Thursday, 2 June 2011

In cooperation with Queen’s University Belfast and Essex University, the Irish Centre for Human Rights at NUI Galway will host an international tripartite video-conference dedicated to the life and work of Professor Kevin Boyle. Professor Boyle was a renowned international human rights lawyer. The conference will take place on Saturday, 11 June, in the Moore Institute, NUI Galway. The conference is jointly organised by the three universities where Professor Boyle spent his career. A tribute to his work, the conference will focus on key themes in human rights with which he was most engaged. According to Professor William Schabas, Director of the Irish Centre for Human Rights at NUI Galway, “the conference will bring together three of the world’s leading human rights institutions and some of world’s leading human rights lawyers who were both friends and colleagues of Professor Kevin Boyle.” Professor Boyle began his career at Queen’s University Belfast where he was deeply engaged in the civil rights movement. In the late 1970s he joined NUI Galway where he launched the Irish Centre for Human Rights. The last two decades of his life were spent at the University of Essex, where he directed its Human Rights Centre. In addition to his enormous academic contribution, Professor Boyle was active with important international NGOs such as Article 19, of which he was the founding director. He served as a special advisor to Mary Robinson when she was High Commissioner for Human Rights. Professor Boyle appeared frequently before the European Court of Human Rights, winning important cases that dealt with a broad range of issues, including freedom of expression, discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, and torture. Keynote speakers at the conference will include Professor William Schabas, Director of the Irish Centre for Human Rights at NUI Galway and Professor Sir Nigel Rodley, Professor of Law and Chair of the Human Rights Centre, University of Essex. For further information on the conference contact Nathan Derejko at the NUI Galway Irish Centre for Human Rights on nathanderejko@gmail.com. -Ends-

Thursday, 2 June 2011

Applications are being accepted immediately for 30 fully-funded PhD scholarships at NUI Galway. The Hardiman Research Scholarships are four-year structured PhD scholarships, and include full fees and an annual stipend of € 16,000. The deadline for applications is 19 June. The scholarships are focused on five key areas of research in which NUI Galway offers world-leading expertise: Biomedical Science and Engineering Galway is one of four global hubs for Medical Technologies. NUI Galway is Ireland’s leading university for Biomedical Science and Engineering, and home to the National Centre for Biomedical Engineering Science (NCBES). Major research clusters include REMEDI, Regenerative Medicine Institute, Cancer Biology and Therapeutics, Glycosciences and Biomedical Engineering, focused on Biomechanics and Functional Biomaterials. Informatics, Physical, and Computational Sciences The University supports research in mathematics, core physical sciences, and Information Technology leading to new technologies and contributing to the knowledge-based economy in Ireland. DERI, the Digital Enterprise Research Institute, is the world’s largest institute for semantic web research and is a SFI Centre for Excellence in Science and Technology. Environment, Marine, and Energy This research area covers environmental change and modelling, atmospheric studies, biodiversity and bioinformatics, marine science and law, and sustainable energy. At NUI Galway, researchers in the Ryan Institute work to assess the harmful environmental impacts associated with global and regional climate change. Applied Social Sciences and Public Policy Focused around the Centre for Innovation and Structural Change (CISC) and the Life Course Institute, NUI Galway is committed to improving understanding of innovation and social entrepreneurial strategies. Humanities in Context NUI Galway research examines areas such as disease, ageing and challenges to the environment from archaeological, literary or historical perspectives. The Moore Institute fosters the culture of research in this field at NUI Galway. NUI Galway President, Dr James J. Browne, said: “Our primary strategic aim is to attract the best students to NUI Galway and to support their development as innovative individuals who will contribute globally to economic, cultural and social development. The alignment of the scholarships to particular areas of research reflects our University’s growing international reputation in these fields of enquiry.” The Hardiman Research Scholarships offer opportunities for suitably qualified individuals to pursue a structured postgraduate degree by research. Structured PhD programmes, while retaining the focus on the advancement of knowledge through original research of traditional programmes, also provide professional development modules in subject-specific and transferable skills. Named in honour of James Hardiman, who was appointed the University’s first Librarian in 1849, the scholarship programme aims to produce highly focused PhD graduates from a pool of national and international candidates. Dean of Graduate Studies at NUI Galway Pat Morgan, said: “Throughout his life, James Hardiman displayed a tremendous breadth of interest, expertise and scholarship that has led to the naming of the award in his honour. His life and works will hopefully provide a source of inspiration to all those upcoming researchers who will be awarded the accolade of Hardiman Research Scholars”. Applications and more information are available to download at www.nuigalway.ie/hardiman-scholarships, with closing date for applications on 19 June and interviews taking place the week after. -ends-

Tuesday, 31 May 2011

NUI Galway has marked the 150th anniversary of the creation of Italy with an interdisciplinary one-day workshop focused on specific themes of debate. In 1861, with the creation of the Italian Kingdom, Italy became for the first time in her history a unified nation. The one-day workshop at NUI Galway, held on Friday, 27 May, was called ’Debating the Italian Nation - Historical and Cultural Perspectives’. NUI Galway staff from the disciplines of History and Italian were joined by prestigious overseas scholars to discuss the significance of the idea of the nation for contemporary Italian history, society, and culture. According to NUI Galway’s Professor Paolo Bartoloni, Head of Discipline, Italian Studies: “The 2011 anniversary is an occasion to reflect upon this important event in history and its significance from different perspectives. Our intention is to pay respect to an idea, but also to read that idea against and in relation to the mediation of time, memory, history and culture. The history of unified Italy is a history of struggles, of significant achievements, of great individual and popular successes, starting from the Wars of Independence, to the Resistance, to the economic boom. And yet it remains a history intercalated by divisions: the division between the rich and poor Italy, the Italy of the north and the Italy of the south. Professor Bartoloni added: “One of the most enduring historical catch-phrases to describe Italy is ’The Divided Italy’. This is a problematic division, a division that calls into question the very notion of unity. It is not by accident that time and time again attempts have been made to address and remove this division, an while it is imperative that economic, and power relation divisions, such as those still characterizing men and women relations, must be relentlessly tackled, it is also necessary that cultural differences be maintained.” Some 150 people study Italian at NUI Galway, including the BA in Italian and the BComm in Italian. The University is offering an evening Diploma in Italian in September 2011. -Ends-

Tuesday, 31 May 2011

NUI Galway is giving its graduates an opportunity to attend a unique graduate support event on Tuesday, 14 June from 9.30am to 1pm in the Careers Seminar Room, Arts/Science Building. The NUI Galway Graduate Job Search Boot Camp is a free event, organised by the Career Development Centre, and will focus on effective CVs, interview skills and using social media in the job search process. Interactive workshops will challenge participants to review their current approach to their job search and to apply the learning gained to enhance their job prospects. “We look forward to working again with our recent graduates and strongly encourage those who are looking for new ways to market themselves to come along and get their career back on track”, said John Hannon, Head of the Career Development Centre, NUI Galway. Places are limited to ensure individual attention and graduates are encouraged to book a place via the Careers website as soon as possible. To register or for the full programme, visit www.nuigalway.ie/careers. -Ends-

Tuesday, 31 May 2011

The Royal Irish Academy (RIA) has elected three of NUI Galway’s top academics for admission in recognition of their academic achievement. NUI Galway’s Professor Peter McHugh, Professor Colin O’Dowd and Professor Donal O’Regan were among twenty-three scholars in total from around Ireland who joined the ranks of Ernest Walton, Erwin Schrodinger, Seamus Heaney and Mary Robinson by becoming Members of the Royal Irish Academy. Membership is awarded to persons who have attained distinction in education and research. The NUI Galway professors work in the fields of Biomedical Engineering, Climate Physics and Mathematics. NUI Galway President, Dr James J. Browne, commented: “Research and academic excellence are the cornerstones of all that we do here at NUI Galway. My colleagues’ attainment of what is the highest academic honour in Ireland is testament to the calibre of our staff and research.” Professor Peter McHugh Peter McHugh is the Established Professor of Biomedical Engineering at NUI Galway. He is an internationally recognised expert in biomechanics, and works closely with clinicians and industry in order to develop mathematical models of human tissue and medical implants in an effort to understand their precise behaviour and to facilitate the design of new treatments and clinical procedures. Professor McHugh is a Fellow of the Institution of Engineers of Ireland and a recipient of the Silver Medal of the Royal Academy of Medicine in Ireland. His research is widely published and highly cited in high impact international journals. Professor Colin O’Dowd Colin O’Dowd is Personal Professor in the School of Physics and Director of the Centre for Climate and Air Pollution Studies at the Ryan Institute, NUI Galway. He is internationally recognised for his innovations, publications and international leadership in the fields of atmospheric aerosol formation, transformation and climate effects. Professor O’Dowd has been joint-chief editor of the premier atmospheric science journal (JGR-Atmospheres), and has been awarded Fellowship of the Institute of Physics, Fellow of the Royal Meteorological Society, International Smoluchowski Award, and a DSc by the University of Manchester. Professor Donal O’Regan Donal O’Regan is a Personal Professor of Mathematics at NUI Galway. He is internationally recognised as an expert in the field of Nonlinear Analysis, and he has made valuable contributions to fixed-point theory for single and multivalued maps, critical-point theory, operator equations and inclusions, degree theory and oscillation theory. Professor O’Regan has published extensively in prestigious, high impact factor ISI journals, and his many books and papers are highly cited. He also serves on editorial boards for many international journals. The Royal Irish Academy, which was founded in 1785 and has now 455 members, is the principal learned society in Ireland. Those elected to membership are entitled to use the designation ’MRIA’ after their name. -Ends-

Tuesday, 31 May 2011

The Gender and Child Welfare Network, which is an international group of researchers and practitioners, will hold its fourth Interdisciplinary conference, and its first Irish conference, at NUI Galway on Wednesday, 15 June, 2011. The network has organised three successful conferences previously on the relationship between gender and child welfare. This conference will focus specifically on the relationship between gender, child protection and family support. The keynote speaker for the conference will be Norah Gibbons, Director of Advocacy with Barnardos. Ms Gibbons will be discussing her recent report on the Roscommon case, which highlighted the importance of understanding and working with gender issues in child protection and family support. In particular, the report noted that an assessment of the role of the father in such cases is very important. Generally, practices in child welfare can ignore the role of fathers, thus missing out on those who are at risk but also those who might be supporters in the family. Moreover, the focus on mothers can often be unfair in that they are expected to carry the burden of protecting children from violent or abusive men. Conference organiser and Professor with the School of Political Science and Sociology at NUI Galway, Professor Bríd Featherstone, said: “I am delighted that this event is taking place at NUI Galway and that such a distinguished group of speakers from so many countries will be contributing their insights on such an important topic.” This conference brings together experts from the US, Canada, UK, Germany and Ireland to discuss their research in the following areas: working with men and women around domestic violence; training social workers to engage fathers; men in social work; working with mothers in case of child sexual abuse; new approaches to working with violence by children and young people; and working with fathers where a child has a disability. For further information on the conference, or to register, visit www.conference.ie. -ends-

Saturday, 28 May 2011

The 9th Galway Symposium on Higher Education will take place in NUI Galway from 9 to 10 June in Áras Moyola. The 9th Symposium is being jointly organised by NUI Galway’s Centre for Excellence in Learning and Teaching (CELT) and NAIRTL and this year the event is also the Annual Conference of NAIRTL. The title this year is Engaging Minds. Active Learning, Participation and Collaboration in Higher Education and will focus on aspects of student engagement in the learning process. Higher Education institutions are increasingly focusing on the importance of active student engagement in the learning process, moving away from the traditional stereotype of passive lectures and examination towards processes that involve participation, challenging intellectual problems, imaginative use of technologies and new approaches to large classes. Learners who take responsibility for their own development and who feel a sense of purpose and ownership are more likely to meet the aims of a graduate population that has high levels of critical thinking, flexibility and creativity. This international conference will address these topics. The two day symposium will be comprised of short papers, presentations, workshops, panel discussions and posters on themes such as students as co-creators of knowledge, civic engagement and social responsibility, the first year experience, engaging large classes and technology enhanced learning. Keynote speakers will include: Dr Lesley Gourlay, Director, Centre for Academic and Professional Literacies, University of London; Dr Derek Bruff, Assistant Director, Center for Teaching, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, USA; Elisabeth Dunne, Head of Project Development, University of Exeter; Professor Mike Neary, Dean of Teaching and Learning, University of Lincoln; Professor Guy Claxton, Co-Director Centre for Real-World Learning and Professor of Learning Sciences, University of Winchester; and Dr Paul Kleiman, Deputy Director of PALATINE and Senior Research Fellow, Lancaster University. Dr Iain Mac Labhrainn, Director of CELT said: “The theme of engagement touches on the very heart of what a ’higher’ education should be about. It’s about engaging the mind, experimenting with new ideas, critically engaging with the world around us, laying the foundations upon which to build a better future, nurturing individual creativity and collective responsibility, and hopefully about having some fun along the way.” Registration for the event is on the NAIRTL website NAIRTL website . The twitter hashtag for the event is #nairtl11. -Ends-

Monday, 30 May 2011

Professor Mike Clarke, newly appointed Adjunct Professor to the School of Nursing and Midwifery at NUI Galway, will give his inaugural lecture entitled Systematic Reviews for Natural Disasters and other Humanitarian Emergencies: Evidence Aid. The event will take place on Thursday, 9 June, at 6pm in the Lecture Theatre, Áras Moyola Building in NUI Galway. Professor Clarke is the Chair of Research Methodology at Queen’s University in Belfast and Director of the All-Ireland Hub for Trials Methodology Research. He is also the former Director of the UK Cochrane Centre. He has worked actively on dozens of systematic reviews in a wide range of areas, as well as on large randomised trials in topics such as maternity care, breast cancer, poisoning and stroke. He is the Podcast and Journal Club Editor for The Cochrane Library. Commenting on his upcoming lecture, Professor Clarke said, “I am honoured to be giving this lecture in NUI Galway, with its history of working with Non-Governmental Organisations and governmental agencies in humanitarian emergencies. In the aftermath of the Indian Ocean tsunami on St Stephens Day 2004, a group of us within The Cochrane Collaboration saw an unmet and pressing need for systematic reviews to provide evidence for people and organisations planning for and responding to natural disasters. We established Evidence Aid, and the devastating natural disasters and humanitarian emergencies since then have confirmed the need to strengthen and expand this work. I look forward to sharing these plans in my lecture.” Professor Clarke has a strong commitment to improving access to systematic reviews for people living and working in low- and middle-income countries, in particular to make it easier for individuals and organisations who have to cope with natural disasters and other humanitarian emergencies to use systematic reviews in their decision making. Welcoming Professor Clarke s impending lecture, Professor Kathy Murphy, Head of School of Nursing and Midwifery at NUI Galway, commented: “I am delighted with Professor Clarke s appointment to the School as Adjunct Professor. He brings with him a wealth of experience at the forefront of health care research and evidence synthesis. Professor Clarke s work on Evidence Aid pools together evidence that can help those who are responding to crisis situations and is a strong example of how researchers can practically respond to natural disasters and other major healthcare emergencies.” To reserve a place, please contact Sheena Connolly at sheena.connolly@nuigalway.ie before Friday, 3 June. -Ends-

Saturday, 28 May 2011

NUI Galway was among the award winners at the recent Royal Academy of Medicine in Ireland Annual Doctor Awards in Dublin. Andrew Murphy, Professor of General Practice at NUI Galway and his SPHERE team were awarded both the Royal Academy of Medicine in Ireland Award for Best General Practice Paper and the overall Royal Academy of Medicine in Ireland Award for Best Research Paper published by an Irish doctor in 2011. The SPHERE study was published in the British Medical Journal and focuses on the secondary prevention of heart disease in General Practice and was funded by the Health Research Board and the Irish Heart Foundation. NUI Galway’s John Laffey, Professor of Anaesthesia and his research group were also awarded the Royal Academy of Medicine in Ireland 2011 Prize in the Anaesthesia/Pain category. This work, published in the British Journal of Anaesthesia, investigated the efficacy of novel airway devices to reduce the in people at higher risk for difficult or failed tracheal intubation, which can cause serious harm in patients who are undergoing major surgery or who require artificial respiration in the Intensive Care Units. Professor Fidelma Dunne, Head of the School of Medicine at NUI Galway, commended both research teams on their achievements at the highly competitive event. -ends-

Monday, 30 May 2011

The School of Languages, Literatures and Cultures at NUI Galway will host an international conference on ecocentrism and ecocriticism entitled From Ego to Eco - Imagining Ecocentrism in Literature, Film and Philosophy. The conference will take place in the Huston School of Film and Digital Media at NUI Galway from 10 to 11 June. For many centuries, anthropocentric world views were crucial for the implementation of nature toward man s ends and played a part in creating the multifarious imbalances that today threaten ecosystems on a global scale. In film, literature and critical thought alternatives to anthropocentrism are being outlined, sensitivities awakened towards a global eco-consciousness that pays attention to the interdependence of species and ecosystems. A shift from imagining homo sapiens at the top of a hierarchy of existence or, alternatively, at the centre of global concerns to imagining a unity of being is taking place in literature, art and film through the ages. A unique and different inventory of artistic techniques, modes of expression, structures of realising this shift towards ecocentrism go hand in hand with an academic shift of focus. The aim of the conference is to bring together scholars from various disciplines within the Arts and Sciences and the Humanities to reflect on these changes and on ways in which works of art and mind break free from anthropocentric paradigms. Artistic visions and theoretical concepts that place humans in neighbourly relations with the 30 million surrounding species shall be central but also the discontents and possible dangers inherent in ecocentrism. Keynote speakers at the conference will include: Professor Lawrence Buell, Powell M. Cabot Professor of American Literature, Harvard University; Professor Hubert Zapf, Professor of American Literature, University of Augsburg, Germany; and Dr Thomas Duddy, Lecturer of Philosophy, NUI Galway. Commenting on the upcoming conference, Dr Tina-Karen Pusse, conference organiser and Lecturer in German at NUI Galway, said, “Our conference is meant to inaugurate green studies at NUI Galway and beyond. It will be an opportunity for people from all over the world to come together and reflect upon a paradigm shift. So far Homo Sapiens was placed at the top of our concerns and the center of all our values and structures. The leading question of this conference is: How can we implement ways of thinking (and hence acting) that lead to a paradigm shift and displace the Ego from its central position? How, from within the different disciplines of the so tellingly called ’humanities’ can this shift be understood and implemented? Which pieces of art, texts, ideas, can help us in this endeavour? This conference shall answer a few of these questions but first and foremost it will be an occasion of weaving a global network of scholars who have been working ceaselessly in the field of ’green studies’. We are certain that this is the way to go ahead and have already started to implement research alliances with universities such as University of Limerick and Trinity College Dublin, but also international networks with universities in Germany, Switzerland, Romania and the Czech Republic. We hope to strengthen these connections with the conference and to make NUI Galway the hub of these activities.” To register for the conference email tina-karen.pusse@nuigalway.ie or visit http://www.wix.com/nuigalway/from-ego-to-eco-conference. -Ends-

Friday, 27 May 2011

Professor Denis O’Hearn will be giving the 2011 Social Sciences Research Centre (SSRC) Annual Lecture in NUI Galway. During his talk, entitled Reassessing the Celtic Tiger: Its Rise and Fall, Professor O’Hearn will be speaking on his work in light of recent events with his talk. The talk, in association with the Department of Economics, will be on Thursday, 9 of June from 2 to 4pm in Lecture Hall 1 (CA111) in the Cairnes Building in NUI Galway. The SSRC Annual Lecture is a tradition of the Social Sciences Research Centre (SSRC), which is one of the longest running research centres in NUI Galway, established in 1965 in the then University College Galway. Professor O Hearn is Professor of Sociology, Binghamton University, State University of New York and has published extensively on Ireland, social movements, the sociology of economic change and much more. He is the author of Inside the Celtic Tiger, which cast an important critical eye on, and raised fundamental questions of, the former economic boom’s sustainability and its social impact. Professor Terry McDonough, Department of Economics, NUI Galway says “Denis O Hearn was one of the first analysts to argue that the Celtic Tiger had feet of clay. He is returning to Ireland for the first time since the economic crisis to give his informed take on the end of the Tiger. This will be of paramount interest to all those who have been following recent economic events.” The event is free and all are welcome. For further details about the talk, please go to the SSRC website: www.nuigalway.ie/ssrc or email Dr. Oliver Feeney on oliver.p.feeney@nuigalway.ie for more information. -Ends-

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

TG4 presenter and NUI Galway graduate Eimear Ní Chonaola today launched a new part-time degree in Applied Irish at NUI Galway. This is a new part-time degree which is being jointly offered by Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge and Roinn na Gaeilge. This is the first Arts degree in Irish to be made available on a part-time basis that will be delivered via blended learning. The Part-time Bachelor of Arts is a four-year degree programme in Applied Irish. The programme is delivered via blended learning, which involves a mixture of traditional face-to-face classes and internet-based learning. IT skills are not a prerequisite for entry to the programme. Appropriate IT training will be provided at regular intervals throughout the programme. The degree is aimed at mature students who may currently work full-time. Delivery by blended learning allows students with work and/or family commitments to study at times that suit their lifestyle. The BA syllabus will cover a wide range of subjects with special emphasis on language skills and on the Irish language in the contemporary world in a literary, professional, social and cultural context. Students will also take modules in applied areas such as translation and media studies. NUI Galway President, Dr James Browne, who was also present at the launch, stated: “I am delighted that this innovative new BA will be starting in the next academic year. NUI Galway endeavours to cater for adult learners who want to go back to education. This new part-time degree will offer the flexibility needed for people to continue their busy lives while at the same time gaining a University degree. I warmly welcome this degree.” For further information or to access an application form, please go to www.oegaillimh.ie/acadamh or www.oegaillimh.ie/gaeilge or contact Éamon Ó Cofaigh at 091 493802 or eamon.ocofaigh@oegaillimh.ie. -Ends-

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

NUI Galway has announced the graduands to be conferred with Honorary Degrees on Friday, 24 June 2011. Margaret Atwood will be conferred with a Degree of Doctor of Literature (honoris causa). The Canadian author has published more than forty books of fiction, poetry, and critical essays. Seán Campbell will be conferred with a Degree of Doctor of Laws (honoris causa). Seán Campbell is CEO of Foróige. Seán O’Rourke will be conferred with a Degree of Doctor of Laws (honoris causa). Seán O Rourke has been the presenter of News at One since January 1995. He is also the presenter of The Week in Politics on RTÉ One television. Seán is an Arts graduate from NUI Galway. Professor Gio Wiederhold will be conferred with a Degree of Doctor of Science (honoris causa). Professor Wiederhold is Emeritus Professor of Computer Science at Stanford University. Commenting on the announcement of this year’s graduands, Dr James J. Browne, President of NUI Galway, said: “NUI Galway is fortunate to be associated with many outstanding honorary graduates throughout its history and those being honoured this year form a particularly distinguished group. Each has made an outstanding and distinctive contribution to the diverse fields of literature, youth affairs, journalism and computer science. NUI Galway is very pleased to be in a position to recognise these exceptional individuals”. -ends-

Monday, 23 May 2011

The Centre for Research on Occupational and Life Stress at NUI Galway are currently recruiting individuals to take part in their Family Research Project. The research study will examine the influence of family factors and social networks on blood pressure, and is funded by the Irish Research Council for the Social Sciences and Humanities. The researchers are looking for parents and children (aged 6 to 10 years) to take part. Director of CROLS, Dr. Brian Hughes explained, “Previous studies have suggested that our social networks and family relationships affect our blood pressure responses to everyday stressful situations. Some people feel that this may help explain why socially supportive relationships can be good for your health.” Ann-Marie Creaven, a lead researcher on the study, said “Social factors are strongly associated with blood pressure responses to stress and are therefore relevant to public health. Little research examines blood pressure in children and parents specifically. This project offers parents and children an opportunity to see how their blood pressure fluctuates in response to everyday events. The findings of this project should help to inform the development of improved health promotion strategies for family groups and highlight the factors particularly relevant for parents’ cardiovascular function.” For this project, parent-child pairs will visit the laboratory together at NUI Galway, for an hour-long session where their blood pressure will be monitored. Parents will also be invited to a public talk outlining the topics of the research to take place at the end of summer. For details on how to participate in the study, contact the principal investigator Ann-Marie Creaven at 091 493264, or 085 1855560, a.creaven1@nuigalway.ie, or visit http://CROLSfamilyproject.wordpress.com/. -Ends-

Saturday, 28 May 2011

2011 marks the 100th anniversary of the publication of Ave by Irish writer George Moore and also marks the Fifth International George Moore Conference at NUI Galway. The conference will take place from 3 to 6 June at a number of locations in Galway and Mayo. The focus of this conference will concern the relationship of George Moore to the Irish Revival, and to those involved in various social/cultural/political movements in Ireland and Europe during the first decade of the twentieth century. Keynote speakers for the conference include Professor James Pethica, Williams College; Professor Lucy McDiarmid, Montclair State University; Professor Mark Llewellyn, University of Strathclyde; and Professor Robert Welch, University of Ulster. The conference will be hosted at the Moore Institute at NUI Galway on Friday and Saturday (3/4 June). On Sunday, 5 June, participants will travel to Moore Hall in Co. Mayo where the conference will continue with another keynote address and a presentation on the history of Moore Hall by researchers on the Irish Landed Estates Project. On Monday, 6 June, the conference will travel to Coole Park, Gort, Co. Galway, where Professor James Pethica will deliver a paper on Moore’s collaborations at Coole. Speaking about the upcoming conference, Conference Coordinator Conor Montague, said: “The Moore Institute at NUI Galway is delighted to be hosting the Fifth International George Moore Conference on this, the 100th anniversary of the publication of Ave. We look forward to a thought-provoking and enjoyable event, where Moore’s life, work and legacy will be discussed, paying particular attention to the cultural contexts in which he produced his best material, and his relevance to modern literature and criticism. We also look forward to presentations on the Moore family, and visits to Moore Hall and Coole Park. We would like to express our gratitude to Fáilte Ireland and the Irish Landed Estates Project for their assistance in bringing this conference to Galway.” Full programme details and registration information is available at www.conference.ie. -Ends-

Monday, 23 May 2011

The J.E. Cairnes School of Business and Economics at NUI Galway will host a three day intensive course entitled Topics in Microeconometrics. The conference will run from 1 to 3 June in Áras Moyola, NUI Galway. The keynote speaker for the event is Professor William Greene, Professor of Economics and Toyota Motor Corp Professor, the Stern School of Business at New York University. Professor Greene s work is at the forefront of knowledge in this field. This course will introduce the conference delegates to methods and models used to analyse cross section and panel data. It will show the change from the linear regression model to specifications for binary and censored data, ordered choices, count data and multinomial choices. The discussion will present basic models for cross section data then introduce theory and methods for extensions to panel data and stated choice experiments. The primary objective of the conference is to provide intensive instruction on frontier techniques in econometrics used in the analysis of cross section and panel data. The conference will include approximately ten morning classroom meetings. In the afternoon of each day, there will be hands-on analysis using ’live’ data sets and a familiar computer package. Speaking about the upcoming conference, Dr Mary Silles, conference organiser and Lecturer in Economics at NUI Galway, said: “Econometrics is central to the production of research in all domains of applied research relevant to public policy. This conference demonstrates the University s capacity to lead a programme of training in econometrics at the highest international level.” For further information, or to register online, visit http://www.conference.ie/Conferences/index.asp?Conference=117. -ends-

Monday, 23 May 2011

The Centre for Disability Law and Policy at NUI Galway will hold its third International Summer School from 6 to 11 June. The School will be co-hosted by the Harvard Law School Project on Disability and will take place in Room MY129, Áras Moyola at NUI Galway. The purpose of this six-day summer school is to equip participants with the insights and skills necessary to translate the generalities of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities into tangible reform for persons with disabilities. The teaching faculty includes senior academics, practitioners and policy makers from around the world who have been directly and actively engaged in drafting and implementing the Convention. The participants will similarly be from around the world and will bring great diversity to the debate; including persons with disabilities, their families, civil society groups of persons with disabilities as well as advocates for disability law reform, lawyers, policy makers and policy analysts and others. The summer school is directed by Professor Gerard Quinn, Director of the Centre for Disability Law and Policy at NUI Galway and Professor Michael Stein, Professor of Law, Harvard Law School and Executive Director, Harvard Law School Project on Disability. Professor Quinn states that, “This summer school is all about power - restoring power to persons with disabilities over their own lives and giving them knowledge and skills based on the new UN convention on the rights of persons with disabilities. Above all it belongs to the people affected and is structured in such a way as to enable people explore for themselves the relevance of the convention in their own lives and in the process of change.” Further information is available from the summer school website at: http://www.nuigalway.ie/cdlp/summer_school/welcome.html. -ends-

Thursday, 19 May 2011

Gearóid Moroney, a final year student in Electronic & Computer Engineering at NUI Galway has been awarded the Avaya Prize for the best final year project in Electrical & Electronic Engineering in the College of Engineering & Informatics at NUI Galway. His project involved the development of a web based system to allow a remote user to automatically tune and then play an electric guitar. A native of Ennis, Co. Clare, Gearóid beat a number of other challengers whose projects included a mobile phone application to allow older people to monitor and manage their nutritional intake and exercise levels, and a novel electronic circuit used to increase the efficiency of generators, which utilise energy wasted by the forms of basic cookers used in households in developing countries, to produce electricity. Dr Michael Keane, Senior Manager with Avaya in Galway commented: “Avaya are delighted to continue with the sponsorship of this prize. We have recently announced expansion plans involving 75 new positions, many of which will be filled by graduates with the types of technical skills that we have seen in abundance in all of these excellent projects. We were greatly impressed by the standard of all the projects which we reviewed but Gearóid’s project was particularly innovative. It involved the very challenging task of developing a number of different pieces of software and custom electronic hardware and then getting them all to work together to deliver a very novel and fun application.” -Ends-

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

A major electronic historical database will be launched at NUI Galway on Friday, 20 May. The database of the landed estates of Munster, c.1700-1900, contains information and a guide to research sources for 1,972 landed estates and some 3,230 estate houses in Munster.A similar database for Connacht was compiled three years ago and both provinces can now be accessed at the site www.landedestates.ie Since its launch, the Connacht guide has been ’visited’ by tens of thousands of researchers and interested parties from dozens of countries across the globe. This major research database was created by Senior Archivist, Brigid Clesham, with Marie Boran, Special Collections Librarian at NUI Galway as Adjunct Research Advisor. The Technical Advisor was Joe Desbonnet. The research project under which this database created was government-funded, as part of NUI Galway’s suite of research projects funded under PRTLI4. The Munster Landed Estates database will be officially launched by Dr Martin Mansergh, at the Moore Institute in NUI Galway on Friday, 20 May at 5.30 pm, during a Conference on Irish Landed Estates c.1700-1900, which will take place in the Moore Institute on Friday 20 and Saturday 21 May. Distinguished speakers at the Conference will include, Professor Joe Lee, Professor William Smyth, Dr Olwen Purdue, Caitriona Crowe, Finola Reid, Ciara Kerrigan and young researchers - Conor Montague, Joanne Mcentee and Laura Vickers- conducting research into aspects of the Irish landed estate and its influence. The conference programme may be consulted on the Moore Institute website. Commenting on the significance of this new major research database, NUI Galway’s historian Professor Gearóid Ó Tuathaigh, academic Director of the Project, said: “This major research resource will be invaluable in assisting and supporting researchers -academics and members of the general public - working on aspects of the social, economic, political and cultural life of Ireland, notably rural society, from the early eighteenth century to the eve of the Great War”. -Ends-

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

NUI Galway’s James Hardiman Library will host renowned photographer Tarquin Blake’s Abandoned Mansions of Ireland exhibition until Friday, 24 June. Opening today, this photographic project spans three years of research and documentation and contains more than 40 images of the lost estate houses of Ireland. Blake documents the end of the landed aristocracy in Ireland and the demise of their country mansion houses. His beautiful, haunting images of crumbling ruins convey an indefinable beauty in the decay - in the abandonment. The images are accompanied by history and folklore, telling of troubled times and private hardship. The exhibition also features two audio visual presentations. The exhibition will be launched on Friday, 27 May at 4pm by Professor Gearoid Ó Tuathaigh of NUI Galway’s Moore Institute. Professor Ó Tuathaigh is Project Leader of Landed Estates and Country Houses in Connacht c1700-1914, a major historical database. Tarquin Blake will be present at the launch. Also on display will be items from the James Hardiman Library’s landed estates collections. In 2010, Collins Press published a book of Tarquin Blake’s photographs Abandoned Mansions of Ireland. More photographs can be viewed on his website: www.AbandonedIreland.com. Over the summer period, the Library will be open until 10pm Monday to Thursday, 5.30pm Fridays, and 10 am to 5pm Saturdays. Admission to the exhibition is free. -Ends-

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

International experts will gather at NUI Galway later this month to further the scientific knowledge-base surrounding microRNA profiling. MicroRNAs are a class of newly discovered molecules within our cells that control the activity of genes. The regulation and function of microRNAs is still poorly understood, but they are required for the normal functioning of our bodies. When their behaviour is perturbed, disease, such as cancer, can arise. As a result, there is enormous interest worldwide in developing microRNAs as diagnostic markers and even as therapeutics to treat a range of conditions. The European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO) practical course entitled ’MicroRNA-profiling, from in-situ hybridization to next-generation sequencing’ takes place at NUI Galway from 21 to 27 May. MicroRNA research at NUI Galway has been a growing area since 2006, supported in part by a Transfer of Knowledge Grant from the EU (under Marie Curie Framework 6). Research groups in the Schools of Medicine and Science (headed by Professor Michael Kerin, Dr Linda Howard, Dr Nicola Miller and Dr Sanjeev Gupta, amongst others) are investigating microRNAs. Their work is focussed on diagnostics for cancer, regenerative medicine and a broad range of basic research areas from cell death to cell cycle regulation. These NUI Galway researchers will support a team of international experts who will come to Galway to train a group of 22 scientists from all over the world in the latest techniques for investigating microRNAs, as part of the EMBO course. The course will bring to NUI Galway basic and clinical researchers with interests ranging from marine algae, and viniculture to regenerative medicine and cancer therapy to learn the latest advances in microRNA techniques. The course instructors are drawn from the European Molecular Biology Laboratory, the Cambridge Cancer Centre, University of Cambridge and Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory and include Dr Eric Miska and Dr Greg Hannon, two very highly respected scientists in the microRNA field. The core of the team are experts from the EMBL-Gene Core, led by Dr Vladimir Benes who will share their extensive experience in techniques ranging from microarrays, in situ hybridization and RNA sequencing. Dr Howard Fearnhead, Pharmacology and Therapeutics, School of Medicine at NUI Galway said, “MicroRNAs are small RNAs that are critically involved in controlling an enormously wide range of cellular processes through direct posttranscriptional regulation of gene expression. The realisation that these, and other small RNAs, are so important has driven an explosion of research activity that aims to identify, characterize and understand microRNA regulation and function. With this increase in interest comes the need to provide training in the cutting edge research technologies. The course at NUI Galway fulfils this requirement very well by bringing together highly motivated non-experts and a team of international experts to study, discuss and share a fascinating area of modern cell biology.” The meeting is co-organised by Dr Howard Fearnhead, NUI Galway, in collaboration with Dr Vladimir Benes, and Dr Mirco Castoldi, EMBL-Heidelberg, and Dr Donal O’Carroll, EMBL-Montorotondo. -Ends-

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

The Eighth International Colloquium on Economic Growth, Structural Change and Institutions will be held in NUI Galway later this month. Jointly organised by the J.E. Cairnes School of Business & Economics at NUI Galway and the Department of Economics of the University of Brasília, the Colloquium will bring together a unique group of international scholars from North and South America, Europe, India and Japan. The event will take place from the 26 to 28 May in MY243 Lecture Theatre, Áras Moyola in NUI Galway. The main objective of the Colloquium is to contribute to the understanding of the ongoing economic crisis from the point of view of growth, structural change and institutions. The Colloquium aims to provide a platform for productive exchange of analysis and research results focusing on both theoretical and policy aspects of the theme. It also aims to stimulate the exchange of ideas from within the discipline of economics and other related disciplines to reinforce the multi-disciplinary approach to the study of Political Economy. The sessions of the Colloquium is organised along the following sub-themes: Economic Expansion, Demand Management and Structural change: Lessons from the Crisis; Growth and Income distribution: Theory and Policy; Institutions, Growth and Development; Interaction between the Real and the Financial Sector: Implications for Theory and Policy; Political Economy of Development: Gender, Power and Identity; Special session on ’Growth and Income distribution’; and Special session on ’Crisis in Economics: The Way Forward’. Speaking about the upcoming Colloquium, the organiser, Dr Srinivas Raghavendra, Lecturer of Economics at NUI Galway, said: “The Colloquium is an annual event hosted in different countries throughout the world and, and we are delighted that NUI Galway was invited to host the International Colloquium 2011. The Colloquium brings together outstanding international scholars in the field of Economic Growth, Structural Change and Institutions from Europe, North and South America, India and Japan, which on this year will address the implications of the global economic crisis. The Colloquium has been facilitated by the generosity of the University, J. E. Cairnes School of Business and Economics and the Centre for Innovation and Structural Change, reflecting the research activities of NUI Galway.” For further information or to register for the conference visit www.conference.ie. -Ends-

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

NUI Galway invites all graduates from the classes of 2001 and 2006 to attend its Reunion BBQ and Disco on Saturday, 11 June. The reunion begins at 7:00 pm and brings together those classes celebrating their 10th and 5th reunions for a fun, informal evening in the Students’ Union Bar overlooking the River Corrib - a perfect location for the Reunion BBQ event. Entertainment will be provided by College Bar regular DJ Byrno who will play hits from the late 1990s and 2000s. Emma Goode, Alumni Project Manager, encourages alumni to come along: “Reunion is that perfect excuse to put the date in your diary and say ’Right, that’s the day we’ll all get together again’. Busy lives mean that old friends fall out of touch and we’re told regularly that graduates look for these occasions to pull out the stops. Many alumni from the classes of 2001 and 2006 have already booked their places and they never regret making the effort. You never know who’ll be there.” The Alumni Association serves over 80,000 alumni worldwide with an extensive range of programmes administered by the Alumni Office. These include Alumni Clubs, both national and international, Alumni Publications, Reunions and Alumni Awards. Graduates who are interested in getting involved with any of the above programmes are encouraged to contact the Alumni Office for further details. Register at http://www.nuigalway.ie/alumni-friends/reunion/ or for further information contact Colm O’Dwyer in the Alumni Office on 091 493750 or email alumni@nuigalway.ie 

Monday, 16 May 2011

Six teams are keenly contesting the final of the NUI Galway Student Enterprise Awards in anticipation of securing an investment of € 15,000 into the winning project. The competition is the initiative of the NUI Galway Students’ Union, with the support of NUI Galway and has the goal of fostering a spirit of entrepreneurship amongst the students of the University. The competition successfully attracted entrants from across all of the colleges and schools of the University, from which six ideas were chosen to progress to the final stage. As part of the final assessment of their entries, students have received an investment of € 500 into their projects, and also have received the assistance of mentoring from the highly specialised team of mentors, which is comprised of a combination of members of the academic staff of the University and members of the local business community. The finalists are required to prepare their final business plans for submission on Friday, 28 May ahead of the final presentation of their ideas to the judging panel on Wednesday, 8 June. The winners will be announced at the final awards ceremony dinner on Friday, 10 June in the Bailey Allen Hall, Áras na Mac Léinn. NUI Galway Students’ Union President, Peter Mannion said: “We have been overwhelmed by the number and standard of entries to the NUI Galway Student Enterprise Awards. The entrants are testament to the exceptional initiative and creativity of students in social and business enterprise. They show that students are both able and willing to create the big ideas that will help fuel our recovery. The Students’ Union is delighted to be in a position to facilitate some of these ideas as they take their first steps. I have no doubt but that we are working with the leaders of the future.” -Ends-

Monday, 16 May 2011

NUI Galway will hold a public lecture by Professor Tony Lewis, Director of the Hydraulics & Maritime Research Centre, UCC, on Ocean Energy later this month. The lecture entitled The Status of Ocean Energy Development in Ireland will take place on Monday, 23 May, 2011 in Room IT125, IT Building at 2pm. Professor Lewis has been at the forefront of ocean research nationally and internationally for over 20 years. He has just returned from the most recent meeting of the Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change in Abu Dhabi. Despite the global recession, rising energy demand and limited fossil fuel energy supplies will ensure that focus is maintained on research in renewable energy. Ireland has enviable natural resources and has particularly ambitious targets regarding renewable energy, both wind and ocean. In his lecture, Professor Lewis will summarise the latest national and international developments in ocean energy and government strategies to meet the challenges ahead. “Energy supply and sustainability are key challenges for the future,” says Professor Gerry Lyons, Dean of College of Engineering & Informatics at NUI Galway. “While Ireland is very heavily dependent upon energy imports, we have unique advantages in terms of climate and location for the development of renewable energy sources. Professor Lewis is ideally positioned to help us all understand the challenges and opportunities.” For further information on the lecture contact Tina Earls, College of Engineering & Informatics at NUI Galway, at tina.earls@nuigalway.ie or 091 493143. -Ends-

Monday, 16 May 2011

This summer, as part of the Vents & Reefs (VENTuRE) expedition, Marine Scientists from NUI Galway and University College Cork (UCC), are amongst a team that are heading out to the middle of the Atlantic Ocean to check out a newly discovered hydrothermal vent ecosystem. Here, on the mid-Atlantic ridge at a depth of almost 3000 metres, the Marine Institute’s Holland I ROV (Remotely Operated Vehicle) will be sending images to scientists at the surface of a whole new world. This new ecosystem is such an exciting discovery that National Geographic Television will be there to film the whole experience. Patrick Collins, a researcher with the Benthic Ecology Unit at NUI Galway’s Ryan Institute, is the lead Marine Biologist with the Vents & Reefs campaign, and has organised a very exciting competition for second level students in Ireland. Over the course of the three week cruise, he will be collecting and identifying many previously undiscovered animals. As part of this competition one of these could end up with a students name on it. Patrick Collins says “This is an extremely important discovery, and one that we think people will be very excited about. We are asking for secondary school students across Ireland to use their imaginations and understanding of the sea to design their own deep sea hydrothermal vent creature. We’d like to see carefully thought out illustrations along with a description of the creature’s habitat, diet, life and evolutionary history, and whatever else you think is important. One lucky winner will actually have one of the new species that we discover at the vents named after them. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity!” This competition is open to all secondary school students across Ireland and the UK. Entries must contain at least one clearly labelled, hand-drawn or computer illustration accompanied by a separate A4 page (max 400 words) containing a comprehensive description of the creature’s name, its habitat, diet, etc. Completed entries should be posted to: Sarah Knight, Ryan Institute, Orbsen Building, NUI Galway. Competition deadline is June 15, 2011, and the winner will be announced after the Celtic Explorer returns to Ireland in August. Full competition details are available at http://www.ryaninstitute.ie/education-outreach/outreach/vents-reefs-competition/. The team are very grateful to the Marine Institute who are funding the cruise, and to National Geographic Television, who will be documenting the cruise, for their involvement and additional funding support. -Ends-

Monday, 16 May 2011

NUI Galway and Leitrim County Council have announced that the fifth International Seminar on John McGahern, commemorating the work of the renowned Irish writer, will take place from 21 to 23 July in Co. Leitrim. Last year’s International Seminar attracted more than 150 participants from Ireland and overseas. The theme of the seminar this year is McGahern and Creativity, and the keynote lecture will be given by Colm Tóibín, whose novel Brooklyn has just been shortlisted for this year’s International Impac Dublin Literary Award. Dr John Kenny, John McGahern Lecturer in Creative Writing at NUI Galway, says: “The role of creativity in all areas of innovative thinking is increasingly recognised, from the sciences to the arts and the economic endeavours linked with these. We should of course be careful about a catch-all or reductive approach to creativity, but we should also be suspicious about the sort of romantic approach that sees creativity as something indefinably ’special’, as if all a writer like McGahern had to do was walk the lanes of Leitrim waiting for beautiful thoughts to strike him. It is a familiar but vital truth that the creation of literature is at least as much about regular perspiration at the desk as it is about any kind of dreamy inspiration, and McGahern’s devotion to his craft provides an ideal context for the exploration of this idea. Our seminar promises to be an exciting investigation of how McGahern’s own talent and creative force of personality was formidably combined with the clever hard work required to become one of the greats.” Other speakers at the event will include the poets Gerald Dawe, Paula Meehan and Bernard O’Donoghue. The short-story writer Ēilis Ní Dhuibhne and the poet John McAuliffe will be reading their new work from volume 4 of The John McGahern Yearbook, edited by John Kenny, which will be launched at the Seminar. The Yearbook is a lavishly illustrated hardback and includes proceedings of the 2010 Seminar as well as a range of articles by writers and critics. The Seminar will also include a feature presentation by educator Michael Lally titled Zen McGahern, and the architectural historian Seán Rothery will be giving a talk on the nature of McGahern’s small towns. There will also be a viewing of McGahern’s screenplay, The Rockingham Shoot, after which a closing plenary lecture will be delivered by Professor Luke Gibbons. The Seminar will involve guided visits to John McGahern’s home places in Aughawillan, Ballinamore and Mohill in Co. Leitrim, and also to Cootehall in Co. Roscommon where a public discussion of McGahern’s first novel, The Barracks, will be held. As well as appealing to all lovers of McGahern’s own work, the International Seminar will be of interest to literary researchers and to book clubs, to readers of contemporary fiction and modern writing, and to all national and international students of Irish literature and culture. In addition to the public seminar, NUI Galway has organised the fourth intensive International Summer School on McGahern’s work and its contexts which will form part of the University’s 28th International Summer School in Irish Studies. The Summer School is designed for advanced level students and researchers who are interested in the writings of John McGahern, his life and times in 20th-century Ireland, and related areas of creative writing. The Summer School incorporates the International Seminar and continues at the County Library, Ballinamore, Co. Leitrim the week after the Seminar. The 2010 Summer School was attended by students from Britain and the United States as well as Ireland. Contributors to this year’s Summer School, directed by Dr John Kenny, will include Professor Denis Sampson, author of Outstaring Nature’s Eye: The Fiction of John McGahern; Dr Stanley van der Ziel, editor of McGahern’s Love of the World: Essays; and Dr Frank Shovlin of the Institute of Irish Studies at the University of Liverpool. Guest writers, including Kevin Barry, Martin Dyar, Mike McCormack and Belinda McKeon, will discuss the creative as well as critical implications of McGahern’s legacy. Historian Liam Kelly will give a feature talk on the local dimensions of McGahern’s thought and work. There will also be an opportunity at the Summer School to experience local social and cultural events. Announcing the McGahern events, President of NUI Galway, Dr James J. Browne, said: “The University is pleased to collaborate with Leitrim County Council in the Fifth International Seminar on John Mcgahern, which is designed to recognise and promote the work of John McGahern among scholars and readers of his work. The Seminar location in the heart of McGahern country in Leitrim, provides an unique opportunity to explore and engage with McGahern’s exceptional understanding and literary portrayal of Irish rural life”. Speaking about the 2011 programme, Leitrim County Manager, Jackie Maguire, said: “Leitrim County Council is delighted to be again working in partnership with NUI Galway in organising the fifth International Seminar and Summer School. The Seminar is an important part of Ireland’s literary calendar and presents a wonderful opportunity for people to engage richly with the work of John McGahern in the heartland of Leitrim”. For further details on the International Seminar & Summer School on John McGahern contact 091 495442 or visit www.nuigalway.ie/iss. -Ends-

Friday, 13 May 2011

Two NUI Galway researchers, Professor Abhay Pandit, Network of Excellence for Functional Biomaterials (NFB) and Professor Rhodri Ceredig of the Regenerative Medicine Institute (Remedi) were among five awardees funded under an innovative new research programme funded by the Johnson & Johnson Corporate Office of Science and Technology (COSAT) and Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) this week. The research projects, all in the biomedical sphere, were launched by the Minister for Research and Innovation Mr Sean Sherlock TD. The Healthcare Innovation Programme Award (HIPA), which was established by SFI with the support of COSAT is aimed at encouraging biomedical exploration in the specific areas of immune-modulated inflammatory diseases, including osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, graft-vs-host disease, psoriasis, lung disease, renal disease, inflammatory bowel disease, and neurodegenerative diseases. Speaking about the significance of the programme, Minister Sherlock said “Given that inflammatory disorders are a major cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide, there is now an urgency in expediting the discovery of novel therapeutic targets in inflammation, in developing new treatment approaches and in moving to translate these developments to clinical applications.” The Minister added “This timely partnership identifies Irish based researchers who will help accelerate the translation of basic research into therapies useful in the treatment of inflammatory diseases” Professor Pandit, in collaboration with Professor John Laffey, Department of Anaesthesia, NUI Galway will conduct a study on a novel treatment for acute lung injury. Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS) and acute lung injury (ALI) constitute the leading cause of death in paediatric and adult critical care; it is a devastating disease process for which no therapy exists. This study will use biomaterial-based nanospheres to deliver the optimal dosage of the SOD gene, to the lung using a nebulizer. This is a non-invasive approach, which will ensure translation to the clinical setting. Speaking about the award, Professor Pandit said “We are delighted, and very grateful, to receive this grant supporting our research. We at the NFB are keen to translate our research to the clinical setting and this award supports that ambition.” Professor Ceredig in collaboration with Professor Benjamin Bradley of the Institute of Technology, Tralee will conduct a drug discovery programme using by-products obtained from processing of natural materials. Some of these products have been shown to have immune-modulatory activity. Using a screening assay whereby whole blood is incubated in the presence of these materials, the funds will be used to identify novel immune-modulatory drugs from these natural sources. There are so many examples where novel drugs, such as aspirin and penicillin have been discovered from natural sources. Speaking about the award, Professor Ceredig said “We are honoured to receive this prestigious award for a collaborative venture between NUI Galway and the Institute of Technology, Tralee. We are hopeful that this form of collaboration will result in the discovery and development of novel therapies for immune and inflammatory diseases.” -Ends-

Friday, 13 May 2011

We the Citizens is a new, national, independent initiative to show how Ireland could benefit by citizens coming together in new ways of public decision-making. Funded by Atlantic Philanthropies and endorsed by the IUA, the main objective of the new initiative is to renew trust in politics at this time of social and economic crisis in Ireland. A number of citizen information events will take place throughout Ireland in May and June and these will culminate in a national citizens assembly at the end of June. Cork - Wednesday, 18 May at 7pm in the Clarion Hotel, Lapps Quay, Cork City Galway - Tuesday, 24 May at 7pm in the Radisson, Lough Atalia Road, Galway Blanchardstown - Tuesday, 31 May at 7pm in the Crowne Plaza, Blanchardstown, Dublin 15 Tallaght - Wednesday, 1 June at 7pm in the Maldron Hotel Tallaght, Whitestown Way, Tallaght Donegal - Tuesday, 7 June at 7pm in the Radisson, Paddy Harte Road, Letterkennny, Co Donegal Athlone - Tuesday, 14 June at 7pm in the Sheraton, Gleeson St, Athlone, Co. Westmeath Each event will close with a political comedy performance and Gary Cooke and Barry Murphy of Après Match fame are among some of the special guests lined up. To secure your place, or for further information, visit www.wethecitizens.ie or call 01 6706362. -Ends-

Monday, 9 May 2011

Six NUI Galway Researchers have been awarded Fellowships by the Irish Research Council for Science, Engineering and Technology (IRCSET). Over € 3.3 million will be made available under the IRCSET Empower scheme to support a total of 37 researchers who will carry out a research and professional development programme over the next two years. The NUI Galway recipients include Dr Fiona Brennan, Dr Olivier LeRoux, Biology; Dr Rory Coffey, Dr James Murphy, Earth/Environmental Sciences; Dr Alexander Rahm, Mathematics and Dr Micheal Scanlon, Chemistry. IRCSET programmes are aimed at knowledge creation within Ireland for the future benefit of society and the smart economy. The EMPOWER Scheme is targeted at developing the country s international reputation as an important location in which to carry out world class research, so that Ireland retains and attracts the highest level Research and Development capabilities for the future. The scheme was open to applicants worldwide who wish to carry out research in Ireland. Announcing the posts, Martin Hynes, Director of IRCSET commented: “Now in its ninth year, the EMPOWER Scheme continues to assist in building the strong Irish research system by facilitating talented young researchers to develop their careers in Ireland. These individuals both contribute to and gain from the experience of established research teams, developing the necessary skills to equip them for successful careers in a wide range of employment sectors. The scheme also facilitates international mobility within the research community by attracting researchers from other countries to Ireland. Each year it attracts a large number of applications from very high-quality candidates worldwide, and the scheme’s international assessment committee continue to be impressed by the exceptionally high calibre of the successful candidates.” Congratulating the six NUI Galway researchers, Vice President for Research at NUI Galway Professor Terry Smith said; “The IRCSET Empower scheme is an important scheme which gives our researchers at an early stage of their research career the opportunity to build upon and broaden their research and professional skills, which contribute to the excellent research being undertaken at NUI Galway.” All applications to this highly competitive scheme were subject to assessment, strictly on merit, by international assessment committees who are specialist in each domain. The decision to grant funding is based on research career to date, project description, proposed research environment and references from recognised research leaders. Further details are available at www.ircset.ie. -Ends-