th to mid-20th century: Queer Northern Ireland: Sexuality before Liberationfunded by the AHRC (2022-2025).


PROF LIAM KENNEDY Professor Emeritus of Economic History (HAPP)
  • The Great Famine in mid-19th century Ireland
  • The ‘Troubles’ in Northern Ireland, 1966 to the present
  • Loyalist and Republican Paramilitary ‘Punishment’ Attacks, 1970 to the present,
  • Social Change in 20th century Irish Rural Society
DR CIARAN McCABE Lecturer in History (HAPP)

I am a social historian of 19th- and 20th-century Ireland and Britain, and my interests focus on the fields of the history of poverty and welfare, women’s history, ecclesiastical history and urban history. My publications have established me as a significant contributor to the social history of modern Ireland, in a transatlantic context.

PROF FEARGHAL McGARRY Professor of 20th Century Irish History (HAPP) / Member of IS Steering Group

My research focuses on 20th century Irish history, with a particular focus on politics and culture in the revolutionary and interwar periods. I also work on historical memory, commemoration and public history, including the representation of the past in film.

 ‌ PROF MARGARET O’CALLAGHAN Professor in History and Politics (HAPP) / Member of IS Steering Group Her interests are in Irish political thought, the politics of Irish literature, British high politics, the politics of commemoration and memory and modern Irish cultural and political history. She has published widely in all of these areas and has supervised over forty MA dissertations and twelve doctoral dissertations.
PROF SEAN O'CONNELL Professor of British and Irish Social History

Social history of 20th Century Britain and Northern Ireland; working class culture; consumer credit; masculinity; oral history; social history of Belfast

PROF MARY O’DOWD Professor Emerita of Gender History (HAPP)

My primary research interest is in Irish gender history. History of marriage and the family. I am also beginning a new research project on the history of old age in early modern Ireland.

PROF OLWEN PURDUE Professor of Modern Social History

My primary research interests are in the social and economic history of 19th and 20th-century Ireland, in particular focusing on social class, power and resistance. I also have a strong interest in public history in divided societies. I direct the Centre for Public History at Queen's and am a board member of the Irish Museums Association. I have published on landed elites and urban poverty and welfare, and have a monograph forthcoming on the history of children and the workhouse in industrial Belfast.

DR EMMA REISZ Lecturer in Imperial and Asian history (HAPP)

Ireland, the Irish and China in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, particularly Sir Robert Hart and the Chinese Maritime Customs; Ireland and British imperialism in Asia

DR BARRY SHEPPARD Project Co-ordinator (EEECS). Email

Research: the movement of socio-religious ideas in an Irish and transnational context; the ideological connections between Irish and international religious organisations.  I am currently converting my PhD thesis on the Irish rural organisation Muintir na Tire into a book for publication.

PROF DIANE URQUHART Professor of Gender History (HAPP)

Modern Irish women's history; Ulster unionist women; Londonderry family; history of divorce; history of abortion

Irish Language and Literature

School of Arts, English and Languages (AEL)

  DR SÍOBHRA AIKEN Lecturer in Irish (AEL) / Member of IS Steering Group

Síobhra Aiken is based in Roinn na Gaeilge agus an Léinn Cheiltigh (Department of Irish and Celtic Studies). Her research interests include: modernist Irish-language poetry; twentieth-century Irish-language literature; the Gaelic Revival in the United States; 'trauma' and emigration during the Irish Revolution (1916–23); fictionalised testimony by veterans of the Irish Revolution; comparative studies of the Irish and Spanish Civil Wars. Her monograph, Spiritual Wounds: Trauma, Testimony and the Irish Civil War, is forthcoming from Irish Academic Press. She is also completing a study of the Gaelic poet, Pádraig Ó hÉigeartaigh (1871–1936), of Springfield, Massachusetts (Cló Léann na Gaeilge).

DR FRANCES KANE Research Fellow on the Northern Ireland Place-Name Project (AEL)

My main area of research and teaching expertise is Celtic Languages (Theoretical Syntax, Historical Linguistics and Onomastics). I am a Research Fellow in the School of Arts, English and Languages, where I work on toponyms under the auspices of The Northern Ireland Place-Names Project. This research involves conducting analyses of historical toponymic forms with a view to establishing their linguistic origin, thus an extension of my doctoral research which applied formal syntactic theory to analyses of Irish.

DR MARCAS MAC COINNIGH Senior Lecturer in Irish and Celtic Studies (AEL)

My research focus is on:

  • Stereotypes, Stereotyping, & In-Out Group Identity
  • Language, Identity, & Conflict Resolution in Belfast and beyond.

My principal research interests lie in the areas of linguistics (particularly onomastics); Irish and Scottish Gaelic literary texts; and Irish and Scottish identity and relations in the medieval and modern periods. He is Director of the Northern Ireland Place-Name Project ( and has contributed two volumes (one in collaboration with Gregory Toner) to the Place-Names of Northern Ireland series.

He is currently completing his monograph on the toponymy of the plain of Macha, centred on the ecclesiastical capital of Ireland at Armagh and, closeby, Emain Macha (Navan Fort), the focal centre of Ulster kingship in the medieval period. He is also working (in collaboration with Conchúr Mag Eacháin, UCD) on providing a digitised edition of Wagner’s four-volume Linguistic Atlas and Survey of Irish Dialects for the School of Celtic Studies in the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies.

PROF GREGORY TONER Professor of Irish (AEL)

Research: Greg’s research focusses primarily on medieval Gaelic literature and he is particularly interested in historiography and story, including narrative modes and cultural context. He also works on onomastics and lexicography and is editor of the electronic Dictionary of the Irish Language (eDIL).



School of Law (SOL)

  DR ANNA BRYSON Professor in Law (SOL)

My research has developed along three closely related lines: modern Irish history, socio-legal studies and transitional justice. Underpinning all of these is an interest in oral history methodology and practice. I have worked across a number of RCUK-funded interdisciplinary projects in recent years including: Lawyers in Conflict and Transition, Apologies, Abuses and Dealing with the Past and Brexit Law NI. I have published three books and more than a dozen articles, book chapters and specialist reports. I recently co-edited a special e-edition of Social and Legal Studies on the theme of transitional justice and I am currently working on a co-authored CUP monograph on lawyers in conflict and transition. Together with Professor Sean O’Connell and other QUB colleagues I helped to establish the QUOTE (Queen’s University Oral History Technology and Ethics) hub and I am the UK Oral History Society’s regional representative for Northern Ireland. I am member of the AHRC Peer Review College and serve on the board of a number of NGOs including the Committee on the Administration of Justice and Diversity Challenges.

PROF BRICE DICKSON Professor Emeritus of International and Comparative Law (SOL) / Member of IS Steering Group

I am interested in three particular aspects of the Irish legal system: (1) the performance of the Irish Supreme Court, (2) the extent to which Irish law protects human rights and (3) the respects in which the legal systems on the two parts of the island of Ireland are convergent and divergent. In 2017 I am on course to publish a book with Oxford University Press entitled The Irish Supreme Court: Historical and Comparative Perspectives.

  PROF COLIN HARVEY Professor of Human Rights Law (SOL/Mitchell Inst.)

He has served as Head of the Law School, a member of Senate, a Director of the Human Rights Centre, and as a Director of Research. Before returning to Queen’s in 2005 he was Professor of Constitutional and Human Rights Law at the University of Leeds. He has held visiting positions at the University of Michigan, Fordham University, and the London School of Economics and Political Science. He has taught on the George Washington University – Oxford University Summer School in International Human Rights Law, and on the international human rights programme at the University of Oxford. He is a member of the Academic Panel at Doughty Street Chambers, and a Senior Research Associate, Refugee Law Initiative, School of Advanced Study, University of London. He has served as a Commissioner on the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission, and as a member of the Northern Ireland Higher Education Council. He is the Editor of the Series Human Rights Law in Perspective (Hart-Bloomsbury) and is on the editorial boards of Human Rights Law ReviewNorthern Ireland Legal Quarterly and European Human Rights Law Review. He has written and taught extensively on human rights law and policy and recently led an ESRC funded project on the consequences of Brexit for Northern Ireland (


Dr Lawther’s research interests are in the fields of transitional justice, truth recovery, victims, ex-combatants and conflict transformation.  Her article ‘Securing’ the Past: Policing and the Contest over Truth in Northern Ireland’, British Journal of Criminology, 2010, was awarded the Brian Williams Article Prize by the British Society of Criminology. Her monograph Truth, Denial and Transition: Northern Ireland and the Contested Past  was published by the Routledge Transitional Justice Series in 2014. In 2015 she was awarded an AHRC Early Career Research Grant for a project on 'Voice, Agency and Blame: Victimhood and the Imagined Community in Northern Ireland'.


School of History, Anthropology, Philosophy and Politics (HAPP)

PROF JOHN BARRY Professor of Green Politics (HAPP)

My main areas of research are the politics and political economy of un/sustainability, climate breakdown and low carbon energy transitions in Ireland and beyond, including issues around divestment from fossil fuels and a just and equitable transition away from unsustainability; post-growth economics and replacing or supplementing GDP measurements and policy objectives with qualitative and ecologically informed socio-economic ones; a subsidiary interest in in loyalist working class politics and the ‘double transition’ from war to peace to neoliberalism in post-Agreement Northern Ireland.

PROF RICHARD ENGLISH Professor of Politics (HAPP); Director, Mitchell Institute

History of Irish nationalism; the IRA; political violence; the Northern Ireland Troubles; comparative terrorism

  DR CLARA FISCHER Research Fellow in Politics (HAPP)

Clara Fischer is an Illuminate Fellow working in the areas of social and political theory, feminist theory, and gender politics. She has particular  research interests in Irish feminisms, and gender and sexuality in Ireland. Key publications include:



DR RONIT BERGER HOBSON Lecturer in Politics/IR

My research lies in the realms of international security and conflict studies. I focus on violent non-state actors operating in various conflicts. I pay special attention to organisational dynamics and leadership personalities and research the influence they have on conflict processes and dynamics. Case wise, I focus on the various actors in the Northern Ireland conflict and in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict but I also look into violent non state actors more broadly.

  PROF DEBBIE LISLE Professor of International Relations (HAPP / Mitchell Inst)
Professor Lisle has explored how war and conflict are exhibited in museum spaces, with particular attention to how objects and materials often signify in unruly ways. While her background is International Relations, she has examined museum representations of the Troubles, as well as wider tourist encounters with remnants of violence in Northern Ireland.
I am also on the Academic Advisory Board for the Ulster Museum’s ‘Collecting the Troubles and Beyond’
DR MUIRIS MAC CARTHAIGH Professor in Politics (HAPP)

My research broadly concerns the government and politics of the Republic of Ireland/ Irish Free State since 1922. I have authored and edited a number of books on the institutions of the Irish state, including textbooks on the government and parliament, and my post-doctoral research involved the development of the Irish State Administration Database which tracks the evolution of Irish state structures over time.  My most recent project concerns the Irish response to the economic crisis starting in 2008, with a particular focus on the public sector reform work of the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform. I am an Executive Committee member of the Political Studies Association of Ireland.

PROF CATHAL McCALL Professor of Politics (HAPP/Mitchell Inst)

The Irish Borderscape; cross-border cooperation as conflict transformation; Brexit and the Irish border

DR PETER McLOUGHLIN Senior Lecturer in Politics (HAPP)

Politics of Northern Ireland since the 1960s; Civil Rights; the SDLP and John Hume; the Peace Process; NI and the European Union; US and the NI conflict

DR JAMIE POW Lecturer in Politics (HAPP)

British and Irish politics, quantitative methods, democratic reform, and conflict transformation. His work has been published in Parliamentary Affairs and Irish Political Studies. Jamie previously served on the advisory group of the Citizens’ Assembly for Northern Ireland.

  DR BRENDAN STURGEON Research Fellow in Politics (HAPP)

Brendan is currently working on an evaluation of a programme led by The Executive Office NI that aims to reduce criminality and paramilitarism throughout Northern Ireland, entitled Communities In Transition. 

 His research interests also include segregation and policing in post-conflict societies.

  PROF GRAHAM WALKER Professor emeritus of Politics (HAPP)

Political history and contemporary politics of Northern Ireland; Irish-Scottish Relations.



School of Social Studies, Education and Social Work (SSESW)

PROF JOHN D. BREWER Professor of Post Conflict Studies (Mitchell Institute)

I work on the Irish peace process in comparative perspective, especially in comparison to South Africa and Sri Lanka, and with respect to the sociology and psychology of peace processes, such as emotions, memory, truth recovery and atonement strategies, victim issues, and religion and civil society.

  DR GLADYS GANIEL Professor in Sociology (SSESW / Mitchell Inst)

The role of religion in conflict and reconciliation in Northern Ireland; religion on the island of Ireland; religion on the island of Ireland during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Past projects: Considering Grace: Presbyterians and the Troubles; Unity Pilgrim: The Life of Fr Gerry Reynolds CSsR

PROF KATY HAYWARD Professor in Sociology (SSESW) / Member if IS Steering Group

Centring on Ireland, north and south: Cross-border conflict and cooperation; EU integration (inc. ‘Brexit’ and its impact on Ireland); Peace and conflict processes; Political sociology; Political discourses, protest and violence.

DR JONATHAN HEANEY Lecturer in Sociology (SSESW)

My current research, on what I am calling ‘the emotional state’, which will explore the extent to which the state is involved in the construction and symbolic legitimization of specific types of emotional life and culture (and the delegitimization of others), in areas such as education (‘emotional literacy’), social welfare, and the extent to which emotions have become a form of ‘capital’, especially in party politics. This work will look at the Irish case in a comparative context. 

DR SARAH JANKOWITZ Lecturer in Criminology (SSESW)

My research interests cut across sociology, victimology, social psychology and peace studies, though coalesce around critical, feminist analyses of how societies respond to and recover from violent conflict. I focus in particular on complex, intractable social processes which impact the practice of building peace including the construction and representation of victimhood, identity and intergroup relations. I am keen to develop further in-depth qualitative research on local civil society contributions to peacebuilding and transitional justice, and gendered experiences of conflict and peace. My applied work around dealing with the legacy of the past in Northern Ireland informs my commitment to practice-oriented, participatory research, with a view to enabling a more reflexive peacebuilding praxis in Northern Ireland and further afield.

  PROF JOHN NAGLE Professor of Sociology (SSESW)

My research examines non-sectarian social movements in Northern Ireland, particularly LGBTQ, feminist and labour groups. I also have an interest in power-sharing, identity and peacebuilding in divided cities on a comparative basis. I approach these research themes through ethnographic methods.


Visiting Researchers 2020-25

The Institute of Irish Studies hosts Visiting Research Scholars collaborating with academics at Queen's.

CLICK HERE for information on how to apply for Visiting Scholar status.


Name Title Home Institution

Discipline and Project

Contact Period


Jewish collections held at QUB Special Collections and Archives 2020-3


History of Irish emigration 2020-23
PROF JOHN WILSON FOSTER VS University of British Columbia (Emeritus) /QUB

English Literature

  1. Production of written culture from and by select Northern Irish big houses, 1850-2000.
  2. A critical biography of Lady Constance Annesley 2020-23

English Literature

Belfast writing and writers 2022-25
DR ALICE JOHNSON VS Belfast Metropolitan College


The middle classes in nineteenth-century Belfast 2020-23


A study of female political influence among elites in early 19C Britain with particular focus on Emily Lamb. 2022-5


Displays of flags in loyalist areas of inner east Belfast. A long term survey in collaboration with Prof Dominic Bryan 2021-4


Bath Estate, Co. Monaghan (1568-1920) 2022-5

English Literature

Women Writers and Post-Conflict Northern Ireland 2021-4




Working class literature and Irish speakers in an urban contex 2022-5


A research and publication programme concerned with the interaction between vernacular human culture and the more-than-human world in the development of a cultural geography cognisant of the complexity of Ulster Scots culture and its role in poiesis and place making in the local context. 2022-25
DR LUCIA POZZI VS University of Sassari


Infant and Child Mortality in early 20th Century Ireland: Class, religion and place of residence. Using econometric techniques and  the digitised 1911 Census of Ireland, in collaboration with Prof Liam Kennedy 2023-24


Irish Studies Steering Group

The Steering Group is made of of subject and student representatives and advises the Director on the management and strategic development of Irish Studies at Queen's.

Prof Peter Gray (Chair) Irish Studies (HAPP)  
Ms Cathy Devlin Irish Studies (HAPP)  
Prof Dominic Bryan Anthropology (HAPP)  
Dr Paddy Gleeson Archaeology (SNBE)   
Dr Des O'Rawe Creative Arts (AEL)  
Dr Graham Brownlow Economics (QMS)  
Dr Cathal McManus Education (SSESW)  
Prof Moyra Haslett English Literature (AEL)  
Prof Keith Lilley Geography (SNBE)  
Prof Fearghal McGarry History (HAPP)  
Dr Siobhra Aiken Irish Language and Literature (AEL)  
Prof Brice Dickson Law (Law)  
Dr Margaret O’Callaghan Politics (HAPP)  
Prof Katy Hayward  Sociology (SSESW)  
  MA Representative (PGT)    
  Postgrad Representative (PGR)    
  Postgrad Representative (PGR)    

Dr Melissa Fagan

(University of Chester)

External Examiner, MA Irish Studies  


Former Research Staff

For a list of our former Research Fellows in Irish Studies (1970-2011), click here: Former Staff