CKI International Advisory Board brings high profile academics and professionals

CKI International Advisory Board brings high profile academics and professionals-image

Monday, 22 May 2006

Galway, 22nd May 2006 – NUI Galway will host its first International Advisory Board meeting for the Community Knowledge Initiative around the area of civic engagement in universities and society on 25th and 26th May 2006. This will be a joining of high profile academics and people who are committed to the vision of change in society, as well as an opportunity for the CKI to take recommendations for the future of the project. The role of active participation is being entrusted to less people and the area around the ability to identify and understand social and public policy in order to increase active engagement will be discussed. Amongst the high profile people that will be at this meeting will be Professor Ahmed Bawa, Academic Deputy Vice-Chancellor at the University of KwaZulu Natal, and Sister Stanislaus Kennedy, founder of Focus Ireland. Professor Bawa went from being a President's Awardee to the Ford Foundation and today works with the University of KwaZulu Natal around policy and the role of education in changing society. He contributes to the change of society of South Africa and beyond and takes a special interest in social responsibility. Sister Stanislaus was the first religious Sister to be appointed by the State as a member of a Health Board. She was a founder member of the National Federation of Youth Clubs, chaired what is now the Combat Poverty Agency, and founded Social Innovations Ireland to identify new and emerging needs. She is also an author of several books and has written a wide range of articles, as well as lectures on social policy issues. She has a vision of change in Irish society and works daily to contribute to that vision. Additionally attending will be Reverend Bill Lies, University of Notre Dame, Dr. Dean McGovern, Campus Compact, Professor J.M. Monaghan, Mechanical & Manufacturing Engineering, Trinity College Dublin, Ms. Moira Swinbank, TimeBank, UK, and Ms. Elena Saraceno, The Unit of Consistency of Rural Development in the Directorate General of Agriculture and Rural Development, European Commission. The CKI is a venture at NUI Galway that promotes partnership with communities and instils in students a sense of civic engagement and active citizenship. Through a volunteering project entitled ALIVE and community based/service learning modules in academic programmes, the CKI hopes to connect the students on a deeper level with their community, underpinning each person's civic responsibility. - ends – For further information, please contact Lorraine McIlrath, CKI Project Coordinator at 091 495234 or email lorraine.mcilrath@nuigalway.ie.

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Consumer protection is casualty of current housing law and policy in Ireland

Consumer protection is casualty of current housing law and policy in Ireland-image

Monday, 15 May 2006

An absence of regulation in the Irish housing market means there is a severe lack of protection for consumers, according to Dr. Padraic Kenna, a lecturer in law at NUI Galway and author of the newly published Housing Law and Policy in Ireland. "The massive imbalance in power between producers and consumers in Irish housing is breathtaking. Indeed, Irish State approval is symbolised by the lack of support for any consumer organisation devoted to housing, or representing house-buyers, private or social housing tenants. In this era of participation, partnership and inclusion, it is truly remarkable that the organised lobby of producers and suppliers largely influences legislation, policy and subsidy schemes. The Irish consumer is faced with a housing market that lacks effective competition, consumer protection or regulation - widely accepted controls on any properly functioning market system," comments Dr. Padraic Kenna. He continues, "Many Irish housing laws are rooted in centuries old legal principles. It is vital that concepts of property law are modernised to suit the needs of a global economy, but also to encompass consumer rights and indeed human rights. Effective legislation could ensure proper consumer protection, real competition, truthful descriptions, high standards and speedy, inexpensive remedies for defects." Dr. Kenna points out that, despite recommendations from the Law Reform Commission and others, consumers remain vulnerable to unfair contract terms and price fluctuations in the pre-contract stage of purchasing a new home. Further down the line, should individual consumers discover defects in their properties – walls which resonate with neighbours music, leaks, and other general defects, remedies can only be effectively pursued through lengthy and expensive court action. A more recent illustration of the weak position of consumers is the imposition of compulsory management agreements covering grass cutting, lighting etc., often with no limits on the exorbitant contributions payable". "There is now a growing culture and legal progression of housing rights across the world. In market economies where new housing is largely provided through the market, however, these housing rights standards often incorporate many consumer rights. Issues of equality in access, exploitation of vulnerable people, affordability, facilities for children, lack of segregation etc., are powerfully linked with consumer rights issues. Clearly, advocates could advance consumer rights as part of the promotion of housing rights. We need to re-examine the role of law in the housing arena. Is it enough for law to remain particularly supply-side oriented, (although solicitors remain the primary individual housing consumer rights champions)? Law provides the enforceable framework for the housing and mortgage market to operate. However, in modern societies it can also advance equality, consumer protection, competition and social inclusion within that same market system. In researching this book all the evidence shows that traditional housing law and policy approaches, based on simple property law concepts are being transcended by people-centred approaches. Strengthening the power of housing consumers would be an obvious move in this direction", added Dr. Kenna. Housing Law and Policy in Ireland, the first book on housing law and policy for the Irish market, offers a timely and important contribution to this hotly debated issue in Ireland today. Drawing on legislative, case law, policy and human rights norms, it offers a clear description of the origin and current status of Irish housing law and policy. Property rights, mortgages, planning, building standards, regulation, rural housing, private renting, State housing supports and subsidies are explained and analysed. Indirect measures which impact on housing law and policy, such as consumer rights, human rights, family and equality law and other developments are revealed, along with the emerging European dimension to all aspects of Irish housing law and policy. Housing Law and Policy in Ireland is published by Clarus Press and is available online www.claruspress.ie or by telephone order on 0567790 052 or 014150 439. The official launch of the book is taking place at NUI Galway on Thursday 18 May. - ends - For further information please contact Dr. Padraic Kenna, Faculty of Law, NUI Galway, Tel: 091 493230.

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NUI Galway study highlights importance of preventative care for cardiac patients

NUI Galway study highlights importance of preventative care for cardiac patients-image

Monday, 8 May 2006

Research carried out by NUI Galway's Department of General Practice has highlighted the importance of the provision of preventative care to cardiac patients in Ireland. The study, "Cross sectional study of secondary cardiac care in general practice: impact of personal practice characteristics", was recently published in the prestigious Family Practice international journal. Medical and demographic data was gathered from the charts of 1611 eligible patients from 35 randomly selected practices. This is the first time that such research has been completed from a random sample of patients, with already established heart disease, in Ireland. The research has significant implications for the Department of Health and the HSE as it considers the future of the Heartwatch programme. Heartwatch is a pilot programme involving 20 percent of Irish general practices, to deliver appropriate preventive care to patients with already established heart disease. Appropriate care includes issues such as: lowering cholesterol and blood pressure levels providing aspirin and lipid lowering drugs stopping smoking increasing exercise decreasing fat within the diet. According to Professor Andrew W. Murphy, NUI Galway, "This study is the first study taken from a random group of Irish cardiac patients. It reveals that the preventive care which they receive is similar to that in other countries such as Australia, the US and the UK. However, these countries are committed to providing chronic disease management systems to improve care and Ireland should do likewise." A key focus of the research was how patient or practice variables impact on the provision of preventive cardiac care. Interestingly, gender or socio economic status did not appear to have any impact. The practice size or location had relatively little impact on secondary cardiac care. The most consistent significant personal characteristics finding was that patients with a diagnosis of angina only were significantly less likely to receive aspirin, statins or ACE inhibitors and more likely to have more missed opportunities for secondary cardiac care. The research was conducted by the departments of General Practice and Psychology at NUI, Galway and the department of Public Health and Epidemiology at University College Dublin. The study, titled "Cross sectional study of secondary cardiac care in general practice: impact of personal practice characteristics", was authored by Molly Byrne, Andrew W Murphy, James C Walsh, Eithne Shryane, Mary McGroarty and Cecily C Kelleher. - ends - For further information please contact Professor Andrew W Murphy at 091 750470 or Dr Molly Byrne at 091 495182.

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Céimeanna Oinigh bronnta ag OÉ Gaillimh ar sheachtar den scoth

Céimeanna Oinigh bronnta ag OÉ Gaillimh ar sheachtar den scoth-image

Tuesday, 27 June 2006

Céimeanna Oinigh bronnta ar Fionnula Flanagan, An Breitheamh Richard Goldstone, An tOllamh Deirdre McCloskey, Eugene Murtagh, Donagh O'Donoghue, Micheál Ó hUiginn agus an Gobharnóir Martin O'Malley Bronnadh céimeanna oinigh ar sheachtar den scoth – daoine ón domhan gnó, daonchairdis, ceartais, seirbhís poiblí, oideachas agus na n-ealaíon – in OÉ Gaillimh inniu, Dé hAoine, an 27 Meitheamh 2008. Dúirt an Dr James Browne, Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh gur "cúis bróid, thar ceann phobal OÉ Gaillimh, an seachtar seo a áireamh i measc alumni OÉ Gaillimh. Ach na céimeanna oinigh seo a bheith bronnta, áireofar iad i measc 60,000 alumni ar fud an domhain. Comhartha ómóis ar a bhfuil bainte amach ag na daoine seo iad céimeanna oinigh a bhronnadh orthu – an onóir is mó is féidir leis an Ollscoil a bhronnadh." Aisteoir Éireannach í Fionnula Flanagan a bhfuil Gradam Emmy bronnta uirthi agus ainmniúchán do Ghradam Tony faighte aici. Is in Amharclann na Mainistreach a d'fhoghlaim sí a ceird agus i measc na scannán ar ghlac sí páirt iontu tá The Others le Nicole Kidman, Transamerica agus Waking Ned Devine, mar aon le sraith teilifíse agus léiriúcháin ar stáitse. Chomh maith leis sin, ghlac sí páirt in eagrán den tsraith teilifíse Lost – eagrán dár teideal "Flashes Before Your Eyes". Thuill sí clú agus cáil in Éirinn den chéad uair sa bhliain 1965 tráth ar thug sí léargas iontach ar a cumas aisteoireachta i bpáirt Mháire i léiriú Theilfís Éireann den dráma Gaeilge – An Triail. Léirigh Fionnula Flanagan a cumas mar aisteoir a raibh sárthuiscint aici ar scríbhinní James Joyce sa scannán a rinneadh de Ulysses sa bhliain 1967. D'oibrigh an Breitheamh Richard Goldstone mar Bhreitheamh ar Chúirt Bhunreachtáil na hAfraice Theas; mar Phríomh-Ionchúisitheoir ar Bhinsí Coiriúla Idirnáisiúnta na Náisiún Aontaithe don iar-Iúgslaiv agus Ruanda; agus mar Sheansailéir ar Ollscoil Witwatersrand, An Afraic Theas. Chaith sé tamall ag teagasc i Scoileanna Dlí Ollscoil Nua-Eabhrac, Ollscoil Harvard agus Fordham. I láthair na huaire, tá sé ag feidhmiú mar ollamh ar cuairt in Ionad Dlí Ollscoil Georgetown. In 2006, chaith Goldstone seal ag teagasc san Ionad Éireannach um Chearta an Duine in OÉ Gaillimh. Is Ollamh Oirirc le hEacnamaíocht, Stair, Béarla agus Cumarsáid in Ollscoil Illinois, Chicago í An tOllamh Deirdre McCloskey. Tá sí ar cheann de na heacnamaithe, reitricithe, scoláirí agus intleachtóirí poiblí is mó cáil sna Stáit Aontaithe. Tá 14 leabhar scríofa ag McCloskey, ina measc The Bourgeois Virtues: Ethics for an Age of Commerce – an chéad leabhar as magnum opus cúig imleabhar. Sular foilsíodh The Bourgeois Virtues ba iad na leabhair ba mhó cáil a scríobh sí The Rhetoric of Economics (1985) agus Crossing: A Memoir, a foilsíodh i 1999, leabhar ar tagraíodh dó sa New York Times mar Notable Book. Is é an tUasal Eugene Murtagh bunaitheoir agus Cathaoirleach Kingspan Group Plc. Ó cuireadh tús le Kingspan an chéad lá riamh sna 60idí mar ghnó beag teaghlaigh tá fás agus forbairt dhochreidte tagtha ar an ngnó agus anois tá sé ar cheann de na cuideachtaí is bisiúla in Éirinn. Tá láimhdeachas de bhreis is €1.8 billiún ag an nGrúpa anois, lena n-áirítear 43 monarcha dhéantúsaíochta i 28 tír ar fud an domhain. Tá breis is 6,500 duine fostaithe ag an nGrúpa ar fud na cruinne. Cheap Rialtas na hÉireann agus Rialtas na Breataine Murtagh mar stiúrthóir ar an gCiste Idirnáisiúnta d'Éirinn in 2000. Tá os cionn €849 milliún infheistithe ag an gCiste seo i dtionscadail ar fud na hÉireann. Duine aitheanta i measc phobal gnó na Gaillimhe é an tUasal Donagh O'Donoghue mar aon le comhalta d'Údarás Bainistíochta OÉ Gaillimh. Tháinig O'Donoghue i gcomharba ar a athair mar Stiúrthóir Bainistíochta Grúpa Thomas McDonagh & Sons Ltd. sa bhliain 1975 agus chinntigh sé gur tháinig fás agus forbairt ar an gcuideachta thar thréimhse 20 bliain. I measc na gcuideachtaí a raibh ról stiúrthóireachta aige iontu tá Bord na Móna, Coimisiún Craolacháin na hÉireann agus Aerphort na Gaillimhe. Chomh maith leis sin, bhí sé ina chomhalta boird de IBEC, Cumann Tráchtála agus Tionscail na Gaillimhe agus Amharclann Druid. Comhalta d'Údarás Bainistíochta OÉ Gaillimh agus stiúrthóir ar Ó hUiginn Teoranta, Gaillimh é an tUasal Mícheál Ó hUiginn. Bhí sé ina chomhalta de Chomhairle Cathrach na Gaillimhe ó 1964 go dtí go ndeachaigh sé ar scor in 2004. Chaith sé daichead bliain ag obair ar son chathair na Gaillimhe, toghadh é mar Mhéara na Gaillimhe trí théarma éagsúla agus rinne sé an-obair ar mhaithe le cur le gach gné de shaol na cathrach agus an rialtais áitiúil, go háirithe sa réimse oideachais. Is é an Gobharnóir Martin O'Malley 61ú Gobharnóir Maryland. Le linn dó a bheith ag feidhmiú mar pholaiteoir Daonlathach i Meiriceá bhí sé ina Mhéara ar Baltimore ó 1999 go dtí 2007. Le linn an dá théarma a chaith sé mar Mhéara, ainmníodh Baltimore mar shamhail náisiúnta d'fheabhas i sábháilteacht phoiblí, éifeachtacht rialtais, oideachas agus forbairt gheilleagrach. Tá sé ag feidhmiú mar Ghobharnóir anois agus ag baint leasa as an taithí atá aige chun dul chun cinn a dhéanamh i Stát Maryland. Scríobhadh in The Washington Post gur "governor unafraid of government" é Martin O'Malley. Sa Business Week in 2005, liostaíodh O'Malley mar dhuine den "Five Fresh Faces" a chinnteodh dul chun cinn an Pháirtí Dhaonlathaigh. Le linn don Dr James J. Browne, Uachtarán OÉ Gaillimh, a bheith ag trácht ar ócáid na bliana seo dúirt sé go bhfuil "an-áthas ar OÉ Gaillimh céimeanna oinigh a bhronnadh ar sheachtar den scoth: Fionnula Flanagan, An Breitheamh Richard Goldstone, An tOllamh Deirdre McCloskey, Eugene Murtagh, Donagh O'Donoghue, Mícheál Ó hUiginn agus an Gobharnóir Martin O'Malley. Tá an t-ádh ar an Ollscoil seo go bhfuil an oiread sin céimeanna oinigh bronnta ar chéimithe den scoth le blianta fada anuas, agus is cinnte gur grúpa ar leith iad an seachtar atá roghnaithe i mbliana. Tá an t-uafás oibre déanta acu san iliomad réimse – gnó, na healaíona, seirbhís phoiblí, oideachas agus ceartas – agus cúis áthais dúinn anseo in OÉ Gaillimh aitheantas a thabhairt don sárobair atá déanta ag na daoine seo." - críoch -

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NUI Galway to host prestigious Industrial Relations Conference

NUI Galway to host prestigious Industrial Relations Conference-image

Monday, 26 June 2006

NUI Galway is to be the venue for the 56th British Universities Industrial Relations Association Conference, from 28-30 June. This is the first time that the full conference programme has been held outside the UK and many of the world's most eminent industrial relations and human resource management scholars, trade unionists and policy makers from around the world are to convene on Galway city. BUIRA is being hosted by the Department of Management in the Cairnes Graduate School of Business & Public Policy at NUI Galway, which is headed by Dr. Tony Royle, who commented, "Not only are we to welcome the BUIRA conference this year, but we are also hosting the annual Countess Markievicz Lecture on 29 June. This is the first time the lecture is being held outside Dublin and we look forward to hearing from Kieran Mulvey, Chair of the Labour Relations Commission." The conference will also be the focus for two special issues of the international journals: the Industrial Relations Journal and Equal Opportunities International. Guest speakers include Ron Oswald, General Secretary of the Global Union Federation the IUF, Professor Bill Roche from UCD, Helen Russell of the Economic and Social Research Institute, Dublin and Professor Charles Woolfson Marie Curie Professor University of Latvia and University of Glasgow. NUI Galway's President, Dr. Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, will be giving a welcome speech at the opening of the conference on the 28 June. More information about the conference can be found at www.buira.org.uk The conference is supported by the Irish Association of Industrial Relations, People Management Magazine (UK), CIPD-Ireland, CIPD UK, NUI Galway's Registrar's Office and Departmental MBS programme, CISC and Bord Fáilte. -ends- Notes to editors BUIRA started in 1950 and now has over 650 members. Its membership encompasses academics and doctoral students working in such fields as industrial relations, labour law, labour economics, human resource (or personnel) management, industrial sociology, occupational psychology, trade union studies and labour history. BUIRA is affiliated to and active within the International Industrial Relations Association and is also a member of the Academy of Learned Societies in the Social Sciences (ALSISS), which exists to encourage the advancement of social science. More information about the conference can be found at www.buira.org.

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