September 20, 2005

Crossing the Information Border: Developing an all-island agenda for cross-border information, advice and advocacy

Tuesday 20 September 2005

Share Centre, Lisnaskea, County Fermanagh

At the 'Crossing the Information Border' conference on 20 September were (from left to right): Tommie Gorman RTE Northern Editor, Deidre Farrell Anglo-Irish Division, Department of Foreign Affairs, Derek Alcorn Citizens Advice Northern Ireland, Leonie Lunny Comhairle and Pat Donaghy North/South Ministerial Council.

The conference was organised through a partnership between Centre for Cross Border Studies and Citizens Advice/Comhairle. Mr. Tommie Gorman, RTE Northern Editor, chaired the conference. The objective for the day was to outline the current cross-border information, advice and advocacy needs and services on the island and how those needs might be met in the future.

The conference featured presentations by representatives of the Secretariat of the North/South Ministerial Council and also presentations from a range of cross-border information projects on the island (Crosslinks,  EURES Cross-Border Partnership, ExpertiseIreland, Borderwise and BorderIreland)

A special feature of the conference was a presentation by Jörg Saalbach of Infobest Pamina a cross-border information and advisory service for the border region between Germany and France.

This conference was the first on cross-border information, advice and advocacy issues to involve all the key players on the island.


9:00 am Registration
9.30 Opening comments by Chief Executive of Comhairle, Ms Leonie Lunny, and the Chief Executive of Citizens Advice (Northern Ireland), Mr Derek Alcorn
9.45 Obstacles to Cross Border Mobility Programme – setting the policy context for the island Ms. Aingeal O’ Donoghue , Co-Chair, North/South Mobility Information Group (North/South Co-operation section, Department of Foreign Affairs and Mr. Pat Donaghy, Co-Chair, North/South Mobility Information Group (Joint Secretariat, North/South Ministerial Council)
10.20 Border Irelandan electronic gateway to cross-border activities on the island. Dr Patricia Clarke, Project Manager and Centre for Cross Border Studies Research Manager 
10.45 Borderwise  a cross-border advice and information service in the border region Mr Liam Murtagh, Project Manager, Citizens Advice/ Comhairle
11:10 Refreshments
11:40 EURES Cross-Border Partnership and IBEC-CBI Joint Business Council – cross-border labour mobility information.Mr Geoff McEnroe, Director, Joint Business Council and EURES adviser 
12:05 pm expertiseireland.compromoting mobility of expertise on the island. Prof. Conor Long (Dublin City University), Project Director 
12:30 Crosslinks an investigation of cross-border service barriers in the North West region. Dr Maria Angela Ferrario,Project Leader, ERNACT
12:55 Lunch
2:00 Pamina Infobest – A successful information partnership in the Franco – German border region. Mr Jörg Saalbach,Infobest and INTERREG Manager, Regio Pamina
2:45 Four workshops to assess the current situation and to explore possibilities for developing an all-island agenda.
3:30 Report back from workshops (three minutes each)
3:45 Panel discussion
4:30 Closing comments by Mr Andy Pollak, Director, Centre for Cross Border Studies